The Significance Of Memorial Day
Listen to Article
Americans will celebrate Memorial Day on May 29, 2023. The federal holiday is observed annually on the last Monday in May. It honors all military personnel who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces. This includes the men and women in the Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, and Navy.
The first national Memorial Day celebration is credited to John A. Logan. On May 30, 1868, the former civil war general led a group of 5,000 to Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia. They placed American flags and flowers on the graves of the 20,000 Union and Confederate soldiers buried there. Some historians believe Logan chose the date because it did not fall on the anniversary of any Civil War battle. Others think it was selected because flowers would be in bloom throughout the country. This would make it easy to decorate the graves.
By 1890, all the Northern States had adopted what was then called Decoration Day. But the Southern States continued to honor their dead soldiers on different days. They only began observing the holiday after it was extended to include the soldiers killed in World War I. Texas, Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana still have a separate holiday to commemorate their perished Confederate soldiers.
In 1968, the US Congress declared Memorial Day a federal holiday. The lawmakers also moved the date to the last Monday in May so that Americans could enjoy a three-day weekend. The change has caused the holiday to lose some significance. Kids think of Memorial Day as the start of summer, while adults see it as an opportunity to shop for bargains.
In December 2000, President Bill Clinton signed the National Moment of Remembrance Act to remind Americans of the holiday's real meaning. The law urges citizens to observe a minute of silence at 3:00 pm (local time) to honor the brave men and women who have sacrificed their lives for the safety and freedom of the country. This Memorial Day, take a minute from your busy schedule to pay your respects to the fallen heroes.
Resources: Military.com, Wikipedia.org, History.com
Get the Workbook for this article!Workbook contains: Article, Reading Comprehension, Critical Thinking Questions, Vocabulary in Context (+ answers), Multiple Choice Quiz (+ answers), Parts of Speech Quiz (+ answers), Vocabulary Game (+ answers)
Learn Keywords in this Article
- aloha_paradiseabout 22 hoursMy dad was in the Military. He's still alive. Every Memorial Day, my dad will go to my grandpas grave stone and clean it and put flowers on it to make it look nice.
- aloha_paradiseabout 22 hoursMy grandpa died in a motorcycle accident.😭😭😭
- footballgirl1233 daysLots of people that I know think of Memorial Day as a day off from school and not anything else. I'm glad it has been getting more attention this year.
- cooldog33 daysthis is Memorial day to celebrate the one who died serving the armed forces. Not veterans day for those who retired from the armed forces
- jakasolacidu3 daysMy grandpa was a veteran but he dead
- halalboy1994 daysThank You Canadian Soldiers for doing your duty! 🇨🇦
- jakasolacidu3 dayscool
- colechri7014 dayshonnor those who died
- west23eat5 daysMy dad is veteran and is still alive.
- nrosgood4 daysSame with my uncle, Both Grandpas, and three great grandpas.
- tennislover5 daysHonor those who served us🎖
- ubereats27 daysMy grandfather was a veteran and is still alive. THOUGH my great grandfather was a veteran and died. God Bless Him
- vykukuzucagi7 daysHappy early mamorial day