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On May 8, 1919, Edward George Honey, a journalist from Melbourne, Australia, living in London at the time, writes a letter to the London Evening News proposing that the first anniversary of the armistice ending World War I—concluded on November 11, 1918—be commemorated by several moments of silence.
Honey, who briefly served in the British army during World War I before being discharged with a leg injury, had been concerned by the way people in London had celebrated on the streets on the actual day of the armistice. In his letter to the newspaper the following May, he wrote that a silent commemoration of the sacrifices made and the lives lost during the war would be a far more appropriate way to mark the first anniversary of its end.
"Five little minutes only," Honey wrote. "Five silent minutes of national remembrance. A very sacred intercession. Communion with the Glorious Dead who won us peace, and from the communion new strength, hope and faith in the morrow. Church services, too, if you will, but in the street, the home, the theatre, anywhere, indeed, where Englishmen and their women chance to be, surely in this five minutes of bitter-sweet silence there will be service enough.”
Though Honey’s letter did not immediately bring about a change, a similar suggestion was made to Sir Percy Fitzpatrick that October and reached King George V, who on November 17, 1919, made an official proclamation that at the hour when the Armistice came into force, the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, there may be for the brief space of two minutes a complete suspension of all our normal activities so that in perfect stillness, the thoughts of everyone may be concentrated on reverent remembrance of the glorious dead.” Though it is not officially recorded that the king read and was influenced by Honey’s letter, the journalist was invited by the king to a palace rehearsal of the two minutes of silence, a tradition which is still honored in much of the former British empire.
READ MORE: Armistice Day: World War I Ends
Why Was Veterans Day Called Armistice Day 2021 | Facts and Figures
Why was Veterans Day called armistice day 2021? The Armistice Day commemorates the signing between the allies and Germany at 11 am on 11 November 1918. This celebration is on the 11 th hour of the 11 th month of the 11 th date so the people become very much anxious about this proper celebration. This Armistice Day is in the four years of World War 1. This day was firstly called Armistice Day so we put them aside and honor the veterans day of World War 1.
When was Armistice Day Changed to Veterans Day 2020?
Firstly, the person who proposed the Armistice Day to veterans day was Alvin J. King. This idea came to his mind after the realization that the army suffers a lot during the war times. We should give our army some time to rest. Firstly this day was on the fourth Monday of October. But after the world war, 2 president Dwight d Eisenhower changed this name and marked this day as the special celebration for troops.
Why is veterans day celebrated on November 11 at 11 am?
The reason for the 11 November at 11 am celebration is that this day is basically the signing of the agreement between allied nations and Germany in 1918. So we celebrate the veterans day 2020 in a very good manner. We wish you all the best for the veterans’ day 2020.
Symbols and tributes
Many will recognise the blood-red poppy as a symbol of remembrance, for its worn on Remembrance Day and at other commemorative events throughout the year.
This tradition has its origins during the First World War and inspired by the fields of poppies that grew in the battle-ravaged fields of the Western Front. In soldiers' folklore, the vivid red of the poppy came from the blood of their comrades soaking the ground.
After attending the funeral of friend and fellow soldier who died in the Second Battle of Ypres in 1915, Canadian doctor Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae wrote the touching and enduring poem In Flanders Fields. It has since become one of the most popular and quoted poems of the First World War.
Moved by Lieutenant Colonel McCrae’s words, in 1918 an American YMCA member Moina Michael vowed she would always wear a red poppy to honour the men and women who fought and helped in the war. She began sourcing and crafting silk poppies for others, and worked tirelessly to share her passion with anyone who would listen.
With the help of organisations such as the American Legion and people like Anna Guérin, a French YMCA secretariat, they took the idea further by selling poppies to raise money for veterans, their widows, orphans, and families.
Eventually Ms Michael’s idea caught on, and soon poppies were being worn with pride all around the world. The tradition continues to this very day, and Australian organisations representing returned defence force personnel provide millions of poppies to the public each year.
There’s no right or wrong way to wear a poppy. The best way to wear a poppy is with respect and pride.
