The Info List - Memorial Day

Memorial Day
Memorial Day
or Decoration Day is a federal holiday in the United States for remembering the people who died while serving in the country's armed forces.[1] The holiday, which is currently observed every year on the last Monday of May, will be held on May 28, 2018. The holiday was held on May 30 from 1868 to 1970.[2] It marks the start of the unofficial summer vacation season,[3] while Labor Day marks its end. The holiday, from latest to earliest, is slightly more likely to fall on May 30, May 28 or May 25 (58 in 400 years each) than on May 27 or May 26 (57), and slightly less likely to occur on May 31 or May 29 (56). Many people visit cemeteries and memorials, particularly to honor those who have died in military service. Many volunteers place an American flag on each grave in national cemeteries. Memorial Day
Memorial Day
is not to be confused with Veterans
Day – Memorial Day is a day of remembering the men and women who died while serving, whereas Veterans Day
Veterans Day
celebrates the service of all U.S. military veterans.[4]


1 History

1.1 In the North 1.2 In the South 1.3 At Gettysburg

2 Name and date 3 20th century

3.1 Poppies

4 As civil religious holiday 5 In film, literature, and music

5.1 Films 5.2 Music 5.3 Poetry

6 Observance dates (1971–present) 7 See also 8 References 9 Further reading 10 External links


1870 Decoration Day parade in St. Paul, Minnesota

The practice of decorating soldiers' graves with flowers is an ancient custom.[5] Soldiers' graves were decorated in the U.S. before[6] and during the American Civil War. Some believe that an annual cemetery decoration practice began before the American Civil War
American Civil War
and thus may reflect the real origin of the "memorial day" idea.[7] Annual Decoration Days for particular cemeteries are still held on a Sunday in late spring or early summer in some rural areas of the American South, notably in the mountain areas. In cases involving a family graveyard where remote ancestors as well as those who were deceased more recently are buried, this may take on the character of an extended family reunion to which some people travel hundreds of miles. People gather, put flowers on graves and renew contacts with relatives and others. There often is a religious service and a picnic-like "dinner on the grounds," the traditional term for a potluck meal at a church.[7] On June 3, 1861, Warrenton, Virginia
Warrenton, Virginia
was the location of the first Civil War soldier's grave ever to be decorated, according to a Richmond Times-Dispatch newspaper article in 1906.[8] In 1862, women in Savannah, Georgia
Savannah, Georgia
decorated Confederate soldiers' graves according to the Savannah Republican.[9] The 1863 cemetery dedication at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, was a ceremony of commemoration at the graves of dead soldiers. On July 4, 1864, ladies decorated soldiers' graves according to local historians in Boalsburg, Pennsylvania.[10] and Boalsburg promotes itself as the birthplace of Memorial Day.[11] In April 1865, following President Abraham Lincoln's assassination, commemorations were ubiquitous. The more than 600,000 soldiers of both sides who died in the Civil War meant that burial and memorialization took on new cultural significance. Under the leadership of women during the war, an increasingly formal practice of decorating graves had taken shape. In 1865, the federal government began creating national military cemeteries for the Union war dead.[12] A decoration day observance on May 1, 1865, in Charleston, South Carolina led historian David W. Blight to claim that "African Americans invented Memorial Day
Memorial Day
in Charleston, South Carolina",[13] based on accounts in the Charleston Daily Courier and coverage by the New-York Tribune. In 2012, Blight stated that he "has no evidence" that the event in Charleston inspired the establishment of Memorial Day across the country.[14] Accordingly, Snopes
labeled the claim that the holiday began in Charleston "false."[15] In 1868, General John A. Logan
John A. Logan
of the Grand Army of the Republic, an organization of Union veterans founded in Decatur, Illinois, established Decoration Day as a time for the nation to decorate the graves of the Union war dead with flowers.[16] By the 20th century, various Union and Confederate memorial traditions, celebrated on different days, merged, and Memorial Day
Memorial Day
eventually extended to honor all Americans who died while in the military service.[1] On May 26, 1966, President Lyndon B. Johnson
Lyndon B. Johnson
designated an "official" birthplace of the holiday by signing the presidential proclamation naming Waterloo, New York, as the holder of the title. This action followed House Concurrent Resolution 587, in which the 89th Congress had officially recognized that the patriotic tradition of observing Memorial Day
Memorial Day
had begun one hundred years prior in Waterloo, New York.[17] The village credits druggist Henry C. Welles and county clerk John B. Murray as the founders of the holiday. Snopes
and Live Science discredit the Waterloo account.[18][19] In the North[edit]

The Tomb of the Unknowns
Tomb of the Unknowns
located in Arlington National Cemetery

