Antique Blue and Ecru Ribbon

Annie's "Memorial Day Symbols & Things" Page
~Celebrated the last Monday in the month of May~
~Monday May 30th, 2011~

American Heart Wreath
"To live in the hearts of those you leave behind is never to die"
~Robert Orr~

Antique Blue and Ecru Ribbon

Memorial Day Flag Etiquette

Flags are used to decorate the graves on Memorial Day.
When flying the flag, it should be flown at half-staff until noon.
More information can be found at:
US Flag Code (36 US Code 10)


Why do we get Poppies when we give a donation on Veteran's Day?
Flanders Field is a United States military cemetery near Waregem, Belgium. Buried in this cemetery
are the bodies of 368 members of the armed forces who died in World War I (1914-1918).
Canadian poet John McCrae wrote the famous poem, "In Flanders Fields"

McCrae, pronounced muh KRAY, John (1872-1918), was a Canadian physician, soldier, and poet. He
contributed verses to Canadian periodicals before World War I. But he did not become famous until
1915 when he published "In Flanders Fields" in Punch, an English magazine. His poems were published
after his death under the title In Flanders Fields, and Other Poems (1919).
~Above Information from The World Book Encyclopedia~

In Flanders Fields
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.
~Written by John McCrae~

Poppy is the common name for several related groups of flowers. Since the end of World War I,
Memorial Day has also been Poppy Day. Volunteers sell small, red artificial poppies in order to help
disabled veterans. In recent years, the custom has grown in most families to decorate
the graves of loved ones on Memorial Day.

It has been raised in the Orient since ancient times. The flowers of poppies are admired for their
delicate beauty and gracefulness. Most kinds are hardy and easy to cultivate. The tiny seeds are
sold for bird food. They also yield an oil used in preparing some foods. Poppy seeds are also used
as flavoring. Poppy seeds may be sprinkled on bread and rolls, or used in filling for cakes.
The common corn poppy grows wild in the grainfields and grassy meadows of Europe. The most showy
poppy is the large-flowered Oriental poppy. This poppy's red, orange, white, or salmon blossoms often
have blackish-purple centers. Many poppies are annual plants that can be grown from seed.
The poppy is one of the flowers of the month of August.


Pledge of Allegiance
is a solemn promise of loyalty to the United States.

It reads: I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the Republic
for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

World Book tells us that the Public-school children first recited the pledge as they saluted the
flag during the National School Celebration held in 1892 to mark the 400th anniversary of the
discovery of America. The original pledge was probably written by Francis Bellamy (1855-1931),
though some scholars believe James B. Upham (1845-1905) wrote the pledge. Both men were
from Boston and worked for The Youth's Companion. The National Flag Conferences of the
American Legion expanded the original wording in 1923 and 1924. In 1942, Congress made the
pledge part of its code for the use of the flag. In 1954, it added the words "under God."
VISIT: Annie's "Pledge of Allegiance" Page


Civil War (1861-1865) took more American lives than any other war in history. It so divided
the people of the United States that in some families brother fought against brother. The
Civil War was between the Southern States, trying to preserve slavery and an agricultural way
of life, and the Northern States, dedicated to a more modern way of life and to ending
slavery. The terrible bloodshed left a heritage of grief and bitterness that declined
only slowly and, even today, has not fully disappeared.


Logan, John Alexander (1826-1886), gained fame as a Union general and political leader. After the
Civil War, he helped organize the Grand Army of the Republic, a veterans' organization. Logan
is also credited with naming May 30, 1868, as the first Memorial Day.

In 1862, Logan became brigadier general of volunteers and fought in all the Western campaigns under
General Ulysses S. Grant. He later distinguished himself at the siege of Vicksburg, Miss., and
served with General William T. Sherman on the march through Georgia. Logan became a major
general of volunteers and a corps commander. His soldiers called him Black Jack because
of his dark complexion, eyes, and hair.

Logan represented Illinois in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1859 until 1861, when he
resigned to recruit an Illinois regiment and become its colonel. He returned to the House in 1867.
He was a U.S. senator from Illinois from 1871 to 1877 and from 1879 until his death. He
ran unsuccessfully for Vice President on the Republican ticket with James G. Blaine in 1884.

Logan was born in Jackson County, Ill. He studied law at the University of Louisville
and was admitted to the bar. He was a volunteer in the Mexican War, then
served in the 1853 and 1857 sessions of the Illinois legislature.
~Above article is from The World Book Encyclopedia~


American Heart Wreath
is customarily played at funerals at Arlington national Cemetery as well as at ceremonies
at the Tomb of the Unknowns there.


From World Book: Arlington National Cemetery is one of the largest and most famous national
cemeteries in the United States. It covers about 612 acres (248 hectares) in Arlington, Va., across
the Potomac River from Washington, D.C. The cemetery surrounds Arlington House, The Robert E. Lee
Memorial, which was the home of General Robert E. Lee of the Confederate Army. It occupies land
that was once a part of the estate of Lee's wife, Mary Custis Lee. The United States government
made Arlington a national cemetery in 1864. The Department of the Army administers it.

Space in the cemetery is available for honorably discharged winners of the Air Force Cross,
Distinguished Service Cross, Distinguished Service Medal, Medal of Honor, Navy Cross, Purple Heart,
or Silver Star; members of the armed services who die on active duty; certain disabled veterans;
members of the armed forces who have served long enough to be officially retired; and honorably
discharged veterans who have held a federal elective office or a Cabinet-level position, or who
have served on the Supreme Court. Their wives or husbands and their minor children are also
eligible. Until 1967, all honorably discharged veterans could be buried in the cemetery.

