Veterans’ Day: How It Started

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Veterans’ Day: How It Started

Courtesy of Visa Lighting

Courtesy of Visa Lighting

Courtesy of Visa Lighting

Courtesy of Visa Lighting

David H, Writer

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          Veterans Day, a holiday celebrated on Saturday, November 11, is an official United States public holiday that commemorates American military veterans of all wars.

          The holiday first originated in 1919, after the end of World War 1. Former U.S. President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed November 11, 1919 as Armistice day, after an armistice, or truce, went into effect on the exact same date a year before. Wilson wanted the U.S. to celebrate the holiday since the U.S. won the war.

However, it would not become a legal holiday until 1938. At first, it mostly honored the veterans of World War 1, but as the U.S. got involved in World War 2 in 1941 and the Korean War in 1950, veteran groups asked Congress to honor all soldiers. Therefore, in 1954, Congress changed the 1938 law, replacing “Armistice” with “Veterans.”

         Many people confuse Memorial Day with Veterans Day. Memorial Day, which is celebrated on May 28, commemorates and honors the soldiers who died for the U.S. Veterans Day, on the other hand, just honors all veterans who served in the military in wartime or peacetime. It mainly intends to show appreciation for the ones serving our country.

          Interestingly, other countries besides the U.S. honor their veterans annually on November 11th. However, there are minute differences. For example, Canada and Australia celebrate “Remembrance Day” on the same day, and Great Britain celebrates “Remembrance Day” on the Sunday nearest to November 11th.

          In short, Veterans Day is a day to honor the ones who have served or are serving our country. It is the day we thank the ones who put their own lives on the line to protect our nation.

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