Memorial Day - Meaning and History

This is a discussion on Memorial Day - Meaning and History within the Law Enforcement, Military & Homeland Security Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; General John A. Logan's Memorial Day Order General Order No. 11 Headquarters, Grand Army of the Republic Washington, D.C., May 5, 1868 I. The 30th ...

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Thread: Memorial Day - Meaning and History

  1. #1
    VIP Member Array SIGguy229's Avatar
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    Memorial Day - Meaning and History

    General John A. Logan's
    Memorial Day Order
    General Order No. 11


    Headquarters, Grand Army of the Republic
    Washington, D.C., May 5, 1868

    I. The 30th day of May, 1868, is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village, and hamlet churchyard in the land. In this observance no form or ceremony is prescribed, but posts and comrades will in their own way arrange such fitting services and testimonials of respect as circumstances may permit.

    We are organized, comrades, as our regulations tell us, for the purpose, among other things, "of preserving and strengthening those kind and fraternal feelings which have bound together the soldiers, sailors, and marines who united to suppress the late rebellion." What can aid more to assure this result than by cherishing tenderly the memory of our heroic dead, who made their breasts a barricade between our country and its foe? Their soldier lives were the reveille of freedom to a race in chains, and their death a tattoo of rebellious tyranny in arms. We should guard their graves with sacred vigilance.

    All that the consecrated wealth and taste of the Nation can add to their adornment and security is but a fitting tribute to the memory of her slain defenders. Let no wanton foot tread rudely on such hallowed grounds. Let pleasant paths invite the coming and going of reverent visitors and found mourners. Let no vandalism of avarice or neglect, no ravages of time, testify to the present or to the coming generations that we have forgotten, as a people, the cost of free and undivided republic.

    If other eyes grow dull and other hands slack, and other hearts cold in the solemn trust, ours shall keep it well as long as the light and warmth of life remain in us.

    Let us, then, at the time appointed, gather around their sacred remains and garland the passionless mounds above them with choicest flowers of springtime; let us raise above them the dear old flag they saved from dishonor; let us in this solemn presence renew our pledges to aid and assist those whom they have left among us as sacred charges upon the Nation's gratitude,--the soldier's and sailor's widow and orphan.

    II. It is the purpose of the Commander-in-Chief to inaugurate this observance with the hope it will be kept up from year to year, while a survivor of the war remains to honor the memory of his departed comrades. He earnestly desires the public press to call attention to this Order, and lend its friendly aid in bringing it to the notice of comrades in all parts of the country in time for simultaneous compliance therewith.

    III. Department commanders will use every effort to make this order effective.

    By command of:

    JOHN A. LOGAN,
    Commander-in-Chief.

    N. P. CHIPMAN,
    Adjutant-General.
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    martyr is a fancy name for crappy fighter
    You have never lived until you have almost died. For those that have fought for it, life has a special flavor the protected will never know

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    VIP Member Array SIGguy229's Avatar
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    Before everyone starts making plans for the three-day weekend, I ask you to read...and remember why this holiday is special. Everyone who died serving our country signed their name on the dotted line...and wrote a blank check to the United States of America. Please--think of those who died serving us...If you want some names to remember, here are a few:

    Capt Denny Gingerich, USMC - Killed in June 2003 upon return from Iraq

    1Lt Roslyn L. Schulte, USAF - Killed 20 May 2009 by an IED just north of Kabul, Afghanistan (http://www.airforcetimes.com/news/20...sualty_052109/)

    8 Airmen killed by an Afghan pilot (http://www.airforce-magazine.com/DRA...dentified.aspx)
    Lt. Col. Frank D. Bryant Jr., 37, of Knoxville, Tenn. He was assigned to the 56th Operations Group at Luke AFB, Ariz.
    Maj. Philip D. Ambard, 44, of Edmonds, Wash. He was with an assistant professor of foreign languages at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, CO
    Maj. Jeffrey O. Ausborn, 41, of Gadsden, Ala. He was a C-27 instructor pilot assigned to the 99th Flying Training Squadron at Randolph AFB, TX
    Maj. David L. Brodeur, 34, of Auburn, Mass. He was an 11th Air Force executive officer at JB Elmendorf-Richardson, AK
    Maj. Raymond G. Estelle II, 40, of New Haven, Conn. He was assigned to Headquarters Air Combat Command at Langley-Eustis
    Capt. Nathan J. Nylander, 35, of Hockley, Tex. He was assigned to the 25th Operational Weather Squadron at Davis-Monthan AFB, Ariz
    Capt. Charles A. Ransom, 31, of Midlothian, Va. He was a cyberspace airman with the 83rd Network Operations Squadron at Langley-Eustis, VA
    MSgt. Tara R. Brown, 33, of Deltona, Fla. She was assigned to the Air Force Office of Special Investigations at JB Andrews, Md

