HOW “DECORATION DAY” BECAME “MEMORIAL DAY”

HOW “DECORATION DAY” BECAME “MEMORIAL DAY”

The practice of decorating soldiers’ graves is an ancient one.poppy

Reports and discussions describing the history of Memorial day in the United States suggests it evolved during and after the Civil War. The practice of devoting a day for decorating soldiers’ graves appears to have begun in the South; and was later copied in the North. There was no common agreement with regard to what day the soldiers should be honored.

The practice of honoring soldiers killed by their countrymen in the Civil War war was not given a specific name and day until May 5, 1868 when General John A. Logan issued a proclamation calling for “Decoration Day” to be observed annually and nationwide.

The call for local communities in the South and North to agree upon a common day for decorating the graves of all soldiers who died in the Civil War asked people to look beyond the reasons why the soldiers had fought that war in order to commemorate their deaths.

“Memorial Day” was first used as a synonym for “Decoration Day” in 1882. But “Decoration Day” was not changed to “Memorial Day” officially  until 1967.

Funny, that I do not recall the official name change. 1967 was the year I graduated from high school in Bettendorf, Iowa. The United States was in the midst of the Vietnam War.

Maybe the reason I cannot remember is because we, the people, had already changed the name before the government got around to memorializing it.

Did you know the United States has been at war with some other country or nation for 221 years out of its 235 calendar years of its existence?

If not, check out this article or this blog. Here is a list of the wars in which our soldiers have fought and died.

Undoubtedly many of these wars were justly fought to preserve the ideals we as American’s cherish.  But, were all?

Hopefully, in memorializing – remembering – we will reflect upon what those who have given their lives have died for.  If the pain and sorrow brought by their deaths have given us cause to reflect on how to better love our worldly neighbors, and avoid future conflict – we will do well – and those remembered have done well.

(I originally wrote and published this post entitled “How Decoration Day became Memorial Day” on  May 25, 2015.)

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About Scott . Stafne

Mr. Stafne is very experienced in property rights, including banking wrongs and foreclosure prevention; Constitutional Law (under the United States and Washington State Constitution); Appellate law; land use law; personal injury law. Scott has recently become a media focal point as his win record of foreclosure defense cases against the largest financial institutions, servicers, trustees as well as MERS have blazed the trail toward ending the foreclosure crisis and representing the rights of the homeowner above the profits and secret dealings of corporations.   Scott sees law as a foundation for establishing a system of twenty first century liberties for the people; and for removing that corruption of power within our government which makes the achievement of real purpose beholden to only money.   Scott Stafne has been an attorney since graduating from the University of Iowa in 1974. He worked for a large law firm in Indianapolis (Baker & Daniels) for two years. Thereafter, he moved to Seattle Washington in order to obtain a Masters of Law degree from the University of Washington, which he obtained in 1977. Scott practiced law while going to graduate school and has practiced ever since.   This is a personal blog, and does not constitute legal advice in any form, and is not necessarily reflective of the policies or opinions of Stafne Law Firm. Visit the Law Firm: http://stafnetrumbull.com Visit the Google+ Page: https://plus.google.com/+ScottStafne Visit the Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/scott.stafne.75   *Web Developer: David J. Posel
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