On May 5, 1868, General John A. Logan
John A. Logan
issued a proclamation calling for "Decoration Day" to be observed annually and nationwide; he was commander-in-chief of the Grand Army of the Republic, the veterans' organization for Union Civil War veterans.[7] With his proclamation, Logan adopted the Memorial Day
Memorial Day
practice that had begun in the Southern states three years earlier.[20][21][22] The first northern Memorial Day
Memorial Day
was observed on May 30, 1868. One author claims that the date was chosen because it was not the anniversary of any particular battle.[23] According to a White House address in 2010, the date was chosen as the optimal date for flowers to be in bloom in the North.[24]

Memorial Day, Boston by Henry Sandham

The northern states quickly adopted the holiday. In 1868, memorial events were held in 183 cemeteries in 27 states, and 336 in 1869.[25] In 1871, Michigan made "Decoration Day" an official state holiday and by 1890, every northern state had followed suit. The ceremonies were sponsored by the Women's Relief Corps, the women's auxiliary of the Grand Army of the Republic
Grand Army of the Republic
(GAR), which had 100,000 members. By 1870, the remains of nearly 300,000 Union dead had been reinterred in 73 national cemeteries, located near major battlefields and thus mainly in the South. The most famous are Gettysburg National Cemetery
Gettysburg National Cemetery
in Pennsylvania and Arlington National Cemetery, near Washington, DC.[26] Memorial Day
Memorial Day
speeches became an occasion for veterans, politicians, and ministers to commemorate the Civil War and, at first, to rehash the "atrocities" of the enemy. They mixed religion and celebratory nationalism for the people to make sense of their history in terms of sacrifice for a better nation. People of all religious beliefs joined together and the point was often made that the German and Irish soldiers had become true Americans in the "baptism of blood" on the battlefield.[27] Since 1868 Doylestown, Pennsylvania
Doylestown, Pennsylvania
has run annual Memorial Day parades which it claims to be the nation's oldest continuously running; however, the Memorial Day
Memorial Day
parade in Rochester, Wisconsin predates Doylestown's by one year.[28][29] In the South[edit]

Confederate Memorial Monument in Montgomery, Alabama

The U.S. National Park Service[30] and numerous scholars attribute the beginning of a Memorial Day
Memorial Day
practice in the South to the ladies of Columbus, Georgia.[31][32][33][34][35][36][37] On April 25, 1866, women in Columbus, Mississippi
Columbus, Mississippi
laid flowers on the graves of both the Union and Confederate dead in the city's cemetery.[38] The early southern Memorial Day
Memorial Day
celebrations were simple, somber occasions for veterans and their families to honor the dead and tend to local cemeteries.[39] Historians acknowledge the Ladies Memorial Association
Ladies Memorial Association
played a key role in these rituals of preservation of Confederate "memory."[40] Various dates ranging from April 25 to mid-June were adopted in different Southern states. Across the South, associations were founded, many by women, to establish and care for permanent cemeteries for the Confederate dead, organize commemorative ceremonies, and sponsor appropriate monuments as a permanent way of remembering the Confederate dead. The most important of these was the United Daughters of the Confederacy, which grew from 17,000 members in 1900 to nearly 100,000 women by World War I. They were "strikingly successful at raising money to build Confederate monuments, lobbying legislatures and Congress for the reburial of Confederate dead, and working to shape the content of history textbooks."[41] In 1868, some southerners appended the label "Confederate" to what they originally called "Memorial Day" after northerners co-opted the holiday.[42] The tradition of observances were linked to the South, they served as the prototype for the national day of memory embraced by the nation in 1868.[30][43] By 1890, there was a shift from the emphasis on honoring specific soldiers to a public commemoration of the Confederate south.[39] Changes in the ceremony's hymns and speeches reflect an evolution of the ritual into a symbol of cultural renewal and conservatism in the South. By 1913, David Blight argues, the theme of American nationalism shared equal time with the Confederate.[44] At Gettysburg[edit]

Soldiers National Monument at the center of Gettysburg National Cemetery

Starting in 1868, the ceremonies and Memorial Day
Memorial Day
address at Gettysburg National Park
Gettysburg National Park
became nationally known. In July 1913, veterans of the United States
United States
and Confederate armies gathered in Gettysburg to commemorate the fifty-year anniversary of the Civil War's bloodiest and most famous battle.[45] The four-day "Blue-Gray Reunion" featured parades, re-enactments, and speeches from a host of dignitaries, including President Woodrow Wilson, the first Southerner elected to the White House
White House
after the War.[citation needed] James Heflin of Alabama
gave the main address.[citation needed] Heflin was a noted orator; His choice as Memorial Day
Memorial Day
speaker was criticized, as he was opposed for his support of segregation; however, his speech was moderate in tone and stressed national unity and goodwill, gaining him praise from newspapers.[citation needed] Since the cemetery dedication at Gettysburg occurred on November 19, that day (or the closest weekend) has been designated as their own local memorial day that is referred to as Remembrance Day.[46] Name and date[edit]

"On Decoration Day" Political cartoon c. 1900 by John T. McCutcheon. Caption: "You bet I'm goin' to be a soldier, too, like my Uncle David, when I grow up."

