Mother’s Day


This graphic was created by Savannah Hayes using Canva

Savannah Hayes, News Editor

Mother’s Day is a national holiday in the United States where oftentimes kids celebrate their moms by doing something special like buying them a nice little gift. All around the world, there are celebrations or holidays that are especially for honoring your mom. Mother’s Day is annually held on the second Sunday in May, meaning Mother’s Day is May 8 this year.
When asked if he celebrates Mother’s Day, McIntosh Freshman Ethan Thompson said, “Yes, I celebrate Mother’s Day. I celebrate it because it’s a great day to spend time with my mom and show her just how much we appreciate her. We usually get her a card and a gift that we all come up with together and we just try to show how much we appreciate her all day.”
There is a lot of history surrounding Mother’s Day. The first notes of celebrations and praise are from ancient Greeks and Romans who honored the mother goddesses Rhea and Cybele. Even though Mother’s Day has Christian roots stemming from Europe, the holiday has since become a day celebrated by both religious and secular groups.
Ann Reeves Jarvis, a social activist during the civil war, started the “Mother’s Day Work Clubs” in the years before World War II. These clubs had the intention to teach women how to care for their children properly. She organized “Mother’s Friendship Day ” where mothers gathered with former soldiers to promote a reunion in 1868, but this was a one-time occurrence and not an international or national event.
In 1872, Julia Ward Howe, American poet, and author wrote, “The Battle Hymn of the Republic,” and became the editor of Woman’s Journal a hugely read magazine at the time. A failed attempt to start a “Mother’s Day” celebration on June 2 by the name of “Mother’s Peace Dat” was led by Howe. By around 1890 another failed attempt by Howe occurred to celebrate Mother’s Day every 4th of July. In the late 1800 and early 1900, Mary Towles Sasseen and Frank Hering worked to promote and organize mother’s day. Hering even ended up being dubbed “the father of Mother’s Day”
After Ann Reeves Jarvis died in 1905 her daughter Anna Javis successfully created Mother’s Day as we know it today, she mentioned that Mother’s Day the term should contain a “singular possessive,” which is the reason for the apostrophe. This was so that every family could celebrate and honor its own mother and not just all mothers in general. Jarvis maintained the first official Mother’s day in May 1908. By 1912 the holiday was observed as an annual event by many states and towns across the U. S. and Jarvis started the Mother’s Day International Association. The second Sunday in May would soon be established officially as Mother’s Day by President Wilson in 1914. Additionally, Hallmark, the card company started selling official Mother’s Day cards in 1920. Javis’ happiness was short-lived as she started to grow angry about the commercial appeal associated with the holiday. She ended up spending lots of her money on attorneys for lawsuits against people using the term “Mother’s Day,” she also wanted to convince the federal government to remove the holiday from the calendar.
Mother’s Day around the world differs from the one we observe in the United States today. For example, in Ethiopia families collaborate every fall to eat a large feast, sing songs, and celebrate. This is part of Antrosht, a celebration honoring motherhood over the span of multiple days. Mother’s day in Thailand is always observed in August on the birthday of the current queen. This year it will be celebrated on Friday the twelfth of August and a traditional gift given is jasmine.
Sometimes the holiday has been used for feminist causes as in 1968 Coretta Scott King hosted a march on Mother’s Day to support women and children who are underprivileged. While around 1970 some women’s groups used Mother’s Day to shine a light on equal rights and easier access to childcare.
Alternative days for Mother’s Day include it being the fourth Sunday of Lent in the UK and Ireland since it is an international holiday celebrated all across the globe. Though most countries celebrate Mother’s Day like the US on the second Sunday in May. For most East European countries they celebrate on March 8 while most Arab countries observe the day on March 21 every year.
Caroline Lawson a sophomore said, “Every year on Mother’s Day I get my mom her favorite flowers and I print out a picture of our family to remind her that she is appreciated in everything she does.”
A couple of ways someone may celebrate their mother include decorating your mom’s door, giving her flowers, cooking her breakfast, making your mom a piece of artwork, or even making your own card. Mother’s day is a day specifically viewed all across the world as a day to celebrate and thank your mother for all that she has done.