Difference between Memorial Day and Veterans Day
History of Memorial Day
Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, was officially proclaimed a holiday on May 5, 1868 and was followed by its first observance on May 30, 1868 at Arlington National Cemetery when flowers were placed on the graves of fallen Union and Confederate soldiers.
The official proclamation was the culmination of many separate gatherings, both spontaneous and planned, in towns and cities throughout the nation. Memorial Day is now celebrated annually in almost every state on the last Monday in May to ensure a three- day weekend for the holiday. Sadly, the traditions of Memorial have diminished over the years, and many Americans today have forgotten the original meaning associated with the holiday. However, public recognition of Memorial Day is still carried out in a big way in some American cities and towns – most notably with the placement of 260,000 small American flags by U.S. soldiers on the gravestones of fallen soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery. Similar acts of remembrance are carried out at gravesites throughout the nation by volunteers.