The preferred name for the holiday gradually changed from "Decoration Day" to "Memorial Day," which was first used in 1882.[47] Memorial Day did not become the more common name until after World War II, and was not declared the official name by Federal law until 1967.[48] On June 28, 1968, Congress passed the Uniform Monday Holiday Act, which moved four holidays, including Memorial Day, from their traditional dates to a specified Monday in order to create a convenient three-day weekend.[49] The change moved Memorial Day
Memorial Day
from its traditional May 30 date to the last Monday in May. The law took effect at the federal level in 1971.[49] After some initial confusion and unwillingness to comply, all 50 states adopted Congress' change of date within a few years. Memorial Day
Memorial Day
endures as a holiday which most businesses observe because it marks the unofficial beginning of summer. The Veterans
of Foreign Wars (VFW) and Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War
Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War
(SUVCW) advocate returning to the original date, although the significance of the date is tenuous. The VFW stated in a 2002 Memorial Day
Memorial Day

Changing the date merely to create three-day weekends has undermined the very meaning of the day. No doubt, this has contributed a lot to the general public's nonchalant observance of Memorial Day.[50]

Starting in 1987 Hawaii's Senator Daniel Inouye, a World War II veteran, introduced a measure to return Memorial Day
Memorial Day
to its traditional date. Inouye continued introducing the resolution until his death in 2012.[51] 20th century[edit] On Memorial Day, the flag of the United States
United States
is raised briskly to the top of the staff and then solemnly lowered to the half-staff position, where it remains only until noon.[52] It is then raised to full-staff for the remainder of the day.[53]

Memorial Day
Memorial Day
observances in small New England
New England
towns are often marked by dedications and remarks by veterans, state legislators, and selectmen.

The half-staff position remembers the more than one million men and women who gave their lives in service of their country. At noon, their memory is raised by the living, who resolve not to let their sacrifice be in vain, but to rise up in their stead and continue the fight for liberty and justice for all. The National Memorial Day Concert
National Memorial Day Concert
takes place[when?] on the west lawn of the United States
United States
Capitol.[54] The concert is broadcast on PBS and NPR. Music is performed, and respect is paid to the men and women who gave their lives for their country. For many Americans, the central event is attending one of the thousands of parades held on Memorial Day
Memorial Day
in large and small cities all over the country.[according to whom?] Most of these feature marching bands and an overall military theme with the National Guard and other servicemen participating along with veterans and military vehicles from various wars.[citation needed] One of the longest-standing traditions is the running of the Indianapolis 500, an auto race which has been held in conjunction with Memorial Day
Memorial Day
since 1911.[55] Originally it was held on Memorial Day itself, and since 1974 it runs on the Sunday preceding the Memorial Day holiday. Since 1961 NASCAR's Coca-Cola 600
Coca-Cola 600
has been held during Memorial Day
Memorial Day
weekend, and has also been held on the previous Sunday since 1974.[citation needed] Since 1976 The Memorial Tournament
Memorial Tournament
golf event has been held on or close to the Memorial Day
Memorial Day
weekend.[citation needed] The final of the NCAA Division I Men's Lacrosse Championship is held on Memorial Day.[citation needed] In 2000, Congress passed the National Moment of Remembrance
National Moment of Remembrance
Act, asking people to stop and remember at 3:00 PM.[56] Poppies[edit] Main article: Remembrance poppy In 1915, following the Second Battle of Ypres, Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, a physician with the Canadian Expeditionary Force, wrote the poem, "In Flanders Fields". Its opening lines refer to the fields of poppies that grew among the soldiers' graves in Flanders. In 1918, inspired by the poem, YWCA worker Moina Michael
Moina Michael
attended a YWCA Overseas War Secretaries' conference wearing a silk poppy pinned to her coat and distributed over two dozen more to others present. In 1920, the National American Legion adopted it as their official symbol of remembrance.[57] As civil religious holiday[edit] Scholars,[58][59][60][61] following the lead of sociologist Robert Bellah, often make the argument that the United States
United States
has a secular "civil religion" – one with no association with any religious denomination or viewpoint – that has incorporated Memorial Day
Memorial Day
as a sacred event. With the Civil War, a new theme of death, sacrifice and rebirth enters the civil religion. Memorial Day
Memorial Day
gave ritual expression to these themes, integrating the local community into a sense of nationalism. The American civil religion, in contrast to that of France, was never anticlerical or militantly secular; in contrast to Britain, it was not tied to a specific denomination, such as the Church of England. The Americans borrowed from different religious traditions so that the average American saw no conflict between the two, and deep levels of personal motivation were aligned with attaining national goals.[62] Memorial Day
Memorial Day
has been called a "modern cult of the dead". It incorporates Christian themes of sacrifice while uniting citizens of various faiths.[63] In film, literature, and music[edit] Films[edit]

