2005-08-31 / Editorials

Labor Day Hails Workers, Marks End Of Summer Editorial

Labor Day is unique among holidays, according to Samuel Gompers, American Federation of Labor (AFL) founder and longtime president. "Labor Day...is devoted to no man, living or dead, to no sect, race, or nation," Gompers declared. A particularly American creation, the first official Labor Day arose out of a conflict between labor and management. It was a compromise arrived at in 1893 by then President Grover Cleveland after a strike at the Pullman Company, maker of railroad sleeping cars, had been quashed. Cleveland hoped the compromise would aid in his re-election. He lost, but the holiday became a permanent addition to the American calendar. And Gompers was right—Labor Day constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well being of this country.

Although autumn officially begins on September 22, on this coming Labor Day, Monday, September 5, all those who can will gather with friends and families and clog highways, parks, beaches and backyards for a final fling to mark the season’s last holiday and the official, if not the actual, end of summer 2005. We hope all our readers had a good summer and that the coming autumn brings all the exciting possibilities that its promise of renewal holds.

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