By Diane Forrest,
In 1800, Congress declared February 22 a federal holiday. This day was named a federal holiday because President George Washington was born on this day. 16 presidents later, President Abraham Lincoln was in office. He was born on February 12th. Each state has the power to choose what holidays they wish to recognize, however, the birthday of President Lincoln was never declared a federal holiday. Some states celebrated Washington's Birthday, some Lincoln's, some celebrated both, and some celebrated neither. The state of Alabama even recognized Thomas Jefferson's birth.
In order to eliminate the extra holidays, time off from work and school, it was proposed in 1968 that a joint "President's Day" would be acknowledge on the third Monday in the month of February. The issue of this proclamation is credited to President Nixon in 1971 in order to recognize all presidents. Legally however, it will always be known as President Washington's birthday.
While today may not hold any special activities in your area, your kids will be out of school, and the banks will be closed, and the mail won't run, so why not go to the mall and catch a great sale on mattresses and bedding, and have a great President's Day!