On the first Decoration Day in 1868, Gen. James Garfield spoke at Arlington National Cemetery where some 20,000 Union and Confederate soldiers were buried. Garfield said they “summed up and perfected, by one supreme act, the highest virtue of men and citizens.”
Red poppies are often worn on Memorial Day as a symbol of remembrance and to honor those who died in war.
Since the late 1950s, soldiers of the 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment, the oldest active-duty infantry unit in the Army, have placed small American flags at each of the over 260,000 gravestones in Arlington National Cemetery.
In 1951, the Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts of St. Louis began placing flags on the 150,000 graves at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery, a practice that continues to this day.
For those who have flags at home, remember this Memorial Day custom: The American flag should be hung at half-staff until noon, and then raised to the top of the staff."
~Lee Edwards of the Daily Signal