Citizenship Day is an outgrowth of two earlier patriotic celebrations. As the anniversary of the signing of the Constitution of the United States in 1787, September 17 was first observed in Philadelphia shortly after the outbreak of the Civil War as Constitution Day. Then in 1940 Congress set aside the third Sunday in May as ”I Am an American” Day, which honored those who had become U.S. citizens during the preceding year. The two holidays were combined in 1952 and called Citizenship Day. A number of states and cities hold special exercises on September 17 to focus attention on the rights and obligations of citizenship. Schools make a special effort to acquaint their students with the history and importance of the Constitution. Naturalization ceremonies, re-creations of the signing of the Constitution, and parades are other popular ways of celebrating Citizenship Day. Several states observe the entire week in which this day occurs as Constitution Week.
Additional information about Holidays, Festivals, and Celebrations of the World, including an explanation of calendar systems around the world; facts about the U.S. states and territories; U.S. presidents; legal holidays by state and by country; domestic and international tourism sources; bibliography; and the chronological, special subject, and general indexes can be found in Holidays Around the World 2018, 6th Ed.