SEPTEMBER 17* - Constitution Day
& National POW/MIA Recognition Day
Constitution Day (or Citizenship Day) is an American federal observance that recognizes the ratification of the United States Constitution and those who have become U.S. citizens. It is observed on September 17, the day the U.S. Constitutional Convention signed the Constitution in 1787.
The law establishing the holiday was created in 2004 with the passage of an amendment by Senator Robert Byrd to the Omnibus spending bill of 2004. Before this law was enacted, the holiday was known as "Citizenship Day". In addition to renaming the holiday "Constitution Day and Citizenship Day," the act mandates that all publicly funded educational institutions provide educational programming on the history of the American Constitution on that day. In May 2005, the United States Department of Education announced the enactment of this law and that it would apply to any school receiving federal funds of any kind. This holiday is not observed by granting time off work for federal employees.
When Constitution Day falls on a weekend or on another holiday, schools and other institutions observe the holiday on an adjacent weekday. This was the case in 2005, when Constitution Day was generally observed on Friday, September 16 and 2006 when the holiday was observed on Monday, September 18.
Universities and colleges nationwide have created "U.S. Constitution and Citizenship Weeks" in order to meet the requirements of the law. For example, the Milwaukee School of Engineering (MSOE) has created a celebration week that includes "Constitution Trivia Contests", distribution of free copies of the U.S. Constitution, a campus & community fair (in which volunteer and community groups can share information with students), a web page with facts and links related to the Constitution and history of the United States. MSOE has also distributed thousands of free "Presidential quote" t-shirts to all students on campus.
In 1939, William Randolph Hearst advocated, through his chain of daily newspapers, the creation of a holiday to celebrate citizenship. In 1940, Congress designated the third Sunday in May as I am an American Day.
Louisville, Ohio, calls itself Constitution Town and credits one of its own for getting the holiday national recognition. In 1952, resident Olga T. Weber petitioned municipal officials to establish Constitution Day, in honor of the ratification of the US Constitution in 1789. Mayor Gerald A. Romary proclaimed September 17, 1952, as Constitution Day in the city. The following April, Weber requested that the Ohio General Assembly proclaim September 17 as state-wide Constitution Day. Her request was signed into law by Governor Frank J. Lausche. In August 1953, she took her case to the United States Senate, which passed a resolution designating September 17-23 as Constitution Week. The Senate and House approved her request and it was signed into law by President Dwight D. Eisenhower. On April 15, 1957, the City Council of Louisville declared the city Constitution Town. The Ohio State Archaeological and Historical Society later donated four historical markers, located at the four main entrances to the city, explaining Louisville's role as originator of Constitution Day.
The Space Shuttle Enterprise was originally planned to be named Constitution. However, even after the name was changed, the Shuttle was dedicated on Constitution Day, 1976.
The 2007 University of Florida Taser incident occurred at an event arranged for Constitution Day.
National POW/MIA Recognition Day
In the United States, National POW/MIA Recognition Day is observeded on the third Friday in September. It honors those who were prisoners of war and those who are still missing in action.
This day was established by an Act of Congress, by the passage of Section 1082 of the 1998 Defense Authorization Act. It is one of six days that the POW/MIA Flag can be flown.
The POW/MIA flag was first recognized by Public Law 101-355 in 1990.
Observance / Display
The POW/MIA flag should fly below, and not be larger than the United States flag. It is generally flown immediately below or adjacent to the United States flag as second in order of precedence.
* 2011: celebrated September 16
* 2012: celebrated September 17
* 2013: celebrated September 17
* 2014: celebrated September 17
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia