*Recent Ruminations from LUPEC Boston, originally published in the Weekly Dig.
by Pink Lady
Ah, Labor Day—a time to relax, celebrate and have one last weekend of parties before summer turns into fall once again. We see this weekend as one last time to play, but Labor Day as a holiday has its roots in the labor movement of the late 19th century.
The first Labor Day was celebrated in New York City on September 5th, 1882, but the question of who first came up with Labor Day is debated. The most common answer is that Peter J. McGuire, general secretary of the Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners and a co-founder of the American Federation of Labor, first suggested a day to honor those “who from rude nature have delved and carved all the grandeur we behold.”
National legislation was passed honoring the holiday in the aftermath of the 1894 Pullman Strike, a conflict between labor unions and the railroad industry that halted traffic west of Chicago. US marshals and army troops ordered in by President Grover Cleveland broke up the strike, resulting in 13 deaths and 57 injuries. Following the strike, reconciliation with the Labor Party became a top priority, and legislation to make Labor Day a national holiday was rushed through Congress in order to prevent riots. It passed unanimously and was signed into law just six days after the feds left.
LUPEC would also like to give a special nod to our many forebroads who participated in labor movements throughout history. The Women’s Trade Union League, for example, organized garment and textile workers, worked for protective labor legislation for women and better factory working conditions. Groups like this also served as a support network for women working within the labor movement who were often unwelcome, even barely tolerated, by male officers.
We will keep these labor organizers in mind as we raise a glass—or rather, an ice pop—on this long, lazy holiday weekend.
The recipe below comes to us via Linnea Johannson, a badass party planner and food and lifestyle editor for Elle Magazine. We suggest experimenting with several incarnations—elderflower (use St-Germain), cherry (use Roi René Rouge) and apricot (use Rothman & Winter Orchard Apricot) are sure to delight.
ADULT ICE POPS
1 part Xanté pear liqueur
1 part lemon juice
1 part Champagne
Combine ingredients in an ice pop mold. Freeze and enjoy!