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Thank You, Spokane Washington, for Father’s Day

Mrs. John B. Dodd of Spokane, WA, came up with the idea of Father’s Day back in 1910. Spokane’s mayor, who proclaimed the day to be June 19, embraced it.

Actually Sonora Dodd thought of the idea for Father’s Day while listening to, ironically, a Mother’s Day sermon in 1909. Sonora wanted a special day to honor her father, William Smart. He was a Civil war veteran who lost his wife while she gave birth to their sixth child. He was left to raise the newborn and his other five children by himself or a rural farm here in eastern Washington.

After Sonora became an adult she realized the selflessness her father had shown in raising his children as a single parent and wanted to honor that parental sacrifice. Since he was born in June, she chose to hold the first Father’s Day celebration in Spokane, where she lived, on that 19th of June in 1910.

In one of the few things he ever did in his administration worth remembering, President Calvin Coolidge supported the idea of a national Father’s Day, which was informally celebrated in the sixth month of the year, catching on in other countries, until finally, in 1966, President Lyndon Johnson signed a presidential proclamation declaring the third Sunday of June as Father’s Day. President Richard Nixon signed the law which finally made it permanent in 1972. Most countries around the globe now have some sort of Father’s Day –quite a few on the third Sunday in June but also at other times of the year.

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Hey Pops, you’re tops! Enjoy your day!!

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