Holidays in the United States…

National holidays in the United States are 11 designated by the as official holidays. On these days non-essential national offices are closed although the employees receive pay.

National holidays are designated by the in Title V of the . Congress only has authority to create holidays for national institutions (including federally-owned properties), employees, and the. As a general rule of courtesy, other institutions, such as banks, businesses, schools, and the , may be closed on national holidays. In various parts of the country, and city holidays may be observed concurrently with national holidays.

The history of national holidays in the United States dates back to June 28, 1870, when Congress created national holidays “to correspond with similar laws of States around the District…and…in every State of the Union.

Although at first applicable only to federal employees in the , Congress extended coverage in 1885 to all federal employees.

The original four holidays in 1870 were:

Became a federal holiday in 1879. In 1888 and 1894, respectively, Decoration Day now  and were created. Armistice Day was established in 1938 to honor the end of  and the scope of the holiday was expanded to honor Americans who fought in and the when it was renamed in 1954.

In 1968, the gave several holidays “floating” dates so that they always fall on a Monday, and also established .

In 1983, signed  into law, and it was first observed three years later, although some states resisted. It was finally celebrated by all 50 states in 2000.

Christmas Day as a federal or is sometimes objected to by various sources, usually due to its ties with  In December 1999, the Western Division of the  in the case Ganulin v. United States, denied the charge that Christmas Day’s federal status violated the of the, ruling that “the Christmas holiday has become largely secularized”, and that “by giving federal employees a paid vacation day on Christmas, the government is doing no more than recognizing the cultural significance of the holiday”.

On June 17, 2021, signed legislation making a federal holiday, commemorating the of in the United States.

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