Where Did Labor Day Come From? Great Facts and Figures on This 'Day Off'

How long is the average commute to work? What's the median wage between men and women? We've got some interesting tidbits for you from the U.S. Census Bureau.

Labor Day 2013 facts and figures.
Labor Day 2013 facts and figures.
The U.S. Census Bureau gets to know a lot about us as a group, us Americans. Here's some of the tidbits the national enumerators there have compiled to commemorate this holiday.

But first, the bureau notes that the first observance of Labor Day "was likely on Sept. 5, 1882, when some 10,000 workers assembled in New York City for a parade."

"Later that year, with Congress passing legislation and President Grover Cleveland signing the bill on June 29, the first Monday in September was designated 'Labor Day.'"

Labor Day By the Numbers

155.7 million: Number of people 16 and over in the nation’s labor force in May 2013.

15.9 million: The number of wage and salary workers age 16 and over represented by a union in 2012. This group includes both union members (14.4 million) and workers who report no union affiliation but whose jobs are covered by a union contract (1.6 million).

1.9 percent: Percentage increase in employment in the U.S. between December 2011 and December 2012.

$48,202 and $37,118: The 2011 real median earnings for male and female full-time, year-round workers, respectively.

5.7 million: Number of commuters who left for work between midnight and 4:59 a.m. in 2011. They represented 4.3 percent of all commuters.

4.3 percent: Percentage of workers 16 and over who worked from home in 2011. (We Patchers fall into this tiny percentage.)

25.5 minutes: The average time it took workers in the U.S. to commute to work in 2011. Maryland and New York had the most time-consuming commutes, averaging 32.2 and 31.5 minutes, respectively.


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