From Armistice to Veterans Day
November 11 is Veterans Day. Visit the National Archives website to learn more about our resources and events related to the holiday. Today’s post comes from Paige Weaver, an intern in the National Archives History Office.
On the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in the year 1918, World War I came to an end. In honor of this significant moment in history, we in the U.S. celebrate and remember all of the brave men and women who have served in the armed forces on November 11 as Veterans Day. This public holiday coincides with Armistice Day, which is a national holiday in many of the other countries, and once was one in the United States.
On the first anniversary of the truce between the Allied and Central Powers ending World War I, Woodrow Wilson issued a special message on Armistice Day to commemorate the heroic soldiers who fought in the war. Congress later made November 11 a public holiday “to be dedicated to the cause of world peace and to be thereafter celebrated and known as ‘Armistice Day.'”
After World War II, Raymond Weeks, a Navy veteran from the war, organized a day of festivities on November 11, 1947, in Birmingham, Alabama, to celebrate all veterans who had served in the United States armed forces, not just those who fought in World War I. Weeks was so dedicated to the idea that he sent petitions and letters to Congress, and the President advocating for the national public holiday.
Inspired by Weeks’s passion and enthusiasm, Representative Ed Rees of Kansas introduced a bill to Congress to officially change November 11 from a day that only commemorated veterans from World War I to a celebration of all military veterans.
Weeks finally saw his dreams of a day dedicated to honoring all military veterans come to fruition on May 26, 1954, when President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed a law designating November 11 as a day to memorialize veterans who represented and fought for the United States in any war. Just a few days later, on June 1, Congress altered the formal name of the holiday from “Armistice Day” to “Veterans Day.”
Although it was briefly changed to be celebrated on the fourth Monday of October in accordance with the Uniform Monday Holiday Act from 1971 until 1977, Veterans Day was permanently changed back to November 11 due to the historical significance of the day.
This November 11, as you celebrate all of the brave men and women who have defended our country through their military service throughout the years, recall the historical significance of the day.
Read the blog “Veterans’ Military Records—We’ve Got Them,” to learn more about veterans’ records at the National Archives.
Armistice Day Celebrations Around the World
On the "eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month" of 1918, hostilities on the Western Front of World War I ceased in response to the armistice signed by the Allies and Germany. Each year since, on the anniversary of that date, the allied nations honor members of their armed forces on the so-called Armistice Day. While we now call it something different here in America, the sentiment is the same. So let's take a look at how different countries paid respect to war veterans, past and present, today.
1. Sydney, Australia
In Sydney, Australian veterans gathered for what they call Remembrance Day at the Sydney Cenotaph at Martin Palace. The monument to World War I dates to 1927 with an inscription that reads "To Our Glorious Dead" on one side and "Lest We Forget" on the other.
2. British Troops In Kandahar, Afghanistan
Active members of the service took a moment of silence to honor military men and women who came before them.
3. Glasgow, Scotland
One of the huge projections on Glasgow's City Chambers tonight. #armisticeday HT @GlasgowCC pic.twitter.com/52PWTkwe2F
— Scott Reid (@scottreid1980) November 11, 2014
Glasgow celebrated Armistice Day with a 27-minute long narrative light show projected onto the Glasgow City Chambers building.
4. Ottawa, Canada
An estimated 50,000 or more people crowded into Confederation Square today to place poppies on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
5. Edinburgh, Scotland
Veterans and members of the general public alike gathered at the garden of remembrance in Princess Street Gardens.
6. Notre-Dame-de-Lorette, France
The French President Francois Hollande marked the anniversary of the armistice today with the unveiling of a new international war memorial at Notre-Dame-de-Lorette. On the so-called The Ring of Memory are the names of 600,000 soldiers from over 40 countries who died in the region during the war.
7. London, England
The Tower of London hosted perhaps the most striking celebration today. Over the past several months, 888,246 glass poppies—one for each of the British and Commonwealth soldiers killed in the war—have been "planted" in the moat, with the final flower added today.
