Happy Labor Day!

International Workers’ Day is the commemoration of the 1886 Haymarket Massacre in Chicago, which occurred after an unknown person threw a dynamite bomb at police as they dispersed a public assembly during a general strike for the eight-hour workday. In response, the Chicago police fired on the workers killing dozens of demonstrators and several of their own officers.

© Diane Arbus

In 1889, the first congress of the Second International, meeting in Paris for the centennial of the French Revolution and the Exposition Universelle, following a proposal by Raymond Lavigne, called for international demonstrations on the 1890 anniversary of the Chicago protests. May Day was formally recognized as an annual event at the International’s second congress in 1891.

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