A day that was once known as Decoration Day has evolved into “the unofficial start of summer”, something that the founders probably never even dreamed would occur. Decoration Day was established by the Grand Army of the Republic three years after the Civil War as a time to remember our war dead by decorating their graves with flowers.
Today Memorial Day is set aside by most people as a time to head to the lake, the mountains, the beach or the hometown to celebrate with picnics and barbeques. Memorial Day is celebrated, not so much as a day to honor our fallen, but as a time to spend with family and friends.
The following websites contain information about the history of Memorial Day. May you enjoy the upcoming holiday weekend, and may you spend a part of it remembering our veterans from all of our wars who fought for our freedoms.
- Historical Perspective of Memorial Day – http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=4672349
- Website from the History Channel – http://www.history.com/topics/memorial-day-history
- United States Department of Veteran Affairs – http://www1.va.gov/opa/speceven/memday/history.asp
- Library of Congress – American Memory – http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/today/may30.html
- A group working to restore the traditional day of observance for Memorial Day – http://www.usmemorialday.org/backgrnd.html