Franklin D. Roosevelt

Statement on Labor Day.

September 04, 1943

Fifty-Six years ago Labor Day was observed for the first time in the United States. Since then we have fought one World War to victory and now are engaged in another and even greater conflict upon the result of which depends the future of freedom-loving people the world over.

With that priceless heritage at stake we are determined that this World War, too, shall result in victory so that life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness shall be the lot of man when he wills it and that he be not the downtrodden serf of brutal Axis masters. That determination is shared by all Americans: by workers, by management, and by farmers.

It is altogether fitting that these groups of free Americans are working today, many laboring on round-the-clock shifts, that our fighting men on land, on sea, and in the air may have the weapons with which to bring about victory as speedily as possible.

To make time and thus save lives and suffering, our American workers, employers, and farmers will need not only to maintain their production pace but to increase it. Their record to date has been magnificent and in keeping with the true American spirit of all-out effort for those fighting so valiantly and so successfully in all parts of the world.

That increased production effort will be forthcoming. It will be given gladly for love of country and for liberty, as it has been given since Pearl Harbor, to set up a record that never has been equaled. We well may be proud of that achievement for it has done much to make possible the successes of the armed forces of the United Nations. Its continuation will spell the defeat of our enemies- the preservation of our way of life.

Franklin D. Roosevelt, Statement on Labor Day. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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