Armistice Day: 100 Years Since the end of WWI
Paris. A “gob,” two “Tommys,” and a Red Cross girl went to make up this merry quartette in Paris on Armistice Day. Paris, Seine, France. November 11, 1918. Caption from Catalogue of Official A.E.F. photographs taken by the Signal Corps, U.S.A., 1919. The two British soldiers (“Tommys”) are on the far right and far left. The man on the left plays a concertina. The woman in the Red Cross uniform holds an American flag and an unidentified flag. “Gob” was slang for a sailor and this sailor wears a United States Navy uniform of the day. //hdl.loc.gov/loc.pnp/anrc.00488a
November 11, 2018 is the 100th anniversary of the formal end of World War I. It seems appropriate to say something about what this new day meant and came to mean. Also, I want to provide some highlights of Folklife Today blogs that marked the 100th anniversary of World War I. These were a part of the American Folklife Center’s participation in the exhibition Echoes of the Great War: American Experiences of World War I (April 4, 2017–January 21, 2019) and events that further enhanced that presentation.
At the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, the war was formally declared to be over. The first Armistice Day was a celebration of peace. The belief was that the World War was an war to end wars and so peace would be lasting. Armistice Day in subsequent years was seen as a time to reflect on the cost of the World War and on how to maintain peace. The responses of crowds hearing that the armistice documents had been signed were typically boisterous, with more solemn reflections following later. The photo of three unidentified servicemen and a woman in a Red Cross uniform captures a particularly nice example of the kind of spontaneous celebrating in the streets that occurred in Europe, as well as in the streets of many US cities.
The celebrating did not stop on November 11. Troops remained in Europe for a time, with various groups returning As servicemen returned home there were parades in their honor. Some types of events common during the war, such as fundraisers for the Red Cross and for wounded soldiers, continued to be part of the calendar of events. Certain holidays, especially the 4th of July, became another day to celebrate the end of the war and to honor the veterans.
Popular music added to the celebrations with songs such as “Everybody’s Happy Now,” y Kendis, Brockman & Vincent (sheet music at the link). Scottish comedian, singer, and songwriter, Harry Lauder, who had come to the United States in 1917 to perform for troops preparing to go to war, returned with a new song, “Don’t let us sing anymore about war, just let us sing of love” (recording at the link).
In the years that followed World War I, the Armistice was marked in many different ways. Memorial Day, which had emerged after the Civil War as a day to clean and decorate the graves of soldiers, began to emerge as a day for visiting the graves of all those who died in military service. The day varied locally and it was some time before it became distinct from other spring traditions of caring for family graves, but the features of what we call Memorial Day today began to develop. In France, Belgium, Britain and the Commonwealth, it was November 11th that became Remembrance Day for honoring the dead of the First World War. In the US, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier was established in Arlington National Cemetery in March of 1921 for the burial of the remains of an unidentified soldier from World War I. On May 30, the same year, the remains of four unknown US soldiers were brought home from France and interred on the same site.
Following World War II a new national day honoring all US war veterans was conceived. Distinct from Memorial Day, it provided opportunities to pay tribute to living veterans, as had been a custom developed for Armistice Day. President Eisenhower established Veterans Day in 1954 on the day previously marked as Armistice Day.
Folklife Today blogs relating to World War I can be found at this link. There you will find some blogs specifically related to the end of the war:
“World Overturned” by Rachel Telford, provides an introduction to the third part of the Veterans History Project’s companion site to the exhibit, World War I: Echoes of the Great War. By the time the Veterans History Project began, very few veterans of World War I were still living. But in addition to the few precious interviews they were able to record, there are diaries, letters, and photographs that veterans left behind, often donated by their families that provide a wealth of first-hand stories of war experiences.
“World War I Homecomings,” is one of several blogs written by Junior Fellows working on the Veterans History Project, Irene Lule. She tells about some of the collections she worked on that tell of soldiers as they came home from the war.
