The Origin of Veteran’s DayJust one day after the Marine Corp birthday, every year on November 11th the United States celebrate Veteran’s Day. A day that commemorates all the brave men and women to serve our country in the Armed Forces. But how did this important holiday come to be? How did it change over the years? Here is a brief history of Veteran’s Day

How It Started

Veteran’s Day started in 1919 when President Wilson proclaimed November 11 as Armistice Day. Wilson stated, “To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations…” The original idea of the day was celebrated with a large parade. 

Armistice Day Changed to Veteran’s Day

In 1938, an act was passed declaring every year on November 11 a national legal holiday. A day to be dedicated to world peace and known as “Armistice Day.” This holiday was primarily a day to celebrate the veterans of World War I. In 1954, after World War II the name “Armistice” was stripped from the holiday and replaced with “Veteran’s.” This way all American veterans are honored on this holiday for all wars. 

Later that year, President Dwight D. Eisenhower issued the first “Veteran’s Day Proclamation” stating, “In order to ensure proper and widespread observance of this anniversary, all Veterans, all Veterans’ organizations, and the entire citizenry will wish to join hands in the common purpose. Toward this end, I am designating the Administrator of Veterans Affairs as Chairman of a Veterans Day National Committee, which shall include such other persons as the Chairman may select, and which will coordinate at the national level necessary planning for the observance. I am also requesting the heads of all departments and agencies of the Executive branch of the Government to assist the National Committee in every way possible.”

Importance of Veteran’s Day

Veteran’s Day is a time we pay our respects to those who proudly serve our country. Although, every day we should, on this holiday Americans across the nation stand in unity to show their gratitude and respect for our veterans. We celebrate and honor American Veterans for their patriotism and willingness to serve and sacrifice for our beautiful nation. 

So, during this holiday weekend, if you see a veteran make sure to thank them for their service. They are our heroes. 

Do you know a Veteran you could thank this holiday?