While the debate on when and where the first Decoration Day/Memorial Day was held in America still rages, one fact remains–the day set aside to honor and remember those fallen in battle, those who bravely fought for our freedom, was originally the concept of women.
The custom of decorating the graves of soldiers harkens back to the Ancient Greeks. This Attic Vase Painting, from the Classic Period dating back to 440 B.C., depicts two women approaching a grave stele or monument that has been draped with two wreaths.
The tradition of putting wreaths and flowers on soldiers graves became rooted in America, unfortunately, as the result of war on our own land. The Civil War erupted in 1861. On June 3rd of that year, in Warrenton, Virginia, the first grave of a fallen Civil War soldier was decorated to honor and remember the loss due to combat. [Read more…] about Memorial Day