2017 Memorial Day at Fort Laramie National Historic Site

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Join Fort Laramie NHS on Memorial Day Monday, May 29, 2017 as it preserves the many stories of the past and present in a National Moment of Remembrance. At noon, staff and visitors will gather at the historic flagpole as park personnel dressed in period military uniforms raise the flag to full staff. An artillery salute will be fired and taps will be played by the Chief Musician. At 3:00 p.m., staff and visitors will gather again, on the parade ground to observe the national moment of silence. If you are unable to attend the ceremony at the Fort, all Americans, alone or with family and friends, may want to pause at 3:00 p.m. for a moment of reflection and national unity to demonstrate your gratitude by honoring those who died for our freedom.


The concept of a Memorial Day to honor the fallen began shortly after the Civil War. General John Logan, national commander of the Union veteran group, the Grand Army of the Republic, officially proclaimed Decoration Day May 5, 1868. Late May was chosen in consideration that the Civil War ended that month and because flowers to decorate graves were plentiful at that time of year. The event was first observed on May 30, 1868, and that year over 200 cities and towns held ceremonies and parades to cemeteries. A year later, nearly 350 towns had celebrations, and by the 1880's the holiday was commemorated in nearly every city and small town throughout the north. In 1882 the name Decoration Day was changed to Memorial Day as commemorations expanded beyond the laying of flowers over soldiers' graves.


More recently, the National Moment of Remembrance was established by Congress on December 28, 2000 to honor Americans who died in service to the nation. Through partnerships with local communities, private businesses, and government at all levels, the National Moment of Remembrance Commission encourages all Americans to celebrate Memorial Day as a sacred and noble holiday that honors fellow Americans who paid the ultimate price for freedom.


For more information on Fort Laramie National Historic Site’s 2017 Special Events or summer program offerings visit the park website at www.nps.gov/fola or call the park at 307-837-2221. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.  


About the National Park Service: More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 417 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more atwww.nps.gov.

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