What Is The Anna Jarvis House?

June 24, 2024

Who was Anna Jarvis?

Anna Jarvis was a historic figure in American history. Born on May 1, 1864 in Webster, West Virginia, Anna was the founder of Mother's Day in the US. She led the movement after her own mother's death, as she herself always expressed a wish to have a holiday as such. It was a nice way to honor her mother's life. (Keep reading to see why Anna Jarvis has her own historic house.)

Credit: Google Earth

Despite being the founder of Mother's Day, Anna herself grew bitter about the holiday. She felt that over the years the holiday became commercialized, and it lacked the integrity and true meaning of celebrating mothers. She also didn't like how the greeting card companies started creating Mother's Day cards, as she was quoted: "A printed card means nothing except you are too lazy to write to the woman who has done more for you than anyone in the world." Can't really argue with that logic.

Anna was so disillusioned that in 1943 she began to organize a petition to abolish Mother's Day. Her efforts were stopped however when she was committed to Marshall Square Sanitarium. No concrete reason was given for this, however people connected to the floral and greeting card companies paid the bills to the sanitorium to keep her there. 

 

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It seems that these companies obviously benefited from the constant busy season of Mother's Day, and definitely didn't want it to end. Sadly, in 1948 Anna passed away in the sanatorium.

What Is The Anna Jarvis House?

The Anna Jarvis House is a historic house located in West Virginia. Built in 1854, the home is designed in an I-house, which is a vernacular type house popular in the colonial period.

 

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The home is made of wood and features two stories. Anna's father, Granville E. Jarvis had it built. The front of the exterior has a charming white porch that sits above a half flight of painted white stairs. 

 

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Not only was this the birthplace of Anna Jarvis, but the historic house was also the first headquarters for Civil War General

George B. McClellan's 1861 campaign. In 1979 the Anna Jarvis House was officially listed on the National Register of Historic Places. 

 

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How do you feel about Anna Jarvis?
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Conclusion: Bittersweet Holiday

I'm not going to lie, reading about the passion Anna Jarvis had for Mother's Day, and her downfall, it makes me think twice before I buy another greeting card for Mother's Day. 

If you enjoyed checking out the Anna Jarvis House, take a look at another historic home, the Heyward-Washington house here.

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Julie Bowes
Meet Julie, the creative Head of Content at Urban Splatter. Since her move from the East Coast to Los Angeles in 2017, she's been bringing the world of celebrity real estate to life through her engaging articles. Julie has honed her passion for storytelling into a thriving full-time career, producing innovative content ideas and contributing to multiple websites. With a self-published book and several novels to her name, she's continuously expanding her horizons in the freelance writing sphere.

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