Father's Day is a celebration honoring fathers and celebrating fatherhood, paternal bonds, and the influence of fathers in society. However, do you know how this tradition came into existence?
Let's take you on a journey which ends at the invention of the Father's Day. Originally Father's day originated in Spanish and European countries. It is thanks to them, that we are celebrating our industrious fathers each year. These countries celebrated Father's Day on March 19, which was known as Saint Joseph's Day. The United States and other neighboring countries adopted the US timing system and started celebrating Father's Day on the third Sunday of June.
Dig deeper and you'll find that Father's day was accepted as a national holiday because it complimented the Mother's Day. It was after the promotion of Mother's Day that Father's Day started to gain its air. So, what initiated Father's Day commotion in 1908? Turns out, it was a man named Grace Golden Clayton who was mourning the death of his father in the great Monongah Mining Disaster which killed 361 men, out of which 250 were fathers, leaving thousands of children fatherless. Clayton suggested that Father's Day should be celebrated in the honor of all those fathers who died in the Monongah Mining Disaster (noble soul!). Unfortunately, the time was not in favor of Clayton. The City already had two major news at its disposal and did not needed anything more.
The first among the two big news that engaged the whole city was the celebration of Independence Day on July 4 with a hot air balloon event with 12,000 attendees and the other was about the death of a sixteen-year-old girl on July 4.
The local church and council were overwhelmed and they did not even think of promoting the event, and it was not celebrated again for many years. The original sermon was not reproduced by the press and it was lost. Finally, Clayton was a quiet person, who never promoted the event and never talked to other persons about it.
A brand new attempt in 1911 was made by Jane Addams, who proposed that a citywide Father's Day celebration be held in Chicago, but she deliberately was turned down.
In 1912, there was a Father's Day celebration in Vancouver, Washington, suggested by Methodist pastor J. J. Berringer of the Irvington Methodist Church. They mistakenly believed that they had been the first to celebrate such a day. However, they never stopped celebrating it even after they came to know the truth about the trails that this Father's Day had already sculptured into the history.
It was on June 19, 1910, when the first official Father's Day was celebrated in the United States. After hearing a sermon about Jarvis' Mother's Day in 1909 at Central Methodist Episcopal Church, Sonora Smart Dodd suggested (daughter of American Civil War veteran William Jackson Smarttold) to her pastor that fathers should have a similar holiday to honor them. Although she initially suggested June 5, her father's birthday, the pastors did not have enough time to prepare their sermons, and the celebration was deferred to the third Sunday in June. Several local clergymen accepted the idea, and on June 19, 1910, the first Father's Day, "sermons honoring fathers were presented throughout the city".
Quoting from Wikipedia - "However, in the 1920s, Dodd stopped promoting the celebration because she was studying at the Art Institute of Chicago, and it faded into relative obscurity, even in Spokane. In the 1930s, Dodd returned to Spokane and started promoting the celebration again, raising awareness at a national level. She had the help of those trade groups that would benefit most from the holiday, for example, the manufacturers of ties, tobacco pipes, and any traditional present for fathers. By 1938, she had the help of the Father's Day Council, founded by the New York Associated Men's Wear Retailers to consolidate and systematize the holiday's commercial promotion. Americans resisted the holiday for its first few decades, viewing it as nothing more than an attempt by merchants to replicate the commercial success of Mother's Day, and newspapers frequently featured cynical and sarcastic attacks and jokes. However, the said merchants remained resilient and even incorporated these attacks into their advertisements. By the mid-1980s, the Father's Day Council wrote, "(...) [Father's Day] has become a Second Christmas for all the men's gift-oriented industries."