Birthplace of Memorial Day

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Birthplace of Memorial Day in Illinois

Carbondale, Illinois’ claim-to-fame is being the birthplace of Memorial Day, the first of which was observed on April 29, 1866.

On that inaugural Memorial Day, 219 Civil War veterans marched through Carbondale in memory of the fallen soldiers and ended at Woodlawn Cemetery, where Union hero Gen. John A. Logan delivered a speech. It was recognized as the first organized, community-wide Memorial Day observance.

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