Labor Day

Updated February 21, 2017 | Factmonster Staff

Work in America: history, facts, statistics, and leaders

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Images of Labor Union Workers on Strike

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Labor Day History

The Labor Day holiday as we know it grew out of the efforts of labor unions over a century ago. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, records indicate the holiday was first proposed in the late 19th century. Two men are credited with the original idea: Peter J. McGuire, a co-founder of the American Federation of Labor, and Matthew Maguire, a machinist and secretary of the Central Labor Union in New York.


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Labor Unions

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