HAPPY MEMORIAL DAY


Following President Abraham Lincoln’s assassination in April 1865, there were a variety of events of commemoration. The first well-known Memorial Day-type observance after the Civil War was in Charleston, South Carolina on May 1, 1865. During the war, Union soldiers who were prisoners of war had been held at the Charleston Race Course; at least 257 Union prisoners died there and were hastily buried in unmarked graves. Together with teachers and missionaries, blacks in Charleston organized a May Day ceremony in 1865, which was covered by the New York Tribune and other national newspapers. The freedmen had cleaned up and landscaped the burial ground, building an enclosure and an arch labeled, “Martyrs of the Race Course.” Nearly ten thousand people, mostly freedmen, gathered on May 1 to commemorate the dead. Involved were 3,000 school children newly enrolled in freedmen’s schools, mutual aid societies, Union troops, and black ministers and white northern missionaries. – Wikipedia

It’s pretty humbling when you really think about how tough decisions and brave actions of sailors and soldiers throught history make it possible for us to live in a place called the United States of America. Speaking to his troops before battle during the American Revolution George Washington stated;

‘The time is now near at hand, which must probably determine whether Americans are to be freemen or slaves; whether they are to have any property they can call their own; whether their homes and farms are to be pillaged and destroyed. The fate of unborn millions will now depend, under God, on the conduct and courage of this army . . . . We have therefore to resolve to conquer or die…”

From the American Revolution until now, our military personnel have sacrificed their time with family and their lives to defend our flag. So at some point today take a moment and reflect on what others have given up so we may enjoy good food, good company and freedom on this day.

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