Trumansburg, NY - The story begins in 1858 when a community activist named Anna Reeves Jarvis organized Mothers' Works Days in West Virginia, with the immediate goal of improving sanitation in Appalachian communities. During the Civil War, Jarvis continued her efforts by prying women from their families to care for the wounded on both sides, and subsequently she convened meetings to persuade men to lay aside their hostilities. In 1872, Julia Ward Howe, author of the "Battle Hymn of the Republic," proposed an annual Mother's Day for Peace, and for the next 30 years, Americans celebrated Mothers' Day for Peace on June 2, until 1913, when Congress declared the second Sunday in May to be Mother's Day.

To celebrate and raise awareness of the 140-year-old holiday originally known as Mothers Day for Peace, the Rongovian Embassy in Trumansburg will host ‘Mothers Day for Peace 2010,’ a day of celebration featuring performances by Uniit Carruyo, Marie & Jeannie Burns, Mary Lorson & The Soubrettes, Paso Fino, and Old Time music with Emma Morris, Lydia Garrison & Friends.

The event will take place on Sunday, May 9th from 1-6pm at the Rongovian Embassy in Trumansburg. Suggested donation $7 per person or $15 per family. All proceeds will be donated to the Veteran’s Sanctuary.

Event organizer Heather Christ-Hallagan explains that the inspiration for the event came as a result of what she felt to be a need to honor and remember the important origins of Mother’s Day, ‘as something far more important than sending a Hallmark card or bouquet of flowers.’

To the activists of the time, the connection between motherhood and the fight for social and economic justice seemed self-evident. As a result, middle-class women in the 19th century played a leading role in the abolitionist movement to end slavery, and in the following decades, they launched successful campaigns against lynching and consumer fraud and battled for improved working conditions for women and protection for children, public health services and social welfare assistance to the poor.

“They believed that they bore a special responsibility as mothers to care for the casualties of society and to turn America into a more civilized nation,” Hallagan said. “This is something that should not be forgotten.”

For more information contact:
Heather Hallagan

Mother's Day Proclamation by Julia Ward Howe (1819-1910) 
Arise then...women of this day! Arise, all women who have hearts! Whether your baptism be of water or of tears! Say firmly: "We will not have questions answered by irrelevant agencies, Our husbands will not come to us, reeking with carnage, For caresses and applause. Our sons shall not be taken from us to unlearn All that we have been able to teach them of charity, mercy and patience. We, the women of one country, Will be too tender of those of another country To allow our sons to be trained to injure theirs." From the voice of a devastated Earth a voice goes up with Our own. It says: "Disarm! Disarm! The sword of murder is not the balance of justice." Blood does not wipe our dishonor, Nor violence indicate possession. As men have often forsaken the plough and the anvil At the summons of war, Let women now leave all that may be left of home For a great and earnest day of counsel. Let them meet first, as women, to bewail and commemorate the dead. Let them solemnly take counsel with each other as to the means Whereby the great human family can live in peace... Each bearing after his own time the sacred impress, not of Caesar, But of God - In the name of womanhood and humanity, I earnestly ask That a general congress of women without limit of nationality, May be appointed and held at someplace deemed most convenient And the earliest period consistent with its objects, To promote the alliance of the different nationalities, The amicable settlement of international questions, The great and general interests of peace.