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  • Writer's pictureRay Benavidez

The History of Veterans Day

Out of 10 holidays in November, Veterans Day is probably the most significant out of the whole month. However, a lot of people just view this day as a “free day off” without the full knowledge of what the holiday is about. Some people know the fact that the day is to celebrate and honor veterans across the country, but other people don’t even know how it started.

First known as Armistice Day, when President Woodrow Wilson dedicated November 11th 1919 to be a day to celebrate the end of the first World War. It wasn’t until 1926 when official ceremonies took place in order to honor veterans, both living and dead. Finally, on May 13th 1938, Armistice Day was nationally declared by Congress to be a federal holiday. But as the years went on, more and more wars began to break out. Suddenly, Armistice Day just wasn’t about the veterans in WW1, but for veterans/soldiers in general. Then, on May 26 1954, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed the bill to rename Armistice Day into Veterans Day to honor veterans from WW2 and on. On June 1st 1954, Congress officially changed Armistice Day into Veterans Day.

In many other countries across the world, they also celebrate Veterans Day, or at least something similar. For example, in the British Commonwealth, their version of Veterans Day is called Remembrance Day and is dedicated to the people that have served in WW1. Other holidays that are similar can include Women’s Veterans Day (for women veterans who served in all kinds of wars), Armed Forces Day (for people currently serving in the military), and also Memorial Day (which is for people who died during their service, not after).

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