Battle of June 9, 1864

Ladies' Memorial Association

Grand Army of the Republic

Mrs. Logan Inspired by Memorial Observances in Petersburg

General Order Number 11







Welcome to the web site for reliable information on the inspiration and origins in Petersburg, Virginia, of our National Memorial Day.

Introduction: Memorial days did not start in Petersburg, Virginia; Waterloo, New York; or any other city in the United States. Memorial days upon which the graves of the communities' heroes were decorated with flowers and garlands are ancient customs originating in Greece 2,500 years ago.

Memorial days were set aside during the American Civil War in both the United States and the Confederate States of America.

Following the Civil War, also known as the War Between the States, various communities started having memorial services for the war dead. The city of Waterloo, New York was officially recognized as the place where the first memorial services were held after the Civil War.

Petersburg, Virginia, has a clear, unbroken, logical chain of events making it the inspiration for and origin of the NATIONAL Memorial Day.

The pages following will describe the CHAIN OF EVENTS showing PETERSBURG, VIRGINIA, as having the unique right to be considered the INSPIRATION FOR AND ORIGIN OF the NATIONAL MEMORIAL DAY, not memorial day as a concept or practice, but America's true NATIONAL MEMORIAL DAY. These pages contain a detailed, scholarly account of the events and principal personalities that formed our NATIONAL MEMORIAL DAY.


Copyright © 2002 James H. Ryan, Ph.D
All Rights Reserved