The countdown to Veterans Day — 1 of 6
Veterans Day, celebrated each year on November 11, is one of those holidays that receives very little preemptive consideration in comparison to other nationally observed holidays. LIBERTY FLAGS is dedicating the time between now and Veterans Day to sharing the history and importance of honoring our veterans.
Let's start at the very beginning
Veterans Day is a federal United States holiday, also known as Remembrance Day and Armistice Day, that is celebrated every November 11. Veterans Day marks the anniversary of the commonly accepted end of World War I, and honors the men and women who have served in the United States Armed Forces. However, Veterans Day was first known as Armistice Day, and rather than honoring the service of all veterans, the day was set aside in honor of the veterans of World War I.
All's quiet on the Western Front
On the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month of 1918, an armistice to end the fighting on the Western Front was signed in a railway car near Compiègne, France. The Allies and Germany had finally agreed to bring an end to the war. One year later, the first anniversary of the Armistice Day brought about a presidential proclamation.
Pictured: a painting of the signing of the agreement at the Palace of Versailles, by William Orpen.
Remember the Armistice, embrace the peace
On November 11, 1919, on the heels of the Treaty of Versailles, President Woodrow Wilson made the proclamation that Armistice Day should be remembered with a moment of silence at 11:00 a.m. each November 11. Earlier in 1919, Woodrow Wilson summarized the Treaty of Versailles before Congress. In that summation, he spoke these words of America's soldiers,
"They were recognized as crusaders, and as their thousands swelled to millions their strength was seen to mean salvation. And they were fit men to carry such a hope and make good the assurance it forecast. Finer men never went into battle; and their officers were worthy of them… They were the sort of men America would wish to be represented by, the sort of men every American would wish to claim as fellow countrymen and comrades in a great cause. They were terrible in battle, and gentle and helpful out of it, remembering the mothers and the sisters, the wives and the little children at home. They were free men under arms, not forgetting their ideals of duty in the midst of tasks of violence. I am proud to have had the privilege of being associated with them and of calling myself their leader."
It was not until later that Armistice Day evolved into the legal holiday that we now know of as Veterans Day.
Know a veteran?
Show your support with the gift of one of these military flags!
For a quick study, enjoy this short video, courtesy of the History Channel.
Send us your pictures of Veterans Day observations, American flags, flagpoles, ropes, or other accessories! We would be honored to feature your photography in our blog or on Facebook. Remember, photos of damaged flags and accessories are valuable, too.
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Have a great day, from your friends at LIBERTY FLAGS, The American Wave®.
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