President’s Day is a day off from school but have you ever wondered why we celebrate President’s Day? Did you know that President’s Day started off as George Washington Day? Find out all the cool facts about President’s Day with these President’s Day Facts for Kids.
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George Washington’s Birthday
President’s Day dates back to the 1800s. The year after the death of President George Washington. Washington was born on February 22, 1732, and died on December 14, 1799. He was America’s first president. February 22nd was George Washington’s birthday. It became a day of remembrance to celebrate our nation’s first president. Each year more and more people celebrated his birthday and in 1885 it became a holiday. In the late 1870’s Arkansas Senator Steven Wallace Dorsey proposed that the nation declare George Washington’s Birthday a federal holiday.
In 1879 President Rutherford B. Hayes signed a bill declaring February 22nd George Washington Day a federal holiday. Washington became the first American citizen in history with a federal holiday. By 1885 the holiday expanded and the entire country was celebrating George Washington’s birthday.
President’s Day Facts
In 1968 Congress passed a bill called the uniform Monday Holiday Bill. The bill was passed to create 3 day weekends for workers and moved some holidays to Mondays. The hope was to boost the travel industry by people taking short vacations for the three-day weekend. The bill combined George Washington’s birthday on February 22nd with Abraham Lincoln’s birthday on February 12th.
In 1971 George Washington’s Day was moved to the third Monday in the month of February to give workers a three-day weekend. The name of the holiday was never officially changed to President’s Day however in most states the holiday is called President’s Day.
Other holidays that moved to Monday include:
Memorial Day which is celebrated on the last Monday in May.
Labor Day observed on the first Monday in September.
Columbus Day observed on the 2nd Monday on October.
Presidents Born in February
Presidents born in February: George Washington 2/22, Abraham Lincoln 2/12, Ronald Reagan 2/6, and William Henry Harrison 2/9.
How is President’s Day Celebrated?
The holiday is celebrated differently in each state. Kids have the day off from school and many offices and businesses are closes. Government offices, courts, and the Stock Exchange are all closed.
Many stores have large sales on President’s Day to draw in customers. Popular items that have sales include electronics, clothing, and cars.
In some areas, it is custom to eat cherry pie on President’s Day because of the story about George Washington cutting down a cherry tree.
Some states and cities have parades and local celebrations to honor and support past presidents.
President Fun Facts
- Presidents live at the White House in Washington D.C. Before it was called the White House it was called the President’s House.
- On November 1, 1800, President John Adams became the first president to live at the White House.
- Mount Rushmore is located in the state of North Dakota. It is a large sculpture of the president’s faces carved into the granite. The faces on Mount Rushmore include George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln.
- It took the sculptor Gutzon Borglum 20 years to complete. He started in 1921 and finished in 1941.
- In 1939 President Roosevelt became the first president to appear on television.
- On May 10th, 1877 the first telephone was installed in the White House. President Rutherford Hayes was in office.
- Abraham Lincoln was the tallest president. He was 6 ft 4 inches.
- James Madison was the shortest president. He was 5 ft 4 inches.
List of Presidents in Order
- George Washington 1789-1797
- John Adams 1797-1801
- Thomas Jefferson 1801-1809
- James Madison 1809-1817
- James Monroe 1817-1825
- John Quincy Adams 1825-1829
- Andrew Jackson 1829-1837
- Martin Van Buren 1837-1841
- William Henry Harrison 1841-1841
- John Taylor 1841-1845
- James K. Polk 1845-1849
- Zachary Taylor 1849-1850
- Millard Fillmore 1850-1853
- Franklin Pierce 1853-1857
- James Buchanan 1857-1861
- Abraham Lincoln 1861-1865
- Andrew Johnson 1865-1869
- Ulysses S. Grant 1869-1877
- Rutherford B. Hayes 1817-1881
- James A. Garfield 1881-1881
- Chester A. Arthur 1881-1885
- Grover Cleveland 1885-1889
- Benjamin Harrison 1889-1893
- Grover Cleveland 1893-1897
- William McKinley 18-97-1901
- Theodore Roosevelt 1901-1909
- William Howard Taft 1909-1913
- Woodrow Wilson 1913-1921
- Warren G. Harding 1921-1923
- Calvin Coolidge 1923-1929
- Herbert Hoover 1929-1933
- Franklin D. Roosevelt 1935-1945
- Harry Truman 1945-1953
- Dwight Eisenhower 1953-1961
- John F. Kennedy 1961-1963
- Lyndon B. Johnson 1963-1969
- Richard Nixon 1969-1974
- Gerald Ford 1974-1977
- Jimmy Carter 1977-1981
- Ronald Reagan 1981-1989
- George H. W. Bush 1989-1993
- Wiliam J. Clinton 1993-2001
- George Bush 2001-2009
- Barack Obama 2009-2017
- Donald J. Trump 2017-2021
- Joesph R. Biden 2021-Present