The History of Father’s Day

History of Father's Day

It’s difficult to know for sure the original birth of Father’s Day, but it originated in the USA back in the early 1900’s. There are two very specific stories told; one of which is of a woman called Sonora Smart Dodd, whose mother died when she was young, leaving her father William Smart to raise their 6 children on his own. During a Mother’s Day service in 1909, Sonora felt there should be a special day to honour her father and others like him (as there was for Mother’s), and suggested the anniversary of her Father’s death (5th June) as the proposed celebration. Sonora was determined in her endeavour and successfully rallied the local churches, shopkeepers and government officials; and on June 19th 1910, the first statewide Father’s Day took place.


The second story is of a disaster that struck a small town, when 361 men within the community were killed in a mining accident. A lady called Grace Golden Clayton suggested  a church service to be held to celebrate the lives of those lost the following year.


In 1966, Lyndon B. Johnson, through an executive order, designated the third Sunday in June as the official day to celebrate Father’s Day. However, it wasn’t until 1972, during the Nixon administration, that Father’s Day was officially recognized as a national holiday.


In the Uk, there is no real confirmed date of when we started celebrating Father’s Day; but if you have any idea – we would love to know!


About Lisa Bone

Design & Marketing Associate for Choc affair. I am 23 years old and live in the beautiful city that is York! I love baking and creating new recipes for the Cocoa Corner. My favourite chocolate just has to be our Salted Caramel Milk Chocolate - it's extremely more-ish - so I have to be careful if there's any about!