Memorial Day

American Holiday

Memorial Day is a federal holiday celebrated on the last Monday in May. It is a day of remembrance for those who have died in military service. It began with various days of remembrance following the Civil War, and was originally called Decoration Day. In 1888, just three years after the end of the war, former Union General John A. Logan and then head of the Union veterans groups, declared Decoration Day as a national annual event to be observed by veterans groups, and set May 30 as the date. The name Memorial Day was not used on a widespread basis until after World War I, and it was not set by law as the official name until 1967. In 1968, Memorial Day was moved to the last Monday in May in order to create a three-day holiday weekend. Several other countries besides America celebrate their own versions of Memorial Day.