The idea of a day honoring fathers came from the daughter of a Civil War veteran. Sonora Louise Smart Dodd’s mother had died in childbirth, leaving William Smart to raise his 6 children alone.

Sonora’s goal was to honor all fathers, and she approached local church ministers to explain her idea. On June 19, 1910, the first Father’s Day celebration took place in Spokane, Washington.

14 years later, President Calvin Coolidge recommended that the holiday should be widely observed. Although it took some time,  communities and states slowly caught on to the idea of a national Father’s Day.

In 1972, President Richard Nixon signed a law designating the third Sunday in June as the official Father’s Day holiday.

Happy Father’s Day!