Crowds lined C Street in Virginia City Monday to celebrate the American worker, during the annual Labor Day parade.

Members of labor unions said the event is a reminder that the national holiday is about a lot more than just furniture sales and barbecues.

"Rather than talking about Labor Day sales here and there, we are emphasizing to get out and support the American worker," Northern Nevada Central Labor Council President Mike Pilcher said. "American workers are among the most productive in the world, and they should be honored for that."

Virginia City has been honoring workers like Pilcher for more than 100 years. Nationally, the first Monday in September was made an official holiday in 1894, when President Grover Cleveland signed it into law. Virginia City's first Labor Day parade was in 1908.

This year's parade held proud union representatives, along with a little bit of campaigning and a little bit of protesting; all a part of the American way.

"It's a celebration of the American worker," Pilcher said, "and the productivity and the continued spirit and the hard work that American laborers have displayed forever to build a strong America."

In fact, a parade is the traditional way to celebrate Labor Day. Before it was even a national holiday, workers in New York marked the occasion by parading through the streets back in 1882.