Most, but never all historians say the first observance of Labor Day was on Sept. 5, 1882, when 10,000 workers organized by Carpenters and Joiners Union secretary Peter J. McGuire held a parade in New York City. On Labor Day 2012, the character of the American work force is vastly different.
Working on Labor Day or not, 85% of those 155.2 million employed Americans age 16 to 64 will be covered by health insurance.
About 5.9 million working Americans are fortunate enough to be able to do their labor from home.
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Those who cannot work at home will spend an average of 25.3 minutes a day driving to work, with about 3.2 million of them spending more than 90 minutes a day driving to their jobs. And sadly, 76.6% of all commuters will drive alone.
Finally, in another long-standing tradition of laboring in America - the gender wage gap -- men who work full time will earn a median annual income of $47,715, while women will earn $36,931.