As we prepare for our various fetes this weekend, let us ask for safe travels, good friends, and fond memories to be made. Saturday Mrs Marshall will be demonstrating at the Lucy Lane House Museum at Calico Ghost Town in Yermo, CA (just 20 minutes east of Barstow). We hope you’ll find time to stop in and chat, listen to some bluegrass music and otherwise enjoy the Spring Festival. Sunday Mrs Brewer and Mrs Marvel plan to visit the brand new ACWS event at Fairview Park in Costa Mesa, CA. This is the park by Estancia High School and Fairview Golf Couse, the one that has the train. Perhaps we will see you there.
In honor of Mother’s Day, the following was sent to me in an email. I do not know the source but will gladly credit it because it is excellent writing and well researched. If you know the source please let us know in the comments.
The History of Mother’s day can be traced back to a 17th century English celebration called “Mothering Sunday”, a Christian celebration on the 4th Sunday of Lent in honor of Mary the mother of Jesus. In the United States, Mother’s day was loosely inspired by the British day and was first suggested after the Civil War by social activist Julia Ward Howe (author of the lyrics to the Battle Hymn of the Republic.) In 1872 she began promoting the idea of “Mother’s Day for Peace” to be celebrated on the second Sunday of every June. Although the observance lasted little more than ten years, to acknowledge her achievements a stamp was issued in her honor in 1988.
Howe’s idea was influenced by Ann Marie Reeves Jarvis, a young Appalachian homemaker, who started “Mother’s Friendship Day” in 1858 to help mothers improve sanitation in their homes. During the Civil War Ann was instrumental in saving thousands of lives by teaching women in her “Mother’s Friendship Clubs” the basics of nursing and sanitation which she learned from her famous physician brother James Reeves.
Ann’s daughter Anna Jarvis, a school teacher and graduate from the Female Seminary in Wheeling, West Virginia, never married and cared for her mother until her death on May 9, 1905. Following he mother’s passing Anna Jarvis decided to dedicate her life to her mother’s cause and to establish Mother’s Day to “honor mothers, living and dead.”
As a result of Anna’s efforts the first Mothers Day was observed on May 10, 1908 with a church service at the Andrews Methodist Episcopal Church in Grafton, West Virginia, the church in which her mother taught Sunday school for over 20 years. Grafton is now the home of the International Mother’s Day Shrine.
The first Mother’s Day proclamation was issued by the governor of West Virginia in 1910; by 1911 every state in the Union had its own observance of Mother’s Day. On May 9, 1914 President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed Mother’s Day a national holiday to be observed each year on the second Sunday in May.
As the holiday exploded in popularity and became increasingly commercialized, the eccentric Anna Jarvis spoke out publicly against the exploitation of what she started as a religious observance. In one press release criticizing the floral industry Anna wrote: “What will you do to route charlatans, bandits, pirates, racketeers, kidnappers, and other termites that would undermine with their greed one of the finest, noblest and truest movements and celebrations?”
In 1934 Postmaster General James A. Farley announced a stamp to commemorate Mother’s Day featuring the famous painting of Whistler’s Mother, brought in to the United States from England in 1934 as part of an international art exhibit. Anna Jarvis was so incensed by the announcement that she persuaded President Roosevelt to remove the words “Mothers Day” from the stamp.
Anna Jarvis was at the end of her life penniless and confined to a nursing home. Unbeknownst to her, all her nursing home bills were all paid by the Florist Exchange!
In a recent National Retail Federation survey, in spite of the current downturn in consumer spending, Americans still intend to spend more than $2 billion on flowers this Mother’s Day.
According to the National Restaurant Association, Mother’s Day is the largest single day for restaurant sales in United States, larger than Thanksgiving, Easter or Christmas Eve.