On Memorial Day, which was initially known as Decoration Day, from an old tradition to decorate graves, people commemorate the ones who died serving to America. For the first time, Memorial Day was widely observed on the 30th of May, 1868, in order to commemorate the soldiers who died during the Civil War. On that celebration, Union General and Ohio Congressman made a speech, after which 5 thousand people helped in decorating the graves of more than 20 thousand soldiers.
The first celebration of Memorial Day was inspired by the observances of this day, which were held in several American towns in 3 years after the Civil War. In 1873, the citizens of New York first celebrated Memorial Day as an official holiday. By the beginning of 1900’s, a lot of states had observed this day. It should be noted that some of the states declared Memorial Day as a legal holiday. When the World War I ended, on this day people started to honor the ones who died in all the wars, and Memorial Day was proclaimed as a national holiday in the majority of the US states.
The Act passed by the Congress in 1971 stated that Memorial Day ought to be celebrated on the last Monday of May annually. However, in several southern states, people celebrate an additional day in order to honor all the Confederate War dead. For instance, the 19th of January is celebrated in Taxes, the 26th of April - in Georgia and Florida, the 10th of May - in North and South Carolina, the 3rd of June - in Louisiana and Tennessee, the third Monday of January - in Arkansas, the last Monday of May - in Virginia, the fourth Monday of April - in Alabama and Mississippi.
On this day, a celebration is annually held at the Arlington National Cemetery during which the national flag is placed on every grave. On Memorial Day, the President of the USA usually lays a gorgeous wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. More than 7 thousand US people attend the following ceremony each year.