“Over There,” by Rachel Telford, tells a bit about how some of those stories of the war were told. Soldiers sometimes did not write down their stories in letters from the war, fearing how those truths would affect those at home, but felt more comfortable writing them down after the war ended. At armistice, Francis Edward Mahoney wrote a letter home with “ I never told you about the front Ma, because I was afraid you would worry but now it is all over and safe I guess it is alright.” I was especially interested in the account of Norvel Preston Clotfelter, included in this essay. His story includes one of the most frightening realities of the end of World War I, the influenza epidemic of 1918-1919. The “Spanish flu” was so named because of a false perception that the disease mainly affected Spain, because news blackouts of it were not in effect for Spain. It is now thought to have killed between 50 and 100 million people worldwide and was likely the most deadly pandemic in recorded history. Its victims were mainly young healthy adults, so some soldiers who survived the war only to die of the flu. The transcription of Chotfelter’s war diary includes a day-by day record of his experience, and fortunately he recovered.
Some other highlights of the ways Folklife Today marked the 100th anniversary of the US participation in the war show how examining oral history, fashion, and folklife provides a fuller picture of the war than is often found in the standard histories most of us were taught in school.
I enjoyed Irene Lule’s blog on “Postcards of World War I,”use it showed some examples of the picture postcards that soldiers were able to make themselves in that war.
“VHP WWI Nurses and Fashion Savvy Influence,” byꃊndace Milburn gives a glimpse of the lives of nurses.
For myself, I knew immediately what I wanted to write about for the 100th anniversary of the war, as I knew of two remarkable recordings of songs that were made during John and Alan Lomax’s recording trip in Louisiana in 1934. Few songs of African Americans who served in World War I survive today. Although I suspect there were many soldiers who made songs about their adventures, few were recorded. “’Trench Blues’: An African American Song of World War I”ਊnd “’When I First Got Ready For the War,’ a Song of World War I” present these two songs and what we know about the singer/composers.
But the most moving of all these moving stories of World War I relates to a diary acquired by the Veterans History Project in 2016. “New VHP Acquisition: Irving Greenwald’s WWI Diary,” by Megan Harris, tells about this diary and how it was received. Greenwald was one of the soldiers in the “lost battalion,” that became separated in the denseਊrgonne Forest in October 1918. He was wounded, and so this particular part of the story is not part of the diary, though his recovery from injuries is. In 2017 the story Greenwald told was brought to life by playwright and performerouglas Taurel in the Library of Congress Coolidge Auditorium, and is now available as a webcastਊs the first hour of a Veterans Day presentation (also on Library of Congress YouTube).
So on this, the 100th anniversary of Armistice Day, check out these and more Folklife Today blogs related to WWI, as well as the exhibitions and collection items they link to, and learn something about the Great War that you never knew before.
Moore, Ryan. “Mapping Armistice Day: 11 November 1918,” World Revealed: Geography and Maps at the Library of Congress, November 9, 2018.
- Search the collection American Life Histories: Manuscripts from the Federal Writers’ Project, 1936 to 1940 on world war to read more recollections of World War I.
- View Woodrow Wilson’s notes, written in shorthand, for his Fourteen Points address. In this famous address to Congress on January 8, 1918, Wilson outlined the terms that he believed should be used as the basis for the treaty ending the First World War.
- View online exhibits created by the Library to commemorate various conflicts where our veterans have given their service. The following are examples:
Why We Must Reclaim ‘Armistice Day’
Once upon a time a self-styled progressive American president who had only just won re-election on the slogan “he kept us out of war,” led the U.S. into the midst of the bloodiest worldwide conflict in history.
Europeans dubbed it the Great War. Americans today remember it as World War One, and recall it as little more than a precursor of an even more violent Second World War. In reality, Democrat Woodrow Wilson’s justification for entering the war as a freedom crusade, as a “war to end all wars,” was, ultimately, little more than rhetorical cover for what amounted to a war in support of one group of empires, the British and French, against another, German and Austrian.
Indeed, in a certain sense, it was a bankers’ war. While the ostensibly “neutral” United States acceded to the British Navy’s starvation blockade of Germany, Washington simultaneously traded war materials with its Anglo brothers and floated London vital loans numbering in the billions of dollars. Clearly, by 1917, after three years of macabre massacre, Washington had a pecuniary interest in British victory.
