What was Memorial Day originally called?
Answer: Decoration Day
If you saw our post a few days ago, you already know that Memorial Day originally had a different name. As mentioned, "Decoration Day" has its origins in the Civil War when, in 1864, women from Boalsburg, Pa., put flowers on the graves of their dead loved ones who had just fought in the battle of Gettysburg. Later on General Logan, commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, mandated that May 30, 1868 be designated "for the purpose of strewing with flowers, or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion." The holiday was originally known as "Decoration Day" so that people could take the time to decorate graves with flowers, wreaths, and flags. The name "Decoration Day" didn't disappear until after World War II. Federal law declared "Memorial Day" the official name in 1967.
CNN - It is customary on Memorial Day to fly the flag at half-staff until noon, and then raise it to the top of the staff until sunset.
CNN - The World War I poem "In Flanders Fields," by John McCrea, inspired the Memorial Day custom of wearing red artificial poppies. In 1915, a Georgia teacher and volunteer war worker named Moina Michael began a campaign to make the poppy a symbol of tribute to veterans and for "keeping the faith with all who died." The sale of poppies has supported the work of the Veterans of Foreign Wars.