Memorial Day occurs on the last Monday during the Month of May and while it has come to signify the beginning of the summer season, it is also the solemn time when Americans remember the soldiers that died in military service. Originally named Decoration Day, a reference to a tradition of decorating the graves of the Confederate dead, Memorial Day was officially proclaimed on May 5, 1868 by General John Logan and observed for the first time on May 30th of that same year. The somber occasion came to serve as a gesture of healing after the rancor of the Civil War.
There is frequent confusion between Memorial Day and its companion holiday, Veteran’s Day. The intent of Memorial Day has always been to honor those who have died in American military service, while November 11th, Veterans Day, is for those who have served the U.S. in war and survived. Veteran derives from the Latin veteranus, “old,” and has signified experienced soldiers for centuries. In some parts of the world, Veteran’s Day is known as Remembrance Day and Armistice Day – an armistice is “a temporary suspension of hostilities by agreement of the warring parties.” Armistice Day refers to the agreement that brought an end to World War I on the eleventh hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918.
Do you have any further questions about Memorial Day? Let us know below, and we’ll do our best to answer.
Back to Top