Washington’s “Legislatively Recognized Days”

Everyone knows the major holidays observed by the country (and consequently the state). However, Washington’s Legislature has created a list of “legislatively recognized days.” They are listed below. And sorry, the statute specifically states they “may not be considered legal holidays for any purpose.” So no time off. Here are the dates and days (RCW 1.16.050):

(a) The thirteenth day of January, recognized as Korean-­American day;

(b) The twelfth day of October, recognized as Columbus day;

(c) The ninth day of April, recognized as former prisoner of war recognition day;

(d) The twenty­-sixth day of January, recognized as Washington army and air national guard day;

(e) The seventh day of August, recognized as purple heart recipient recognition day;

(f) The second Sunday in October, recognized as Washington state children’s day;

(g) The sixteenth day of April, recognized as Mother Joseph day;

(h) The fourth day of September, recognized as Marcus Whitman day;

(i) The seventh day of December, recognized as Pearl Harbor remembrance day;

(j) The twenty-­seventh day of July, recognized as national Korean war veterans armistice day;

(k) The nineteenth day of February, recognized as civil liberties day of remembrance;

(l) The nineteenth day of June, recognized as Juneteenth, a day of remembrance for the day the slaves learned of their freedom; and

(m) The thirtieth day of March, recognized as welcome home Vietnam veterans day.


Columbus Day

Regardless of the actions of the Seattle City Council, the second Monday in October is designated by Congress as Columbus Day. That law was enacted in 1998 and is codified at 36 U.S.C. 107 (forgive the non-Bluebook format). The phraseology of the statute is intriguing. Perhaps in a nod to the separation of powers, it reads: “The President is requested to issue each year a proclamation . . .” Or perhaps the people in Washington were more cordial back in the 1990’s. Regardless, Happy Columbus Day and Happy Indigenous People’s Day too.




Screen Shot 2014-02-01 at 3.48.27 PMIt is a time of year with a smattering of holidays–although not “the holidays.”  Didn’t you think we celebrated President’s Day in February–a combination of Washington and Lincoln’s birthdays?  We don’t.  The holiday is Washington’s birthday.  Of course you know we added Martin Luther King’s birthday as a holiday (in 1983).  Did you know that Columbus Day was added in 1968 and Veteran’s Day moved from October to November in 1975?  It’s fascinating stuff.  And it is all part of the United States Code (and the legislative history notes to it), specifically 5 U.S.C. 6103.  A good read:  the United States Code.


Holiday Gifts for Lawyers

Did you know there are vendors who specialize in gifts for lawyers? One such vendor is For Counsel whose offerings include desktop items, clothing, artwork, and even gifts for babies and toddlers. It’s a simple way for you to put the law in your hol-law-day.