President Eisenhower signing the bill which changed Armistice Day to Veterans Day
A Short History of Veterans Day: A celebration to honor America’s Veterans
World War I ended when an armistice between the Allied nations and Germany went into effect on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month.
In 1919, President Wilson proclaimed November 11 as the first commemoration of Armistice Day.
Armistice Day was primarily a day set aside to honor Veterans of World War I, but in 1954, because World War II had required the greatest mobilization of soldiers, sailors, Marines and airmen in the nation’s history, and after American forces had fought aggression in Korea, Congress removed the word “Armistice” and inserted in its place the word “Veterans.”
November 11th then became a day to honor American Veterans of all wars.
Later that same year, President Dwight D. Eisenhower issued the first “Veterans Day Proclamation” (pdf) which stated: “In order to insure proper and widespread observance of this anniversary, all Veterans, all Veterans’ organizations, and the entire citizenry will wish to join hands in this common purpose.”
Veterans Day continues to be observed on November 11, regardless of what day of the week on which it falls.
Veterans Day, November 11, not only preserves the historical significance of the date, but helps focus attention on the important purpose of Veterans Day: A celebration to honor America’s Veterans for their patriotism, love of country, and willingness to serve and sacrifice for the common good.
VA Medical Centers across the country are celebrating Veterans Day. See what your Medical Center is doing to mark the day.
Just a few of the scheduled celebrations: