November 11, 2013
History of Veterans Day
I never served in the military. There are many villagers like me who never wore a uniform nor faced the unknown terror of war fought on foreign soil. As such, I thought it would be helpful to share this brief history of Veterans Day.
Veterans Day, originally known as Armistice Day, originated after World War I. The fighting between the Allies and Germany ended on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918. To honor that, President Wilson issued a proclamation in 1919 that the armistice would be commemorated November 11.
By 1926, 27 states had made Armistice Day a holiday. In 1938, Congress passed a bill making it a national holiday. After World War II and the Korean War, the name was changed to Veterans Day to honor all U.S. veterans in 1954. In 1968, legislation changed the national commemoration of Veterans Day to the fourth Monday in October. It soon became apparent, however, that November 11 was a date of historic significance to many Americans and President Gerald Ford officially returned the observance to its traditional date effective in 1978.
When Nov. 11 falls on a Sunday, the holiday is observed the next day.
Regardless of your thoughts on the current wars in Afghanistan and Iraq ... today is a day that we can honor all of our brothers and sisters in the military.
Today, my thoughts go out to the families of Rear Admiral Benjamin Hacker and Captain Charles Hicks. These two naval officers, now deceased, are part of my family tree ... and I am very proud of both of them.
Villagers, share your village voice about anyone that you know in the military. Let's beat our drums in a positive manner about them today.