Mother's Day is around the corner and you have definitely heard or seen about it in the last two weeks - it's on the high street and all across the net. Did you know that the holiday was so commercialized at one point that even it's "creator" Anna Jarvis tried to stop it by filing a lawsuit to stop Mother's day festival. Right before her death she confessed that her effort to create Mother's day was her biggest mistake. Being a mother of a wonderful 2 year old angel, I personally think it is a great tradition.
But let's have a look at how we got here:
The celebration of motherhood goes back to Greeks and Romans, which honoured their mother goddesses. Back in the 17th century those living in the British Isles started a tradition of religious celebration of motherhood and called this day Mothering Sunday. It was held on the forth Sunday of the Lenten season. The history of the holiday goes back to the times when middle class parents had to send their children to work as house servants. The only day of the year these children were allowed to see their parents was Mothering Sunday. During the 19th century the holiday has become less popular. However, it was brought back to life in the days of the World War II when US servicemen reintroduced the sentimental as well as commercial importance of the day.
In the United States the first official celebration was held in 1858, when Ann Maria Jarvis, an Appalachian homemaker,
organized a day to raise awareness of poor sanitation conditions in her community and it was called 'Mother's work day'.
Julia Ward Howe, a Boston poet and an author of 'Battle Hymn of the Republic', 15 years later attempted to organize women to rally for peace. First time it took place on June 2, 1872. The following year 18 cities across America celebrated the holiday. However, this tradition did not last for too long.
After the death of Ann Jarvis her daughter continued to work on founding the memorial mother's day. In 1907, Anna launched her campaign by handing out her mother's favourite flower - white carnations to congregants at her mother's church in Grafton, West Virginia. In 1908, that church hold a special Sunday service in honor of mothers - a tradition that spread the very next year to churches in 46 states. In 1909, Anna left her job and dedicated herself to lobbying politicians to create a special day to honor mothers. Years later her hard work finally paid off and in 1914 the bill was signed which declared Mother's day a national holiday.
Ever since Mother's day is being celebrated on the second Sunday in May. Though at first it was associated with attending church, these days people give their thanks to their mothers by sending cards, presenting flowers and gifts, which you can do on MyHeritage quite conveniently.
Today this holiday is one of the most important days in the United States. And as it gets closer to the day, our team would love to congratulate all Mothers! May your children honor you on that day and every day!