Father’s Day did not begin with the same illustrious gusto as Mother’s Day. Many folks felt that “fathers didn’t have the same sentimental appeal that mothers have.” Luckily, there were many who disagreed with this view and fought to have an official day for the dads out there. Sonora Smart Dodd, a child raised by a widower, wanted the same appreciation for male parents and took to the streets to rally support. With the backing of local churches, stores, the YMCA and certain government officials, the state of Washington was the first to celebrate Father’s Day on June 19th, 1910.
Not everyone took to this holiday right away with many men feeling it domesticated manliness. The holiday didn’t start to be seen in a positive light until after WWII. Advertisers started to argue that Father’s Day was a way to support the war effort and honor all those American troops. This did the trick, and though not an official national holiday, it was widely celebrated and became a tradition.
President Richard Nixon signed Father’s Day as an official National Holiday in 1972, 58 years AFTER Mother’s Day had been officially declared. We celebrate Father’s Day on the third Sunday of June and the day has become synonymous with barbecues of all shapes and sizes.
Conversation Ice Breaker Factoid: Ramjit Raghav, an Indian farmer, fathered his second child in 2012 at the age of 96.