Many government offices are closed within most these states. Some schools are open, so it is best to check with your local school district. Some businesses also remain open. Not all states observe the day on the same date. Lincoln’s Birthday is also absorbed into Presidents’ Day in other parts of the United States, such as Arizona, Maryland, Michigan, Ohio, and West Virginia. It is a legal observance in Florida.
This holiday is legally designated as “Washington’s Birthday”. Though other institutions such as state and local governments and private businesses may use other names, it is the federal government’s policy to always refer to holidays by the names designated in the law.
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While Washington’s Birthday was an unofficial observance for most of the 1800s, it was not until the late 1870s that it became a federal holiday. Senator Steven Wallace Dorsey of Arkansas was the first to propose the measure, and in 1879 President Rutherford B. Hayes signed it into law.
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According to the federal government, the holiday observed on the third Monday in February is officially Washington’s Birthday. But many Americans believe that this holiday is now called “Presidents’ Day,” in honor of both Presidents Washington and Lincoln, whose birthdays are Feb. 22 and Feb. 12, respectively. It turns out that whether you honor one or the other or both of these presidents may depend on where you live.
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Abraham Lincoln may be the greatest of all US presidents. He ended slavery, won the Civil War, and ensured that the United States would remain united in the modern world. His face is printed on the five-dollar bill and stamped on the penny. The Lincoln Memorial is one of the nation’s iconic sites. But Lincoln’s Birthday on Feb. 12 is not a national holiday, and it never has been.