Veterans Day 2016: A Brief History of an Important American Holiday

Veterans Day, originally named Armistice Day, began as an American holiday to commemorate the end of the first World War, which took place November 11, 1918. Although celebrated annually in the years following, Armistice day didn't actually become a legal federal holiday until 1938, when it was officially dedicated "to the cause of world peace."

In 1954, after the turmoil of both World War II and the Korean War, Congress, at the urging of veterans service organizations, amended the Act of 1938 by replacing the word "Armistice" with "Veterans." Therefor, in June 1954, November 11th officially became a day to honor American veterans of all wars and conflicts.

Later, in 1968, with the passing of the Uniforms Holiday Bill (which ensured three-day weekends for federal employees by celebrating four national holidays on Mondays) Veterans Day was moved to the fourth Monday of October. The first Veterans Day under the new law was observed with "much confusion" on October 25, 1971 -- but certain states that opposed this decision continued to celebrate the holiday on November 11th instead.

Then on September 20, 1975, President Ford signed a law returning the annual observance of Veterans Day to its original date beginning in 1978. Each year since then, this holiday has been observed on November 11th.

In honoring all of our veterans this weekend, we'd like to send special thanks to our Chelsea Clock employees (past and present) who served our country so selflessly:

Chelsea Clock Company Military Veterans

Max Fish (U.S. Army, WWI)

Robert Barnett (U.S. Navy, WWI)

George King (U.S. Navy, WWI)

Russell Gaskill (U.S. Army, WWII)

Nicholas Siraco (U.S. Army, WWII)

Jack Starr (U.S. Army, WWII)

Carroll Reardon (U.S. Army, WWII)

Raymond Hill (U.S. Army, WWII)

Frank Trahey (U.S. Army, WWII)

John Durante (U.S. Army, WWII)

Joseph D’Avella (U.S. Army, WWII)

Nicholas Maffeo (U.S. Army, WWII)

Bruce Jay (U.S. Army, WWII)

John Miggins (U.S. Army, WWII)

Steve Celona (U.S. Army, WWII)

Samuel Gangi (U.S. Army, WWII)

Albert Brown (U.S. Army, WWII)

Charles Perricotti (U.S. Army, WWII)

John Nash (U.S. Army, WWII)

Nurses Harotunian (U.S. Navy, WWII)

Steven Celona (U.S. Navy, WWII)

James Lucey (U.S. Navy, WWII)

Howard Stonehouse (U.S. Navy, WWII)

Donald Pryor (U.S. Air Force, WWII)

James Duvally (U.S. Air Force, WWII)

Ray Milliken (U.S. Army, Korean War)

Henry Barasso (U.S. Army, Korean War)

Joseph Powers (U.S. Army, Korean War)

Lyle Packard (U.S. Army, Korean War)

Benjamin Sordillo (U.S. Army, Korean War)

Robert Sterling (U.S. Army, Korean War)

John McCarthy (U.S. Army, Korean War)

Kenneth Felton (U.S. Army, Vietnam)

Vincent Piasecki (U.S. Army, Vietnam)

Robert Zagarella (U.S. Army, Vietnam)

Bruce Mauch (U.S. Army, Vietnam)

Thomas Eaton (U.S. Army, Vietnam)

Leo Pizzano Jr., killed in the line of duty (U.S. Army, Vietnam)

John Noseworthy, killed in the line of Duty (U.S. Marine Corps, Vietnam)

Frank DiFrancesco (U.S. Army, Desert Storm)

Robert Seronick (U.S. Army, Desert Storm)

Special thanks to veteran John McCarthy for compiling this list. Screen Shot 2016-11-10 at 10.48.37 AM