Memorial Day
Memorial Day
(2012) is a war film starring James Cromwell, Jonathan Bennett, and John Cromwell. Logan Lucky (2017) starring Channing Tatum


Charles Ives's symphonic poem Decoration Day depicted the holiday as he experienced it in his childhood, with his father's band leading the way to the town cemetery, the playing of "Taps" on a trumpet, and a livelier march tune on the way back to the town. It is frequently played with three other Ives works based on holidays, as the second movement of A Symphony: New England
New England

Poetry[edit] Poems commemorating Memorial Day
Memorial Day

Michael Anania's "Memorial Day" (1994)[64] Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's "Decoration Day" (1882)[65] Joyce Kilmer's "Memorial Day"

Observance dates (1971–present)[edit]

Year Memorial Day

1972 2000 2028 2056 2084

May 29

1973 2001 2029 2057 2085

May 28

1974 2002 2030 2058 2086

May 27

1975 2003 2031 2059 2087

May 26

1976 2004 2032 2060 2088 2100 May 31

1977 2005 2033 2061 2089 2101 May 30

1978 2006 2034 2062 2090 2102 May 29

1979 2007 2035 2063 2091 2103 May 28

1980 2008 2036 2064 2092 2104 May 26

1981 2009 2037 2065 2093 2105 May 25

1982 2010 2038 2066 2094 2106 May 31

1983 2011 2039 2067 2095 2107 May 30

1984 2012 2040 2068 2096 2108 May 28

1985 2013 2041 2069 2097 2109 May 27

1986 2014 2042 2070 2098 2110 May 26

1987 2015 2043 2071 2099 2111 May 25

1988 2016 2044 2072

2112 May 30

1989 2017 2045 2073

2113 May 29

1990 2018 2046 2074

2114 May 28

1991 2019 2047 2075

2115 May 27

1992 2020 2048 2076

2116 May 25

1993 2021 2049 2077

2117 May 31

1994 2022 2050 2078

2118 May 30

1995 2023 2051 2079

2119 May 29

1996 2024 2052 2080

2120 May 27

1997 2025 2053 2081

2121 May 26

1998 2026 2054 2082

2122 May 25

1971 1999 2027 2055 2083

2123 May 31

See also[edit]

Military of the United States
United States
portal Holidays portal

A Great Jubilee Day, first held the last Monday in May 1783 (American Revolutionary War) ANZAC Day, an analogous observance in Australia and New Zealand on April 25 every year Armistice Day Confederate Memorial Day Remembrance of the Dead
Remembrance of the Dead
("Dodenherdenking"), every year on May 4, commemorates all civilians and members of the armed forces of the Kingdom of the Netherlands who have died in wars or peacekeeping missions since the outbreak of World War II. Heroes' Day Memorial Day
Memorial Day
massacre of 1937 Nora Fontaine Davidson, credited with the first Memorial Day
Memorial Day
ceremony in Petersburg, Virginia Patriot Day United States
United States
military casualties of war Remembrance Day, an analogous observance in Canada, the United Kingdom, and many other Commonwealth nations held on November 11 each year Volkstrauertag
( "People's Mourning Day" ), usually in November two Sundays ahead of 1. Advent, inaugurated in Germany in 1919 by the Weimar Republic, the German version of Memorial Day
Memorial Day
celebrated in the Weimar Republic
Weimar Republic
and since 1949 in West Germany, a holiday with democratic context strictly different from the Imperial and Nazi-Era "Heldengedenktag", usually with a special event including the President in Bundestag