That may not be the version of First World War history that most Americans learned in elementary or high school. Even less well known is the cynicism and civil liberties suppression of the “Progressive”-in-chief, President Wilson. His strongman tactics : imprisonment of peaceful antiwar activists under the Sedition Act, detainment of pacifists in prison camps, and prosecution of critical journalists under the (still statute law) Espionage Act, are abhorrent enough. Worse still, however, was the reflexive manner in which the progressive “left” quickly fell in line with their president. The left eats its own maybe it always has. Immense majorities of “progressive s,”just like their socialist brethren in Europe, supported Wilson and the war in spite of past records of more dovish positions. They then proceeded to attack, suppress, and often professionally ruin, or imprison, their former compatriots —relabeled as “radicals”—such as Randolph Bourne and Eugene Debs .
Nonetheless, for all of World War I’s horror, futility, absurdity even, the veterans of the war collectively emerged from the sodden trenches imbued with a vocal philosophy of never again . Indeed, they celebrated the moment the guns finally fell silent, the 11th minute, or the 11th hour, of the 11th day, of the 11th month, 1918, as Armistice Day. It was, romantic as it now seems, widely believed that theirs would be the last war. In fact, millions of lucky survivors left the war deeply dedicated to ensuring that be the case. Much of the finest Western literature of the 20th century, unsurprisingly, generated from the pens of disgruntled, damaged veterans—Hemingway, Graves, Fitzgerald, Sassoon, and many more—forever changed by the experience of needless war.
It was only 20 paltry years later and another world war that the celebration of Armistice Day—inherently imbued with hopes for a more peaceful future—had to be lifelessly renamed (in America, at least) Veterans’ Day. The “beauty” of today’s November 11 celebration is its very anodyne nature. There are no hopes, no dreams, no politics even, associated with a day that’s come to symbolize and mandate little more than a brief pause to vapidly “thank” the nearest veteran for his or her “service.”
What’s more, Americans in 2019, a century and a year removed from the original day, not only know almost nothing about the holiday’s history, but are treated to a reboot of that history first as tragedy, now as farce. Neoconservative establishment Republicans certainly own much of the responsibility for the nation’s current ongoing forever wars. That must be said. Nonetheless, the supposed “left,” is once again enabling perpetual, unwinnable, mostly unsanctioned, combat.
Much of this has to do with what I’ve long labeled Trump derangement syndrome , the reflexive penchant of Democrats to oppose all that this president is for and to support all that he’s against. It runs both ways. That’s why we have a crackpot Congress in which Dems only vote against the wars Trump likes . Those he (mostly rhetorically) dislikes, well, they love. See, for them, it’s about politics, not patriotism. Partisanship, not prudence. And no, I’m hardly obviating Republican complicity in the tribal game that treats today’s veterans as little more than proxies and pawns in a sardonic gambit based, not on their well-being, but on which party earns “ a win ” prior to the next national election.
The game is rigged, and we ain’t in it! For proof, pay attention this Monday as both Dem and Republican politicians, both red and blue media, hyperbolically (and frankly embarrassingly) extoll the virtues of America’s soldiers who kill and die for about $30k a year, who are still deployed in dozens of combat zones that few citizens could locate on a map. That’s evidence, and it’s instructive. My fellow veterans don’t necessarily need more thanks. We need, instead, your attention, your support, your careful deployment of our energies and sacrifices only in defense of the most vital national interests and the homeland itself. Most of all we need the reinvigorated dream of Armistice Day—-a holiday imbued with hopes and dreams for a better world. At the very least, for a nation that chooses not to wage forever war.
The focus of remembrance for the dead of the First World War originally fell on Armistice Day itself, commencing in 1919. As well as the National Service in London, events were staged at town and village war memorials, often featuring processions of civic dignitaries and veterans. 
The first UK commemoration of the end of World War 1 at Buckingham Palace, with King George V hosting a "Banquet in Honour of The President of the French Republic" . A two-minute silence was observed at 11am on 11 November 1919.
While the initial, spontaneous public reaction when the Armistice was signed on the 11 November 1918 was jubilation and celebration, the 1919 banquet was criticised for being too celebratory.