The Tomb of the Unknowns of World Wars I and II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War is
located in Arlington. Wreaths are placed at this tomb on national holidays and during visits of
dignitaries. The grave of President John F. Kennedy, marked by an eternal flame, lies on a hillside
near Arlington House, The Robert E. Lee Memorial. Kennedy and William Howard Taft
are the only Presidents buried in Arlington.

The tomb is now EMPTY!!!!!!!!
"For 14 years, he lay buried in the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery.
The remains of this unknown soldier were identified through DNA testing,
a technology unavailable at the time of his burial, and .........."
5/24/01 -
the unknown soldier comes home -- Read about how DNA has identified the unknown
solder as Michael Joseph Blassie!
Check The History Channel's link about
Memorial Day

Prior to the DNA discovery of the last Unknown.......
From World Book:
Unknown soldier. After World War I (1914-1918), officials of the Allied countries
found that the bodies of many soldiers killed in battle could not be identified. The governments of
Belgium, Britain, France, Italy, and the United States decided to honor the memory of these soldiers.
Each government chose a symbolic unknown soldier, buried the remains near the national capital, and
built a monument in honor of the soldier. Belgium placed its unknown soldier in a tomb at the base of
the Colonnade of the Congress in Brussels. Britain buried its unknown soldier in Westminster Abbey.
France buried its unknown soldier beneath the Arc de Triomphe in the center of Paris, and keeps
a flame always burning over the grave. Italy's unknown soldier lies in front of the monument to
Victor Emmanuel II, the first king of a united Italy, in Rome.

The unknown soldier of the United States was one of four war dead taken from American cemeteries
in France. An American soldier, Sergeant Edward Younger, selected the soldier from these four.
The remains were brought to the U.S. Capitol to lie in state. On Armistice Day (Nov. 11), 1921,
they were buried in Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia, across the Potomac River from
Washington, D.C. The tomb, completed in 1931, has a white marble sarcophagus over the grave
bearing the inscription, "Here rests in honored glory an American soldier known but to God."

Congress later directed that an "Unknown American" from each of three wars--World War II
(1939-1945), the Korean War (1950-1953), and the Vietnam War (1957-1973)--be buried beside
the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. The World War II and Korean War unknowns were buried in
marble-capped crypts at the head of the tomb on Memorial Day in 1958. The unknown serviceman of
the Vietnam War was buried between them during a Memorial Day ceremony in 1984.

The World War II unknown was chosen from two unidentified soldiers by an American sailor,
Hospitalman William Charette, in a ceremony aboard the cruiser Canberra off Norfolk, Virginia. The
Korean War unknown was chosen by an American soldier, Sergeant Ned Lyle, from the unidentified
dead of that war buried in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific at Honolulu, Hawaii.
The Vietnam War unknown was the only American serviceman known to have been killed in that
war whose remains could not be identified. At the time of the ceremony, however,
more than 2,400 servicemen were still listed as missing.

An amphitheater, funded by the Grand Army of the Republic in honor of military forces killed in
battle, stands near the tomb. Memorial Day services are held there each year. An honor guard
from the 1st Battalion Group, 3rd Infantry, Fort Myer, Virginia, keeps a sentry on duty at all times.
The sentry is changed every hour during the day between October 1 and March 31, and every half
hour between April 1 and September 30. The sentry is changed every two hours at night.


From World Book: National cemetery is a burial place for men and women who served in the armed
forces of the United States. Veterans are eligible to be buried in a national cemetery unless they
received a dishonorable discharge. In addition, the spouses and dependent children of these veterans
may be buried in national cemetaries. The government maintains 129 national cemeteries throughout
the United States and Puerto Rico. More than 50 of them have no space for additional graves.
Almost 2 million people are buried in national cemeteries.

Four government agencies operate the national cemeteries. The Department of Veterans Affairs
maintains 114 of the cemeteries. The National Park Service is responsible for 14 national cemeteries
that are part of historic sites. The Department of the Army operates 2 cemeteries--Arlington
National Cemetery in Arlington, Va., and Soldiers Home National Cemetery in Washington, D.C.. The
American Battle Monuments Commission maintains all U.S. military cemeteries
outside the United States and its possessions.

The Department of Veterans Affairs provides headstones and markers for all graves in national
cemeteries and for all graves of veterans that do not have them. These graves
include those of Civil War soldiers.

The national cemetery system was established in 1862, during the Civil War. That year, Congress
granted President Abraham Lincoln permission to establish cemeteries for Union Army veterans.

One of the best-known national cemeteries operated by the National Park Service is in Gettysburg, Pa.
A crucial Civil War battle was fought in Gettysburg in July 1863. On November 19 that year, Lincoln
delivered his Gettysburg Address at a ceremony dedicating part of the battlefield as a cemetery.
The other historic cemeteries operated by the National Park Service are Andersonville in Georgia;
Andrew Johnson, Fort Donelson, Pittsburg Landing, and Stones River in Tennessee; Antietam
in Maryland; Battleground in Washington, D.C.; Chalmette in Louisiana; Custer at Little
Bighorn Battlefield National Monument in Montana; Fredericksburg, Poplar Grove,
and Yorktown in Virginia; and Vicksburg in Mississippi.


Memorial Day Email Cards:
Memorial Day is observed
May 30th, 2011~
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