^ a b "Memorial Day". United States
United States
Department of Veterans
Affairs. Archived from the original on May 27, 2010. Retrieved May 28, 2010.  ^ 36 U.S.C. § 116 ^ Yan, Holly. " Memorial Day
Memorial Day
2016: What you need to know". CNN. Retrieved May 31, 2016.  ^ Kickler, Sarah (May 28, 2012). " Memorial Day
Memorial Day
vs. Veterans
Day". baltimoresun.com. Retrieved April 7, 2014.  ^ Mary L'Hommedieu Gardiner (1842). "The Ladies Garland". J. Libby. p. 296. Retrieved May 31, 2014.  ^ In 1817, for example, a writer in the Analectic Magazine of Philadelphia urged the decoration of patriot's graves. E.J., "The Soldier's Grave," in The Analectic Magazine (1817), Vol. 10, 264. ^ a b c Alan Jabbour; Karen Singer Jabbour (May 31, 2010). Decoration Day in the Mountains: Traditions of Cemetery Decoration in the Southern Appalachians. Univ of North Carolina Press. p. 125. ISBN 978-0-8078-3397-1. Retrieved May 28, 2012.  ^ "Times-Dispatch, 1906". Perseus.tufts.edu. July 15, 1906. Retrieved April 7, 2014.  ^ ""A Beautiful Tribute", July 21, 1862". .uttyler.edu. Retrieved May 28, 2012.  ^ "Sophie Keller Hall, in The Story of Our Regiment: A History of the 148th Pennsylvania Vols., ed. J. W. Muffly (Des Moines: The Kenyon Printing & Mfg. Co., 1904), quoted in editor's note, p. 45". Civilwarcenter.olemiss.edu. Retrieved May 28, 2012.  ^ "Boalsburg.com". Boalsburg.com. March 26, 1997. Retrieved May 28, 2012.  ^ Joan Waugh; Gary W. Gallagher (June 1, 2009). Wars Within a War: Controversy and Conflict Over the American Civil War. Univ of North Carolina Press. p. 187. ISBN 978-0-8078-3275-2.  ^ Blight, David W. "Lecture: To Appomattox and Beyond: The End of the War and a Search for Meanings, Overview". Oyc.yale.edu. Retrieved May 31, 2014. Professor Blight closes his lecture with a description of the first Memorial Day, celebrated by African Americans in Charleston, SC 1865.  ^ David Blight, cited by Campbell Robertson, "Birthplace of Memorial Day? That Depends Where You're From," New York Times, May 28, 2012 – Blight quote from 2nd web page: "He has called that the first Memorial Day, as it predated most of the other contenders, though he said he has no evidence that it led to General Logan's call for a national holiday." ^ Snopes
Snopes.com, not dated ^ Affairs, Office of Public and Intergovernmental. "Memorial Day History – Office of Public Affairs". va.gov. Archived from the original on January 16, 2016.  ^ Johnson, Lyndon. "Presidential Proclamation 3727". Retrieved May 27, 2013.  ^ Snopes: Memorial Day
Memorial Day
Origins Snopes.com, not dated ^ The True Story Behind the First Memorial Day
Memorial Day
livescience.com, n.d. ^ General John Logan, quoted by his wife. Books.google.com. 1913. Retrieved April 7, 2014.  ^ "A Complicated Journey: The Story of Logan and Memorial Day" Tom English, The Southern Illinoisian, May 22, 2015 ^ "Memorial Day's Roots Traced To Georgia" Michael Jones, Northwest Herald, May 23, 2015. ^ Hennig Cohen; Tristram Potter Coffin (1991). The Folklore of American holidays. Gale Research. p. 215. ISBN 9780810376021.  ^ "Barack Obama, Weekly Address, May 29, 2010, transcript". Whitehouse.gov. May 29, 2010. Archived from the original on April 24, 2014. Retrieved April 7, 2014.  ^ Blight (2004), pp. 99–100 ^ "Interments in Department of Veterans
Affairs (VA) National Cemeteries" (PDF). Washington, DC: National Cemetery Administration – Department of Veterans
Affairs VA-NCA-IS-1. January 2011. After the Civil War, search and recovery teams visited hundreds of battlefields, churchyards, plantations and other locations seeking wartime interments that were made in haste. By 1870, the remains of nearly 300,000 Civil War dead were reinterred in 73 national cemeteries.  ^ Samito, Christian G. (2009). Becoming American Under Fire: Irish Americans, African Americans, and the Politics of Citizenship During the Civil War Era. Cornell University Press. p. 126. ISBN 978-0-8014-4846-1. Retrieved May 25, 2014.  ^ aaron.knapp@journaltimes.com, AARON KNAPP. "Rochester commemorates fallen soldiers in 150th Memorial Day
Memorial Day
parade". Journal Times. Retrieved June 1, 2017.  ^ says, Lisa. "Doylestown Hosts Oldest Memorial Day
Memorial Day
Parade In The Country". Retrieved June 1, 2017.  ^ a b National Park Service, "Flowers For Jennie" Retrieved February 24, 2015 ^ Daniel Bellware and Richard Gardiner, The Genesis of the Memorial Day Holiday in America (Columbus State University, 2014). ^ Gary Gallagher, The Myth of the Lost Cause and Civil War History, p. 190 ^ Kristina Dunn Johnson, No Holier Spot of Ground, p. 33 ^ Michael Kammen (Pulitzer Prize Winner), Mystic Chords of Memory, New York, Knopf 1991, 103. ^ Tom English, "A Complicated Journey," The Southern Illinoisian, May 22, 2015. ^ Mrs. Logan's Memoirs, p. 246. Books.google.com. 1913. Retrieved April 7, 2014.  ^ "Birthplace of Memorial Day? That Depends Where You're From". The New York Times. May 27, 2012.  ^ "Did You Know? Little known Mississippi Facts". US Genealogy Network. Archived from the original on May 31, 2010. Retrieved May 28, 2010.  ^ a b University of Michigan; EBSCO Publishing (Firm) (2000). America, history and life. Clio Press. p. 190.  ^ Karen L. Cox (2003). Dixie's Daughters: The United Daughters of the Confederacy and the Preservation of Confederate Culture. Universbuttse Memorial Day. ISBN 9780813031330.  ^ Blight (2001), Race and Reunion, pp. 272–73 ^ Gardiner and Bellware, p. 87 ^ Lucian Lamar Knight, "Memorial Day: Its True History". Books.google.com. 1914. Retrieved May 28, 2012.  ^ David W. Blight (2001). Race and Reunion: The Civil War in American Memory. Harvard U.P. p. 265. ISBN 9780674022096.  ^ Warren Leon; Roy Rosenzweig (June 1, 1989). History Museums in the United States: A Critical Assessment. University of Illinois Press. p. 140. ISBN 978-0-252-06064-9.  ^ Glenn W. LaFantasie (March 1, 2008). Gettysburg Heroes: Perfect Soldiers, Hallowed Ground. Indiana University Press. p. 46. ISBN 978-0-253-35071-8.  ^ Henry Perkins Goddard; Calvin Goddard Zon (2008). The Good Fight That Didn't End: Henry P. Goddard's Accounts of Civil War and Peace. Univ of South Carolina Press. p. 285. ISBN 978-1-57003-772-6.  ^ Alan Axelrod (June 1, 2007). Miracle at Belleau Wood: The Birth of the Modern U.S. Marine Corps. Globe Pequot. p. 233. ISBN 978-1-59921-025-4.  ^ a b "Public Law 90-363". Retrieved April 7, 2014.  ^ Mechant, David (April 28, 2007). " Memorial Day
Memorial Day
History". Retrieved May 28, 2010.  ^ E.g., 112th Congress (2011–2012), S.70 ^ Peggy Post; Anna Post; Lizzie Post; Daniel Post Senning (November 15, 2011). Emily Post's Etiquette, 18. HarperCollins. p. 165. ISBN 978-0-06-210127-3.  ^ Congress (October 22, 2009). United States
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Code, 2006, Supplement 1, January 4, 2007, to January 8, 2008. Government Printing Office. p. 39. ISBN 978-0-16-083512-4.  ^ Kevin J. Carnahan (May 1, 2004). Outdoor Escapes Washington, D.C.: A Four-Season Guide. Globe Pequot. p. 167. ISBN 978-0-7627-3056-8.  ^ Alan Wilson (October 1, 2011). Driven by Desire: The Desire Wilson Story. Veloce Publishing Ltd. p. 92. ISBN 978-1-84584-389-2.  ^ Scott, Ryan (May 24, 2015). "Memorial Day, 3 p.m.: Don't Forget". Forbes. Retrieved June 2, 2015.  ^ "Where did the idea to sell poppies come from?". BBC News. November 10, 2006. Retrieved February 18, 2009.  ^ William H. Swatos; Peter Kivisto (1998). Encyclopedia of Religion and Society. Rowman Altamira. pp. 49–50. ISBN 978-0-7619-8956-1.  ^ Marcela Cristi (2001). From Civil to Political Religion: The Intersection of Culture, Religion and Politics. Wilfrid Laurier U.P. pp. 48–53. ISBN 978-0-88920-368-6.  ^ William M. Epstein (2002). American Policy Making: Welfare As Ritual. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 99. ISBN 978-0-7425-1733-2.  ^ Corwin E. Smidt; Lyman A. Kellstedt; James L. Guth (2009). The Oxford Handbook of Religion and American Politics. Oxford Handbooks Online. pp. 142–43. ISBN 978-0-19-532652-9.  ^ Robert N. Bellah, "Civil Religion in America", Daedalus 1967 96(1): 1–21. ^ Cherry, Conrad (February 1, 2014). God's New Israel. ISBN 978-0-8078-6658-0.  ^ Anania, Michael (1994). "Memorial Day". PoetryFoundation.  ^ Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth. "Memorial Day". The Atlantic. 

