Three Trivia Questions to Test Your Knowledge of Presidents’ Day
by Michelle Carr Crowe, Silicon Valley REALTOR®
Silicon Valley, Calif. is arguably populated with the smartest people in the world. To test that theory, here are three trivia questions to test your knowledge about Presidents’ Day.
1. Presidents’ Day honors which president(s):
A. George Washington
B. Abraham Lincoln
C. Richard Nixon
D. Washington and Lincoln
E. All presidents
2. George Washington’s actual birthday is:
A. Feb. 11
B. Feb. 12
C. Feb. 21
D. Feb. 22
3. How often does George Washington’s actual birthday fall on Presidents’ Day?
A. Every year
B. Every 7 years
D. Every 4 years (due to leap year)
Now for the answers to the three trivia questions about Presidents’ Day:
1) A) George Washington. (Federally, at least.) What people refer to as Presidents’ Day, is, and officially remains, a federal holiday known as George Washington’s Birthday. States such as California that previously celebrated Lincoln’s birthday individually have now combined it into one holiday known as Presidents’ Day.
2) A) Feb. 11 and D) Feb. 22. George Washington officially and legally had two birthdays. Washington was born on February 11th in 1732, when the Julian calendar was still in use. In 1752, the Gregorian calendar was adopted to standardize the small differences in leftover time each year. This was when February 29 began being used every four years (Leap Year). The Gregorian calendar pushed George Washington’s birthday a full eleven days later, from February 11th to February 22nd.
3) C) Never-at least since 1971 (prior to 1971, it was every year). With the Uniform Holidays Act, Washington’s Birthday became standardized as a three-day holiday set on the third Monday in February. Ironically, this ensures the United States never honors President Washington on either of his official birthdays-neither Feb. 11 nor Feb. 22.
Here’s some interesting bonus information on Presidents Day.
Washington’s Birthday was America’s first proclaimed federal holiday acknowledging a public figure’s birthday. When first celebrated in the District of Columbia in 1880, and later in 1885 by all states, the holiday generated patriotic fervor exceeded only by July 4th, Independence Day.
A group, not a person, first suggested making Presidents’ Day an official holiday. Although President Chester A. Arthur first made George Washington’s birthday a federal holiday, it was a trade organization that first suggested creating an official Presidents’ Day holiday. That group was NATO-the National Association of Tour Organizers.
In the 1950’s, NATO proposed combining Lincoln’s and Washington’s birthday into one holiday, and setting it for the third Monday of February. In 1968, the Uniform Holidays Act officially set the three-day holiday, which first began being observed in 1971. Three-day holidays were originally initiated to limit workplace absenteeism. (The first four federal holidays were for New Year’s Day, Independence Day, Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day). While the holiday’s date was set, the name change did not pass.
The present-day confusion about the holiday’s correct name (Presidents’ Day or Washington’s Birthday) arises from conflicts between federal and state holiday observances.
For example, Abraham Lincoln’s birthday was celebrated as a statewide holiday by some states, including California, yet was never made a federal holiday. Certain states still honor Lincoln’s birthday separately from Washington’s birthday. Alabama uniquely celebrates both Abraham Lincoln’s and Thomas Jefferson’s birthdays together on Feb. 12th, (even though Jefferson was born in April).
Whether it’s called Washington’s Birthday, Lincoln’s Birthday or Presidents’ Day, share your new-found knowledge with others and enjoy the three-day holiday.
Read and learn more about Presidents Day, Washington’s Birthday and Lincoln’s Birthday at the sites below:
Thanks for reading “Three Trivia Questions to Test Your Knowledge of Presidents’ Day”.