    Maj James Weis, USMC - AH-1 pilot, shot down - KIA, Afghanistan, 2010



    Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, is a day of remembrance for those who have died in our nation's service. There are many stories as to its actual beginnings, with over two dozen cities and towns laying claim to being the birthplace of Memorial Day. There is also evidence that organized women's groups in the South were decorating graves before the end of the Civil War: a hymn published in 1867, "Kneel Where Our Loves are Sleeping" by Nella L. Sweet carried the dedication "To The Ladies of the South who are Decorating the Graves of the Confederate Dead" (Source: Duke University's Historic American Sheet Music, 1850-1920).

    While Waterloo N.Y. was officially declared the birthplace of Memorial Day by President Lyndon Johnson in May 1966, it's difficult to prove conclusively the origins of the day. It is more likely that it had many separate beginnings; each of those towns and every planned or spontaneous gathering of people to honor the war dead in the 1860's tapped into the general human need to honor our dead, each contributed honorably to the growing movement that culminated in Gen Logan giving his official proclamation in 1868.

    It is not important who was the very first, what is important is that Memorial Day was established. Memorial Day is not about division. It is about reconciliation; it is about coming together to honor those who gave their all.

    Memorial Day was officially proclaimed on 5 May 1868 by General John Logan, national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, in his General Order No. 11, and was first observed on 30 May 1868, when flowers were placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery.

    The first state to officially recognize the holiday was New York in 1873. By 1890 it was recognized by all of the northern states. The South refused to acknowledge the day, honoring their dead on separate days until after World War I (when the holiday changed from honoring just those who died fighting in the Civil War to honoring Americans who died fighting in any war).

    It is now celebrated in almost every State on the last Monday in May (passed by Congress with the National Holiday Act of 1971 (P.L. 90 - 363) to ensure a three day weekend for Federal holidays), though several southern states have an additional separate day for honoring the Confederate war dead: January 19 in Texas, April 26 in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and Mississippi; May 10 in South Carolina; and June 3 (Jefferson Davis' birthday) in Louisiana and Tennessee.

    In 1915, inspired by the poem "In Flanders Fields," Moina Michael replied with her own poem:

    We cherish too, the Poppy red
    That grows on fields where valor led,
    It seems to signal to the skies
    That blood of heroes never dies.

    She then conceived of an idea to wear red poppies on Memorial day in honor of those who died serving the nation during war. She was the first to wear one, and sold poppies to her friends and co-workers with the money going to benefit servicemen in need. Later a Madam Guerin from France was visiting the United States and learned of this new custom started by Ms.Michael and when she returned to France, made artificial red poppies to raise money for war orphaned children and widowed women. This tradition spread to other countries.

    In 1921, the Franco-American Children's League sold poppies nationally to benefit war orphans of France and Belgium. The League disbanded a year later and Madam Guerin approached the VFW for help. Shortly before Memorial Day in 1922 the VFW became the first veterans' organization to nationally sell poppies. Two years later their "Buddy" Poppy program was selling artificial poppies made by disabled veterans. In 1948 the US Post Office honored Ms Michael for her role in founding the National Poppy movement by issuing a red 3 cent postage stamp with her likeness on it.

    Traditional observance of Memorial day has diminished over the years. Many Americans nowadays have forgotten the meaning and traditions of Memorial Day. At many cemeteries, the graves of the fallen are increasingly ignored, neglected. Most people no longer remember the proper flag etiquette for the day.

    While there are towns and cities that still hold Memorial Day parades, many have not held a parade in decades. Some people think the day is for honoring any and all dead, and not just those fallen in service to our country.

    There are a few notable exceptions. Since the late 50's on the Thursday before Memorial Day, the 1,200 soldiers of the 3d U.S. Infantry place small American flags at each of the more than 260,000 gravestones at Arlington National Cemetery. They then patrol 24 hours a day during the weekend to ensure that each flag remains standing.

