To honor West Virginia's historic role in creating Mother's Day a century ago, Senators Jay Rockefeller and Joe Manchin today introduced legislation to mint commemorative coins in honor of the 100th Mother's Day. The coin would help fund scientific research into life-threatening diseases that often afflict children, as well as fund osteoporosis research.
"The importance of a mother's warmth and guidance in the life of a child cannot be overstated. And while their patience and love should be honored every day, Mother's Day is a special observation of a mother's unique successes and strengths," Rockefeller said. "West Virginia played a special role in creating Mother's Day as a way to recognize mothers everywhere. A century later, we have the opportunity to again honor our mothers in such a tremendous way by doing something that can benefit the health of women and their children. This commemorative coin would do that by raising money that will benefit organizations that advance critical medical research into health issues that impact women -- like our own mothers and grandmothers -- and into life threatening diseases common among children."
"Our mothers -- and the many other women who have played maternal roles in our lives -- raised us, supported us, challenged us, and nurtured us. The tenderness, devotion and unconditional love our mothers shared are felt in our hearts far after we leave home. And for those of us lucky enough to still have our mothers with us should treat every day like it is Mother's Day. But on the one day of the year when we do celebrate Mother's Day, it is a truly special occasion -- especially for West Virginians since our very own Grafton, West Virginia native pushed to officially establish the official holiday. I am proud to introduce this legislation with my dear friend Senator Rockefeller to express yet another way to recognize and honor the mothers who have played such meaningful roles in our lives," Manchin said.
The Mother's Day Centennial Commemorative Coin Act would require the Secretary of the Treasury to mint coins commemorating the centennial of the official establishment of a national Mother's Day. Proceeds from the sale of these coins would benefit the St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital and the National Osteoporosis Foundation.
One hundred years ago, Anna Jarvis of Grafton, WV, honored her departed mother's life by passing out white carnations. Anna's simple act of personal commemoration in May 1908 grew year after year. Just two years later in 1910, the State of West Virginia recognized Jarvis's efforts and established an official Mother's Day. The first state to do so, West Virginia set a precedent that many soon followed. In 1914, President Woodrow Wilson declared the first national Mother's Day.