As recorded by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, on this date in 1918 at approximately 11:00 a.m., World War I fighting ceased as sparring nations ended hostilities toward one another. Our 28th President, Woodrow Wilson, proclaimed November 11, 1919 as Armistice Day. Armistice indicates the beginning of peace and was later changed to ‘veterans”. This is ultimately why we observe Veterans Day each year on November 11th.
Initially, Veterans Day celebration began with the closing of businesses at the anniversary hour of 11:00 a.m. Events consisted of public gatherings, celebrations, and parades in order to give thanks to the veterans who served and honor the many which were lost during World War I. Today, many businesses and schools close for the entire day as communities celebrate with ceremonies, prayers, and meals to honor all who served, with special reverence for those who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. Veterans Day is also a time to display the American flag in honor and support of the country’s patriotism, and the determination and sacrifices made by veterans across the United States.
In addition to Veterans Day commemorations across the country, each year the United States holds a National Veterans Day Ceremony at the Arlington National Cemetery, beginning at 11:00 a.m. Communities all across the nation will celebrate Veterans Day with parades, military exhibits, wreath laying ceremonies, cookouts, chicken stews; some complete with bands and other entertainment.
To learn more about Veterans Day or participate in the Veterans History Project, contact the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
Sources: U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Wikipedia