The History of Father's Day

on June 07, 2022

Father’s Day is that time of the year when we get to celebrate the most important, caring and hard-working men in our life.

As we move towards Father’s Day, it’s time we begin planning the perfect celebration for dad, grandad and stepdad.

We've covered some of the most important Father’s Day traditions such as the Father’s Day gifts, cards and celebration ideas in our previous blogs. 

While we patiently wait for this joyous celebration every year, do we know about the history of Father’s Day? Well, if you don’t, you’re not alone.

In this article, we have brought you the history of Father’s Day and the unique stories that led to its celebration in the UK.


The History of Father’s Day UK

Father's Day Breakfast in BedFather's Day Breakfast in Bed

Mothering Sunday or Mother’s Day is linked to religious tradition in the UK. The day traditionally falls on the 4th Sunday of Lent, and is celebrated on a different date than the rest of the world. 

Whilst Father’s Day can find it's roots in religious holidays such as Saint Joseph's Day, a celebration by Catholics harking back to the Middle Ages , unlike Mother’s Day, the official Father's Day does not stem from a religious tradition. Instead the official day follows the example of the American Father’s Day.

When it comes to the origin of Father’s Day in America, there are a few instances that led to the day being declared a national holiday.

The first begins in a West Virginian Church in 1908 where the church had organised a sermon that was meant to honour fathers.

While the members of the church gave out red and white flowers to honour everything that a father does for his children, the day wasn’t celebrated by the community again.


The Efforts of Sonora Smart Dodd

Father's Day Road TripFather's Day Road Trip

Later, concerned by the fact that there was a dedicated day for Mother's but not one for Fathers, a woman named Sonora Smart Dodd aimed to set up a national holiday dedicated to fathers across the US. 

Sonora’s father, a civil war veteran, had raised all six of his children alone after her mother died during childbirth.

As a way to honour her father, she petitioned the government to announce a national Father’s Day on the 5th of June, her father’s birthday.

Her efforts succeeded when Washington state celebrated its first Father’s Day in 1910, however, it was delayed to 16th June.

While Father’s Day steadily spread across the states, it didn't become as widely known as Mother’s Day until much later. 

Most people say that this was because, back then, men weren’t as expressively appreciative of presents and celebrations as women, however, the real reasons are steeped in cultural history.


The Attempt to Abolish Father’s Day 

Sometime in the 1930s, a campaign to do away with both Mother’s Day and Father’s Day and to introduce a Parent’s Day emerged.

However, this campaign was swiftly shut down due to economical reasons as having both Mother's and Father's Day as separate occasions was seen as a great benefit to the domestic economy.


The Final Declaration 

Father's Day PopcornFather's Day Popcorn

Whilst Father's Day has it's roots deep in Christian and medieval history, with a long tradition of gifts being given, it wasn't announced as an official holiday until much later. For example, it was not widespread to give cards for Father's Day until late in the 20th Century.

However, in the USA, advertisers used Father’s Day as a way to promote the soldiers on the field during World War II. Thus, by the time World War II ended, everyone in America had begun celebrating Father’s Day.

Despite this, it wasn't until 1972 that Richard Nixon officially declared Father’s Day be celebrated on the 3rd Sunday of June every year as a national holiday. Due to the immense cultural ties between the UK and US, the UK followed suit and declared Father's Day on the same date. 


Choose Clintons for the Best Father’s Day Gifts and Cards

Now that you know all about the history of Father’s Day, be sure to spread the word on the 19th of June. 

While you’ve got the stories covered, it’s time to begin ordering the best Father’s Day gifts and cards for your dad.

With our wide range of Father’s Day card collections and the best Father’s Day gifts, you can find everything you want right here.

To learn more about our products and services, visit Clintons now!