We are proud to celebrate the achievements and milestones in women’s history!
A little history:
The earliest organized Women’s Day observance was held on February 28, 1909, in New York. It was organized by the Socialist Party of America in remembrance of the 1908 strike of the International Ladies Garment Worker’s Union. There was no strike on March 8, despite later claims.
In August 1910, an International Women’s Conference was organized to precede the general meeting of the Socialist Second International in Copenhagen, Denmark.
Inspired in part by the American socialists, German Socialist Luise Zietz proposed the establishment of an annual International Women’s Day and was seconded by fellow socialist and later communist leader Clara Zetkin, although no date was specified at that conference. Delegates (100 women from 17 countries) agreed with the idea as a strategy to promote equal rights including suffrage for women.
The following year on March 19, 1911 IWD was marked for the first time, by over a million people in Austria, Denmark, Germany and Switzerland.
In the Austro-Hungarian Empire alone, there were 300 demonstrations.
In Vienna, women paraded on the Ringstrasse and carried banners honouring the martyrs of the Paris Commune. Women demanded that they be given the right to vote and to hold public office.
Americans continued to celebrate National Women’s Day on the last Sunday in February.
In 1913 Russian women observed their first International Women’s Day on the last Saturday in February by Julian calendar.
Although there were some women-led strikes, marches and other protests in the years leading up to 1914, none of them happened on March 8.
The 1914 observance of the Day in Germany was dedicated to women’s right to vote, which German women did not win until 1918.
In London there was a march from Bow to Trafalgar Square in support of women’s suffrage on March 8, 1914.
In 1917 demonstrations marking International Women’s Day in Petrograd, Russia, on the last Thursday in February, which fell on March 8 on the Gregorian calendar.
Women in Saint Petersburg went on strike that day for “Bread and Peace” – demanding to end of World War I, to end Russian food shortages, and tsarism. That movement inaugurated the revolution.
Following the October Revolution, the Bolshevik Alexandra Kollontai and Vladimir Lenin made it an official holiday in the Soviet Union, but it was a working day until 1965.
On May 8, 1965 by the decree of the USSR Presidium of the Supreme, Soviet International Women’s Day was declared a non-working day.
From its official adoption in Soviet Russia following the Revolution in 1917 the holiday was predominantly celebrated in communist countries and by the communist movement worldwide.
It was celebrated by the communists in China from 1922, and by Spanish communists in 1936. After the founding of the People’s Republic of China on October 1, 1949 the state council proclaimed on December 23 that March 8 would be made an official holiday with women in China given a half-day off.
The United Nations began celebrating in International Women’s Day in the International Women’s Year, 1975.
In 1977, the United Nations General Assembly invited member states to proclaim March 8 as the UN Day for women’s rights and world peace.
Copyright @ 2017 Human Relationships. All Rights Reserved.