The origin of Father’s Day

Father’s Day is an international event, celebrated in Islamic, Protestant, Catholic, Orthodox, Buddhist countries… in most of these countries it is celebrated on the third Sunday of June. In others like Spain, on March 19, but all have in common to pay tribute to the father figure.


Do you know where the origin of this celebration was born? Well, who promoted this day was a woman: Sonora Smart Dodd. Sonora’s father was a civil war veteran who became a widower, and had to raise his six children alone. Her idea is to emulate Father’s Day, as it was celebrated on Mother’s Day, which was already celebrated at that time.



Her campaign was successful, because the state of Washington instituted in 1910 the Day of the Father. It was celebrated the 19 of June, a day very near the date of the birthday of the father of Dodd (the birthday of her father was the 16 of June).


By 1916, Father’s Day had already been established in the third month of June, and had also been extended to the rest of the States. President Wilson, in 1924, gave a public speech to support the proposal to make this federal holiday. However, it was not until 1966 when the Johnson administration institutionalized Father’s Day as a national holiday.



Later or earlier, the different countries have adapted this festivity. As we have already mentioned, most countries continue to celebrate it on the third Sunday of June, as a curiosity, this year it will be the 16th.


In Oceania countries, it is celebrated the first Sunday of September, in particular Australia, Fiji, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea. In Russia, for example, is celebrated on February 23 to mark the day of the Defenders of the Fatherland. And in South Korea it is celebrated on May 8, the day that is considered Parents’ Day, merging the mother’s day with the father’s day, and it is customary to give carnations.


Regardless of the month or day that is celebrated, our fathers and mothers always have an important part in the calendar, and especially in our hearts.