The following year, Armistice Day in 1920, the funeral of Unknown Soldier took place at the London Cenotaph and a two-minute silence was observed throughout the nation. Buses halted, electricity was cut to tram lines, and even trading on the London Stock Exchange halted.
Starting in 1921, the Royal British Legion began selling Remembrance Poppies to raise funds for ex-service men. Throughout the 1920s and 1930s the character of the remembrance events became politicised. While for some, Armistice Day was a day for recognising the horrors of war, never to be repeated for others the day symbolised the honour of military service.
In 1923 a Christian Pacifist MP was elected to parliament. In the middle 1930s the Peace Pledge Union gained wide support. Pacifism gained great publicity from a 1933 student debate in the Oxford University Union that voted for a resolution that 'this House will in no circumstances fight for King and Country'. The first White Poppy were sold by the Co-operative Women's Guild in 1933.
During the Second World War, the commemorations were moved to the Sunday preceding 11 November as an emergency measure to avoid disruption of the production of vital war materials.
In May 1945, just before VE Day, the new government began consultation with the churches and the British Legion on the future of remembrance. Armistice Day in 1945 actually fell on a Sunday, avoiding the need to change the wartime practice. Some thought that to continue with the 11 November would focus more on the First World War and downplay the importance of the Second. Other dates suggested were 8 May (VE Day), 6 June (D-Day), 15 August (VJ Day), 3 September (the declaration of war), and even 15 June (the signing of the Magna Carta in 1215). The Archbishop of Westminster proposed that the second Sunday in November should be named Remembrance Sunday in commemoration of both World Wars, a suggestion which was endorsed by the Home Office in January 1946.  In June of that year, the prime minister, Clement Attlee, announced in the House of Commons that "the Government felt that this view would commend itself to all quarters of the country. I am glad to say that it has now found general acceptance here and has been approved by The King." 
The History of Veterans Day
Here's what you should know about the day dedicated to those who serve and protect.
Every year on November 11, we celebrate Veterans Day to honor those who have served and protected our nation. The holiday began as Armistice Day, which marked the end of World War I as the allied forces and Germany agreed to a ceasefire.
We started commemorating Armistice Day in 1919. Then, in 1926, Congress declared that Armistice Day would become an &ldquoannual observance.&rdquo
The day became a national holiday in 1938 and in 1954 Congress amended their resolution by swapping out the word &lsquoArmistice&rsquo for &lsquoVeterans,&rsquo and we&rsquove been celebrating it ever since.
Well, except for that time when the Veterans Day date was changed.
Why Veteran's Day Date Changed
In 1968, Congress ratified the Uniform Monday Holiday Act, which moved several holidays so that they fell on Mondays, giving federal employees three day weekends.
One of the moved holidays was Veterans Day, the first of which was commemorated on Monday, October 25, 1971. People didn&rsquot care for the change and many continued observing the holiday on November 11.
The number 11 is actually very important for Veterans day as its a reference to the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, when World War 1 formally ended, so changing it to October didn't go over well.
Luckily, President Gerald R. Ford nullified the ratification in 1975 and in 1978 Veterans Day was officially held on November 11 once more.
Veterans Day vs. Memorial Day
Veterans Day often gets confused with Memorial Day, but the two are not the same. For one, Memorial Day is observed on the last Monday of May&mdashVeterans Day is fixed and always occurs on November 11.
But the most distinguishing factor that differentiates Veterans Day from Memorial Day is that Veterans Day honors all armed forces while Memorial Day honors those who have passed away while in service.
Other countries also celebrate their own versions of Veterans Day by honoring their service members. Both Canada and Australia observe "Remembrance Day" on November 11 while Britain celebrates their own Remembrance Day on the Sunday that falls closest to November 11.
Dog lovers will be thrilled to know that the canines who protect and serve also get their own Veterans Day on March 13. Although the holiday is unofficial, many observe it to honor the K-9 Corps which was founded in 1942 during World War II.
There are several ways to honor our armed forces on Veterans Day&mdashyou can hold your own moment of silence or participate in the national two minutes of silence based on your local time zone.