Earth Day was founded 41 years ago today as an environmental teach-in by Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson. Inspired by campus activism of the late 1960s, he organized students across the country to devote April 22, 1970 to speaking out about pollution and ecological crises. Twenty years later, the teach-in’s coordinator Denis Hayes made Earth Day international, organizing events in 141 countries. Today, it’s designated by the United Nations as “International Mother Earth Day.” Here’s a few images from the first celebration. Remember hand-drawn balloon type with Magic Markers?
Of course, founders couldn't have predicted how many retailers would learn to enhance their own green by celebrating with enviro-tie-in promotions.