“Children’s children are the crown of old men, and the glory of children is their father” (Proverbs 17:7).
Contrary to popular misconception, Father’s Day was not established as a holiday in order to help greeting card manufacturers sell more cards. In fact, when a “father’s day” was first proposed there were no Father’s Day cards!
William Smart, a Civil War veteran, was widowed when his wife died in childbirth with their sixth child. Mr. Smart was left to raise his six children on a rural farm in eastern Washington State. One of his children, Sonora, realized, once she grew up, the vigor and selflessness her father had shown in raising his children as a single parent. She wanted a special day to honor her father and to let him know how special he was to her, so she first proposed the idea of a “father’s day” in 1909. It was her father that made all the parental sacrifices and was, in Sonora’s eyes, a courageous, selfless, and loving man. Mr. Smart was born in June, so Sonora chose to hold the first Father’s Day celebration in Spokane, Washington on the 19th of June 1910.
At about the same time in various towns and cities across America other people were beginning to celebrate local “father’s day.” In 1924 President Calvin Coolidge supported the idea of a national Father’s Day. Finally in 1966 President Lyndon Johnson signed a presidential proclamation declaring the 3rd Sunday of June as Father’s Day. Roses are the Father’s Day flowers: red to be worn for a living father and white if the father has died.
Father’s Day is a day of commemoration and celebration of dad. It is a day to not only honor your father, but all men who have acted as a father figure in your life — whether as stepfathers, uncles, grandfathers, or “big brothers.”
It is a time of cold coffee and breakfast in bed, family gatherings, crayon scribbled “I Love You” notes and, of course, that exquisite new Father’s Day tie!