Christian Author: Nancy W. Boyer

Tribute to American fallen and Those who serve

 

 Along with the dead of many wars, our soldiers are lovingly placed in the graves of their homeland, the United States of America.   The story of how Memorial Day began may not be  known to everyone.  Below is a short history: 

Ceremony At Columbus , Mississippi Inspired Memorial Day 

America has remembered its war dead since 1776. But the remembrance did not take official form until after the Civil War. 

 ( For our international readers:   The War between the North and South in the USA. The North were the Union troops, the Blue and the South, the Grey, were the Confederates.)    

And the event which most historians credit as the first step toward national observance occurred before the guns were silenced in a Confederate cemetery holding the fallen of both North and South. 

It came suddenly in two furious days of bloodshed at Shiloh Church, just across the border in Tennessee. 

Then it passed on, leaving behind its legacy of death. 

Some of the dead were taken to Columbus, Mississippi  to be buried amid the rolling, magnolia-scented hills on an 18-acre plot once used by the Odd Fellows Lodge as a recreation ground. 

Now it was April 1863. The agony of Shiloh was a year in the past. But it remained fresh in the minds of a small group of Southern women who moved quietly among the graves in the hastily prepared cemetery. 

Ladies of the South

Led by Miss Matt Morton, they scattered spring flowers on the graves of the Southern soldiers who had died in their defense. 

Then someone found two Union graves. The women placed flowers on them, too, and quietly they went away. 

The simple act by the women of Columbus, transcending wartime bitterness, grew until it became a ceremony honoring all the American dead of all wars. 

It was first called Decoration Day, but later became known as  Memorial Day. 

This weekend many will gather to hear a tribute to our soldiers who died in all wars.  There will be music, speeches, prayers and salutes to give them the honor they deserve.  Without them, we would not be the free and united country that we are today.  Thank you to all the military, their families, and those who gave the ultimate sacrifice…their lives. 

See the video tribute shown previously, but worth viewing again.

 
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