Washington’s Birthday aka Presidents’ Day
Today, February 17, 2014, is Presidents’ Day. It was originally established in 1885, and was held on February 22, to honor and recognize George Washington’s birthday. Abraham Lincoln also had a February birthday. Although it is still officially called “Washington’s Birthday, it is widely known as “Presidents’ Day,” and is generally viewed as a day to celebrate all United States presidents. In addition, the celebration date was changed to the third Monday in February in 1971 as part of the Uniform Monday Holiday Act.
PRESIDENTS’ DAY FACTS
There have been four presidents with February birthdays:
- George Washington: February 22, 1732
- William Henry Harrison: February 9, 1773
- Abraham Lincoln: February 12, 1809
- Ronald Reagan: February 6, 1911
Since Presidents’ Day was moved to the third Monday of February, it will never fall on any of these presidents’ birthdays as they are either too early or too late in February.
Starting in 1862, the Senate has read President George Washington’s 1796 Farewell Address on Presidents’ Day. It started as a way to try to boost morale during the Civil War.
To honor two of our most recognized and famous Presidents who had a February birthdays, we offer this image containing some inspirational and patriotic quotes from George Washington and Abraham Lincoln.
While Presidents’ Day means a day off for many workers and students, as well as a number of sales, please pause and reflect on our former presidents. It is surprising that after all of these years, today is still officially called “Washington’s Birthday,” named after our very first president.