Have some fun this Memorial Day, and amaze family and friends with your wealth of trivia regarding the holiday. Here are 10 facts to get you started. Check out the link for more information.
1. General John Alexander Logan chose May 30 as Decoration Day, because flowers, which by then should be blooming throughout the country, could be used to place on the graves.
2. Memorial Day, then known as Decoration Day, was first celebrated on May 30, 1868.
3. The South refused to acknowledge Memorial Day until after WW I. That’s when the meaning of remembering the Civil War dead changed to honoring all Americans who died in any war.
4. Waterloo, New York, was declared the “birthplace of Memorial Day” by Congress. New York was the first state to designate Memorial Day as a legal holiday in 1873.
5. Mississippi was the first southern state to celebrate Memorial Day. It was held in Columbus, on April 25, 1866.
6. President Ulysses S. Grant had the honor of being the first president to attend a Memorial Day ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery. (Until 1864, Arlington was General Robert E. Lee’s plantation)
7. In 1915, Moina Michael, inspired by the poem “In Flander’s Field,” wore a red poppy in memory of all those who lost their lives in battle. She later began selling them with all proceeds going to benefit servicemen in need.
8. In 1924, an artificial poppy factory was built in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. All of the employees were veterans in need of jobs.
9. Memorial Day was declared a national holiday in 1971.
10. One of the most publicized and exciting Memorial Day traditions is the Indianapolis 500 race. The first race was in 1911, and won by Ray Harroun.
Memorial Day Trivia & Facts From PurpleTrail