History of Veterans Day
Posted date: Nov 11, 2017
Back to important historic dates, there is one more that can’t be left without our respectful attention. November 11th, which is the day when fighting between the Allied nations and Germany ceased thanks to the armistice agreement in 1918, is nowadays known as Veterans Day and is considered to be the US public holiday.
Although November 11th wasn’t the official date of the end of World War I, events of exactly that day preceded the official assignment of the Treaty of Versailles on June 28, in1919, in the Palace of Versailles, France, which finally meant peace.
Since 1919, the year of the first commemoration of Armistice Day declared by President Wilson on November 11, the holiday starts its thorny path of the establishment.
In fact, the end of World War I was declared by the US Congress only in seven years after its official termination, in 1926, the same year when Congress called for Armistice Day to become a legal holiday. In 1938, a Congressional Act made November 11th a permanent official holiday primarily dedicated to honoring veterans of World War I. However, because of such historic events as World War II, the Korean and Vietnam wars, Congress amended the Act on June 1, 1954, according to which the word “Armistice” was replaces with “Veterans” and since then has been known as Veterans Day honoring American veterans of all wars.
How 11th November have became Day of Celebration
New changes concerning the celebrations of Veterans Day took place in 1968 when Congress intended to establish three-day weekends for all federal employees by commemorating four national holidays among which was Veterans Day too. According to the Uniform Holiday Bill assigned on June 28, in 1968, Veterans Day was firstly observed under the new law on October 25, 1971. Though, such alterations weren’t supported by states, which continued to stick to the celebrations of Veterans Day on the day historically connected with the holiday, notably, November 11th. For this reason, on September 20th, 1975, President Gerald R. Ford signed Public Law, which in 1978 again made November 11th the official original date of the annual observance of Veterans Day. Moreover, it is continued to be celebrated on November 11th regardless the day of the week on which it falls preserving the historical importance of the date and honoring all those dead and alive, who served in the military and made a huge contribution to the nation’s security.
It is also crucial to understand the difference between Memorial Day and Veterans Day as each of them bears its unique purpose. While Memorial Day is largely dedicated to commemorating those who gave life in the service of their country, Veterans Day is aimed at honoring and thanking veterans, who are still alive.