Veterans’ Day Facts

Veterans' Day Facts
  • Veterans’ Day is always observed on November 11.
  • On Veterans’ Day, Americans honor all living military veterans, including the many working moms who are veterans of military service.
  • Veterans’ Day is celebrated with speeches and parades across the U.S.
  • The holiday began as Armistice Day on Nov. 11, 1919, the first anniversary of the end of World War I.
  • In 1926, Congress passed a resolution for an annual observance.
  • In 1938, Nov. 11 became a national holiday.
  • In 1954, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed legislation changing the name to Veterans’ Day in order to honor veterans of all American wars.
  • On November 11, 1921, an unidentified American soldier killed in the war was buried at Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, D.C. It is called the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. An official wreath-laying ceremony is held each Veterans’ Day at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington National Cemetery. Usually the president, or another high-ranking government official, lays the wreath on the grave.
  • Britain, France, Australia and Canada also commemorate the veterans of World Wars I and II on or near November 11th. Canada has Remembrance Day, while Britain has Remembrance Sunday (the second Sunday of November). In Europe, Britain and the Commonwealth countries it is common to observe two minutes of silence at 11 a.m. every November 11.
  • Veterans’ Day should not be confused with Memorial Day. According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, “Memorial Day (the fourth Monday in May) honors American service members who died in service to their country or as a result of injuries incurred during battle, while Veterans Day pays tribute to all American veterans–living or dead–but especially gives thanks to living veterans who served their country honorably during war or peacetime.”