Further reading[edit]

Albanese, Catherine. "Requiem for Memorial Day: Dissent in the Redeemer Nation", American Quarterly, Vol. 26, No. 4 (Oct. 1974), pp. 386–98 in JSTOR Bellah, Robert N. "Civil Religion in America". Daedalus 1967 96(1): 1–21. online edition Bellware, Daniel, and Richard Gardiner, The Genesis of the Memorial Day Holiday in America (Columbus State University, 2014). Blight, David W. "Decoration Day: The Origins of Memorial Day
Memorial Day
in North and South" in Alice Fahs and Joan Waugh, eds. The Memory of the Civil War in American Culture (2004), online edition pp. 94–129; the standard scholarly history Blight, David W. Race and Reunion: The Civil War in American Memory (2000) ch. 3, "Decorations" excerpt and text search Buck, Paul H. The Road to Reunion, 1865–1900 (1937) Cherry, Conrad. "Two American Sacred Ceremonies: Their Implications for the Study of Religion in America", American Quarterly, Vol. 21, No. 4 (Winter, 1969), pp. 739–54 in JSTOR Dennis, Matthew. Red, White, and Blue Letter Days: An American Calendar (2002) Jabbour, Alan, and Karen Singer Jabbour. Decoration Day in the Mountains: Traditions of Cemetery Decoration in the Southern Appalachians (University of North Carolina Press; 2010) Myers, Robert J. "Memorial Day". Chapter 24 in Celebrations: The Complete Book of American Holidays. (1972) Robert Haven Schauffler (1911). Memorial Day: Its Celebration, Spirit, and Significance as Related in Prose and Verse, with a Non-sectional Anthology of the Civil W. BiblioBazaar reprint 2010. 

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Memorial Day.

Look up Memorial Day
Memorial Day
in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.

36 USC 116. Memorial Day
Memorial Day
(designation law) United States
United States
Department of Veterans
Affairs National Moment of Remembrance
National Moment of Remembrance
Home Page National Memorial Day
Memorial Day
Museum website National Memorial Day Concert
National Memorial Day Concert
site The History of Memorial Day

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February American Heart Month Black History Month

Washington's Birthday/Presidents' Day (federal) Valentine's Day

Georgia Day (GA) Groundhog Day Lincoln's Birthday
Lincoln's Birthday
(CA, CT, IL, IN, MO, NJ, NY, WV) National Girls and Women in Sports Day National Freedom Day (36) Primary Election Day (WI) Ronald Reagan Day
Ronald Reagan Day
(CA) Rosa Parks Day
Rosa Parks Day
(CA, MO) Susan B. Anthony Day
Susan B. Anthony Day
(CA, FL, NY, WI, WV, proposed federal)


Mardi Gras

Ash Wednesday
Ash Wednesday
(religious) Courir de Mardi Gras
Mardi Gras
(religious) Super Tuesday

March Irish-American Heritage Month National Colon Cancer Awareness Month Women's History Month

St. Patrick's Day (religious) Spring break
Spring break

Casimir Pulaski Day
Casimir Pulaski Day
(IL) Cesar Chavez Day
Cesar Chavez Day
(CA, CO, TX, proposed federal) Evacuation Day (Suffolk County, MA) Harriet Tubman Day
Harriet Tubman Day
(NY) Holi
(NY, religious) Mardi Gras
Mardi Gras
(AL (in two counties), LA) Maryland Day
Maryland Day
(MD) National Poison Prevention Week
National Poison Prevention Week
(week) Prince Jonah Kūhiō Kalanianaʻole Day (HI) Saint Joseph's Day
Saint Joseph's Day
(religious) Seward's Day (AK) Texas Independence Day
Texas Independence Day
(TX) Town
Meeting Day (VT)



Palm Sunday
Palm Sunday
(religious) Passover
(religious) Good Friday
Good Friday
(CT, NC, PR, religious) Easter
Monday (religious)

April Confederate History Month

420 Day April Fools' Day Arbor Day Confederate Memorial Day
Confederate Memorial Day
(AL, MS) Days of Remembrance of the Victims of the Holocaust
Days of Remembrance of the Victims of the Holocaust
(week) Earth Day Emancipation Day
Emancipation Day
(DC) Thomas Jefferson's Birthday
Jefferson's Birthday
(AL) Pascua Florida (FL) Patriots' Day
Patriots' Day
(MA, ME) San Jacinto Day
San Jacinto Day
(TX) Siblings Day Walpurgis Night
Walpurgis Night