    In 1951, the Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts of St. Louis began placing flags on the 150,000 graves at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery as an annual Good Turn, a practice that continues to this day.

    More recently, beginning in 1998, on the Saturday before the observed day for Memorial Day, the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts place a candle at each of approximately 15,300 grave sites of soldiers buried at Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park on Marye's Heights (the Luminaria Program). And in 2004, Washington D.C. held its first Memorial Day parade in over 60 years.
    Magazine <> clip - know the difference

    martyr is a fancy name for crappy fighter
    You have never lived until you have almost died. For those that have fought for it, life has a special flavor the protected will never know

  4. #3
    Senior Member Array XD40SCiinNC's Avatar
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    "The most foolish mistake we could possibly make would be to allow the subject races to possess arms. History shows that all conquerors who have allowed their subject races to carry arms have prepared their own downfall by so doing." - Adolf Hitler

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    We lost two of our pilots from Seymour Johnson in Afghanistan a few years back.

    Military IDs N.C.-based airmen killed in Afghan crash :: WRAL.com

    I will be remembering my father also, he made it through the war but he still had shrapnel in his feet and legs when he passed away thirty years later.

    P1010116.jpg

    And just from my generation there are thousands to be remembered.

    IMG_0700.JPG IMG_0698.JPG IMG_0695.JPG IMG_0694.JPG
    When you have to shoot, shoot. Don't talk.
    "Don't forget, incoming fire has the right of way."

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    1st Lt. Travis Manion
    Sgt Nicholas Walsh
    Sgt Jonathan Simpson
    Capt Brent Morel
    Sgt Ryan Pape
    Sgt Douglas Bascom
    SSgt Jeremy Whitehouse
    GySgt Ryan Jeschke


    “And they who for their country die shall fill an honored grave, for glory lights the soldier’s tomb, and beauty weeps the brave.” – Joseph Rodman Drake

    Rest in peace, my brothers, and know that your deeds on the field of battle shall never be forgotten.
    For the strength of the Pack is the Wolf,
    and the strength of the Wolf is the Pack.
    -Rudyard Kipling

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    Distinguished Member Array BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    And for those that died to keep us free:

    Vietnam Veteran - 1966-1970 USASA
    Carry Pistol. CZ 75 P-07 Duty 9mm.
    Carry Pistol. Glock 19.
    Give me a minute before I post again.

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    Here is one that was posted awhile back, a very fitting memorial.

    When you have to shoot, shoot. Don't talk.
    "Don't forget, incoming fire has the right of way."

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    21 years and 21 days, United States Marine Corps & NRA Life Member since 1972

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    Cpl. William S. Hartman, 504th Regiment Parachute Infantry, 82nd Airborne Division.

    Billie Hartman enlisted in the Maryland Army National Guard, later transferred to the regular army, and was accepted into airborne infantry training. Cpl. Hartman died of wounds, having sustained a gunshot wound to the head at a bridge crossing in Nijmegen, Holland. He died on September 23rd, 1944.

    His mother, my great grandmother, ordered and had placed a bronze memorial marker on his gravesite. I am honored to be named after a great man who gave all so that I have the freedom available in the greatest country on earth. Gone, but never forgotten.

    image.jpg
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    I find supremely ironic that God in his wisdom and grace has given man freedom of choice bounded by 10 simple rules. Man in his finite wisdom has created millions of rules to limit freedom of choice and the personal responsibility of his fellow man.

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    Thank You so very much to all that served so that we may keep our freedoms.
    "Everybody gets knocked down in life. How you choose to get back up is up to you!"
    *NRA* *BFA*
    *GOA* *SAF*
    *NAGR*

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    Distinguished Member Array svgheartland's Avatar
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    Yes. My thanks to all. I remember all too clearly the guys who sent back a star to go on the front door of Mom and Dad's house. Sometimes more than one on the same door. I've never seen something so proudly displayed and so sad at the same time. There is also a sacrifice for those that remain. God bless all, on both sides of that final line.
    Savage Heartland

    What if the Hokey Pokey IS what it's all about?

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    Captain Linden C R Mason

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5 may 1868 by general john logan, national commander of the grand army of the republic, in his general order no. 11.

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