As children, winning dad's attention was worth the effort. And, as we grew older, earning his respect -- though more of a job -- was a triumph in itself. The man we affectionately call Dad gave us more than life. He gave us a sense of who we are, and how we should act with dignity and honesty. We are ever grateful for his attention and patience as a teacher, his concern and love as a parent, and his helpfulness as a friend. Each Father's Day, we want him to know how much we care, but we should also remember and honor him the rest of the year.
The origin of Father's Day is not clear. Some say that it began with a church service in West Virginia in 1908. Others say the first Father's Day ceremony was held in Vancouver, Washington. Regardless of when the first true Father's Day occurred, the strongest promoter of the holiday was Mrs. Bruce John Dodd of Spokane, Washington. She thought of the idea for Father's Day while listening to a Mother's Day sermon in 1909.
Sonora Dodd wanted a special day to honor her father, William Smart, a Civil War veteran, who was widowed when his wife died while giving birth to their sixth child. Mr. Smart was left to raise the newborn and his other five children by himself on a rural farm in eastern Washington state. After Sonora became an adult she realized the selflessness her father had shown in raising his children as a single parent. It was her father that made all the parental sacrifices and was, in the eyes of his daughter, a courageous, selfless, and loving man.
In 1909, Mrs. Dodd approached her own minister and others in Spokane about having a church service dedicated to fathers on June 5, her father's birthday. That date was too soon for her minister to prepare the service, so he spoke a few weeks later on June 19th. From then on, the state of Washington celebrated the third Sunday in June as Father's Day. Children made special desserts, or visited their fathers if they lived apart.
In early times, wearing flowers was a traditional way of celebrating Father's Day. Mrs. Dodd favored the red rose to honor a father still living, while a white flower honored a deceased dad. J.H. Berringer, who also held Father's Day celebrations in Washington State as early as 1912, chose a white lilac as the Father's Day Flower.
States and organizations began lobbying Congress to declare an
annual Father's Day. In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson approved of this idea,
but it was not until 1924 when President Calvin Coolidge made it a national
event to "establish more intimate relations between fathers and their
children and to impress upon fathers the full measure of their
obligations." Since then, fathers had been honored and recognized by their
families throughout the country on the third Sunday in June.
In the webmaster's home country, Denmark, Father's Day is celebrated on 5th June, which is also the Danish Constitution Day, and therefore national holiday. Father's Day was initiated in Denmark in 1937 and from the beginning celebrated on 5th June. During the period 1947-56 Father's Day was moved to the second Sunday of November, as opposed to Mother's Day (second Sunday of May), but from 1957 until current day it is again celebrated on 5th June. No Danish stamps have been issued for Father's Day.
Sources and links:
The Flower Expert Flowers Encyclopedia provides comprehensive information on Fathers Day Flowers and it also speaks about the significance of flower in relation to the Fathers Day.
Revised 05 jun 2007