May Asian Pacific American Heritage Month Jewish American Heritage Month

Memorial Day
Memorial Day
(federal) Mother's Day (36) Cinco de Mayo

Harvey Milk Day
Harvey Milk Day
(CA) Law Day (36) Loyalty Day (36) Malcolm X Day
Malcolm X Day
(CA, IL, proposed federal) May Day Military Spouse Day National Day of Prayer
National Day of Prayer
(36) National Defense Transportation Day (36) National Maritime Day (36) Peace Officers Memorial Day
Peace Officers Memorial Day
(36) Truman Day
Truman Day

June Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month

Father's Day (36)

Bunker Hill Day
Bunker Hill Day
(Suffolk County, MA) Carolina Day
Carolina Day
(SC) Emancipation Day
Emancipation Day
In Texas / Juneteenth
(TX) Flag Day (36, proposed federal) Helen Keller Day
Helen Keller Day
(PA) Honor America Days (3 weeks) Jefferson Davis Day
Jefferson Davis Day
(AL, FL) Kamehameha Day
Kamehameha Day
(HI) Odunde Festival
Odunde Festival
(Philadelphia, PA) Senior Week (week) West Virginia Day
West Virginia Day


Independence Day (federal)

Lā Hoʻihoʻi Ea (HI, unofficial) Parents' Day
Parents' Day
(36) Pioneer Day (UT)


Summer vacation


American Family Day (AZ) Barack Obama Day
Barack Obama Day
(IL) Bennington Battle Day (VT) Hawaii
Admission Day / Statehood Day (HI) Lyndon Baines Johnson Day
Lyndon Baines Johnson Day
(TX) National Aviation Day
National Aviation Day
(36) Service Reduction Day (MD) Victory over Japan Day (RI, former federal) Women's Equality Day
Women's Equality Day

September Prostate Cancer Awareness Month

Labor Day
Labor Day

California Admission Day
California Admission Day
(CA) Carl Garner Federal Lands Cleanup Day (36) Constitution Day (36) Constitution Week (week) Defenders Day
Defenders Day
(MD) Gold Star Mother's Day
Gold Star Mother's Day
(36) National Grandparents Day
National Grandparents Day
(36) National Payroll Week (week) Native American Day (CA, TN, proposed federal) Patriot Day
Patriot Day

September–October Hispanic Heritage Month


Rosh Hashanah
Rosh Hashanah
(religious) Yom Kippur
Yom Kippur

October Breast Cancer Awareness Month Disability Employment Awareness Month Filipino American History Month LGBT History Month

Columbus Day
Columbus Day
(federal) Halloween

Alaska Day (AK) Child Health Day (36) General Pulaski Memorial Day German-American Day Indigenous Peoples' Day
Indigenous Peoples' Day
(VT) International Day of Non-Violence Leif Erikson Day
Leif Erikson Day
(36) Missouri Day (MO) National School Lunch Week Native American Day (SD) Nevada Day
Nevada Day
(NV) Sweetest Day White Cane Safety Day
White Cane Safety Day



November Native American Indian Heritage Month

Veterans Day
Veterans Day
(federal) Thanksgiving (federal)

Day after Thanksgiving (24) Election Day (CA, DE, HI, KY, MT, NJ, NY, OH, PR, WV, proposed federal) Family Day (NV) Hanukkah
(religious) Lā Kūʻokoʻa (HI, unofficial) Native American Heritage Day (MD, WA) Obama Day
Obama Day
(Perry County, AL)


(religious, federal)

Day (AL) Christmas
Eve (KY, NC, SC) Day after Christmas
(KY, NC, SC, TX) Festivus Hanukkah
(religious, week) Indiana Day
Indiana Day
(IN) Kwanzaa
(religious, week) National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day
Remembrance Day
(36) New Year's Eve Pan American Aviation Day (36) Rosa Parks Day
Rosa Parks Day
(OH, OR) Wright Brothers Day (36)

Varies (year round)

Eid al-Adha
Eid al-Adha
(religious) Eid al-Fitr
Eid al-Fitr
(religious) Ramadan
(religious, month)

Legend: (federal) = federal holidays, (state) = state holidays, (religious) = religious holidays, (week) = weeklong holidays, (month) = monthlong holidays, (36) = Title 36 Observances and Ceremonies Bold indicates major holidays commonly celebrated in the United States, which often represent the major celebrations of the month. See also: Lists of holidays, Hallmark holidays, public holidays in the United States, New Jersey, New York, Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands.

v t e

Official holidays of the New York Stock Exchange

Whole days

New Year's Day Martin Luther King Jr. Day Washington's Birthday Good Friday Memorial Day Independence Day Labor Day Thanksgiving Day Christmas

Partial days

Day before Independence Day Day after Thanksgiving C