Military Holidays and Observances


Military holidays and Observances historically have included Armed Forces Day, Army Day, Declaration of Peace, Flag Day, Memorial Day, and Veterans Day.


Armed Forces Day

The most powerful peacetime force in U. S. history—its men, ships, planes, and missiles strategically located around the world in combat readiness against any emergency—will spearhead our observance of the Armed Forces Day during the period 10 to 18 May.


Army Day

Army Day. A day set aside to render suitable honor to the Army of the United States in all its component parts —the Reserve, the National Guard, and the Regular Army—and to its veterans who are now civilians.


Declaration of Peace - 1915

Words can not reveal the terrible meaning of war. Pictures and personal descriptions may arouse the imagination to a faint realization of it, but only those who have really experienced it mow the awful definition of the word.


Flag Day

Let Flag Day be a day on which those who have come to us from other lands, and have here found freedom and opportunity, shall re-affirm their loyalty to the United States and her institutions


Flag Mottos

Our flag is a home production. It is indigenous to American soil. It is no foreign import or shoddy imitation. Its babyhood bore some resemblance to its English cousin’s; but that was because it was a baby.


How Memorial Day Began

A society had been formed by many of the soldiers who had fought for the Union during this war. This society was called the Grand Army of the Republic.


Chicago Observing Memorial Day with a Parade circa 1921.

Memorial Day

Since 1868, this nation has set aside one day each year to commemorate its soldier dead. The idea of thus honoring our soldiers was conceived by a soldier of the Civil War, Adjutant General N. P. Chipman.



23 Patriotic Quotations

The highest expression of patriotism is seen in all those grand movements that advance the interest of a people in intellectual power and clearer moral vision. Patriotism requires that every effort in our power be made for the good of our country.



The "Old Glory" Story

To veterans throughout American history, the Stars and Stripes has served as a symbol of their service, and as a continuing testimony that the service was worthwhile.


Final Resting Place of America's Unkown Soldier in Washington, DC.

The Story of the Unknown Soldier

A plain soldier, unknown but weighted with honors as perhaps no American before him because he died for the flag in France, lay in a place where only martyred Presidents Lincoln, Garfield, and McKinley have slept in death.



Veterans Day—How It Was Named

In 1921, an American soldier—his name “known but to God”—was buried on a Virginia hillside overlooking the Potomac River and the city of Washington. The Arlington National Cemetery burial site of this unknown World War I soldier became the personification of dignity and reverence for America’s veterans.


Crowds waiting for the parade of the famous 369th [African American] Infantry, formerly 15th New York regulars, New York City. National Archives & Records Administration ARC ID # 533517.

Veterans’ Day / Armistice Day

Veterans’ Day. Also known as "Armistice Day.” It is the anniversary of the armistice with Germany on 11 November 1918. It was recognized by President Wilson in a proclamation of 11 November 1919


Return to Top of Page