The Town of Halifax Office of Veteran Services along with the Halifax Board of Selectmen will be hosting the Town’s Annual Memorial Day Ceremony as well as a Memorial Day Parade on Monday May 29, 2023, from 9:30 a.m. through 12:30 p.m. The parade will begin at 9:30 a.m. at the Halifax Country Club and conclude at the Town Hall, 499 Plymouth Street, at around 10 a.m. to begin the ceremony. The ceremony will be outdoors in front of Town Hall. The Office of Veteran Services and Board of Selectmen welcome anyone to join us in remembering and honoring all of the heroes who gave the ultimate sacrifice.
Halifax Generations, a 501(c)3 organization established solely to support the Halifax Council on Aging and community it serves, will be hosting an outdoor cookout following the ceremony which will include a hot dog, bag of chips, and bottled water for five (5) dollars. Proceeds will go towards supporting the Council on Aging’s expansion of programs and services. We invite everyone to stay and enjoy some fellowship after the ceremony.
For questions, you may contact the Office of Veteran Services by calling (781) 293-1724 or e-mailing Steve Littlefield, Director of Veteran Services at Steve.Littlefield@halifax-ma.org.
History of Memorial Day
Originally called Decoration Day, from the early tradition of decorating graves with flowers, wreaths and flags, Memorial Day is a day for remembrance of those who have died in service to our country. It was first widely observed on May 30, 1868 to commemorate the sacrifices of Civil War soldiers, by proclamation of Gen. John A. Logan of the Grand Army of the Republic, an organization of former Union sailors and soldiers.
During that first national commemoration, former Union Gen. and sitting Ohio Congressman James Garfield made a speech at Arlington National Cemetery, after which 5,000 participants helped to decorate the graves of the more than 20,000 Union and Confederate soldiers who were buried there.
This national event galvanized efforts to honor and remember fallen soldiers that began with local observances at burial grounds in several towns throughout the United States following the end of the Civil War, such as the May 1, 1865 gathering in Charleston, South Carolina organized by freed slaves to pay tribute and give proper burial to Union troops.
In 1873, New York was the first state to designate Memorial Day as a legal holiday. By the late 1800s, many more cities and communities observed Memorial Day, and several states had declared it a legal holiday.
After World War I, it became an occasion for honoring those who died in all of America’s wars and was then more widely established as a national holiday throughout the United States.
Program of Events
A program of events is being finalized and will be available online at halifax-ma.org or by using the link below. Please continue to visit halifax-ma.org for updates.
Download 2023 Memorial Day Ceremony and Parade – Program of Events (PDF)