Happy Presidents' Day

Art Deco Cast Iron Bookends of President Abraham Lincoln (LEO Design)

It's the third Monday in February, Presidents' Day!  Or is it President's Day?  Or, perhaps, Presidents Day?  The answer will depend on the mood of the writer (and which state s/he inhabits).  Congress established a federal holiday, called Washington's Birthday, in 1879, intended to honor only the first president.  The holiday was initially observed on 22 February, the first president's actual birthday.  Individual states have similarly made it a state holiday—sometimes calling it Washington's Birthday or Presidents Day or President's Day or Presidents' Day.  In 1971, Congress "regularized" many federal holidays, placing them on a certain Monday of a given month (thus, creating more three day weekends and not having strange, mid-week disruptions to the workweek). The term "Presidents' Day" remains strictly a colloquial usage, at least at the federal level.  

If the holiday was intended to only honor one president, then "President's Day" would be the correct punctuation.  But not every president plays by the rules.  Alas, we've seen, a president might come along who would appropriate the singular possessive holiday as his holiday (imagine that...).  Therefore, guardians of honor and propriety (like myself) insist on pluralizing the term, to ensure that no rogue ruler will embezzle the distinction in a crass attempt to make his brand great again.

The bookends, shown above, are made of cast iron.  Lincoln's profile is depicted in handsome profile, surrounded with Art Deco style.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about them.

Meanwhile, click here to read an interesting article in The Week about the politics of presidential punctuation.


Though our Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed, LEO Design is still alive and well!  Please visit our on-line store where we continue to sell Handsome Gifts (www.LEOdesignNYC.com)

We also can be found in Pittsburgh's historic "Strip District" at Mahla & Co. Antiques (www.mahlaantiques.com) or in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania at The Antique Center of Strabane (www.antiquecenterofstrabane.com).

Or call to arrange to visit our Pittsburgh showroom (by private appointment only).  917-446-4248