The Scofield mine disaster in Utah in 1900 and the 3 year Pilbara strike by indigenous agricultural workers in Australia in 1946, are just a couple of reasons why May 1st is celebrated as International Workers’ Day. It recognizes workers around the world, like the ones that built the Empire State Building which was dedicated on this date in 1931.

Other events on this date were the Slave Trade Act of 1807 which took effect and abolished the slave trade in the British Empire; the legalization of same-sex marriage in Sweden in 2009; the shooting down of U2 pilot Francis Gary Powers in 1960; and the arrival of Naomi Umemura of Japan at North Pole, traveling by sled dog, the first woman to do it solo – in 1978.

People we welcomed onto the world stage on this date include: English-American architect Benjamin Henry Latrobe (1764) who designed the US Capitol building; Theo van Gogh (1857) who was a Dutch art dealer and brother of painter Vincent van Gogh; American writer Joseph Heller (1923 Catch-22); Mercury 7 astronaut Scott Carpenter (1925); and two beautiful ladies of music – Judy Collins (1939) and Rita Coolidge (1945).

Those leaving us on this date include: African American author and activist Eldridge Cleaver (1998); Star Trek actress Grace Lee Whitney (2015 – Yeoman Rand TOS); and actress Olympia Dukakis (2021, Moonstruck, Steel Magnolias).

Along with International Workers Day this is also International Sunflower Guerilla Gardening Day 🙂