FORTY-FOURTH ANNUAL ENCAMPMENT
HEADQUARTERS GRAND ARMY OF THE REPUBLIC
Minneapolis, Minn., April 15, 1910
General Orders No. 4.
Forty-two years of reverent compliance with the Order issued by Comrade John A. Logan in 1868, while Commander-in-Chief of the Grand Army of the Republic, has made the annual observance of Memorial Day the expression of a Nation’s tribute of respect to its deathless dead. This observance will continue not only as long as the Grand Army of the Republic survives, but as long as our people appreciate the value of the services of the men who fought so valiantly and sacrificed so much to save the Nation.
Let us therefore prepare for the proper observance of Monday, May 30th, 1910, as Memorial Day. Department and Post Commanders will issue the necessary Orders. The work should be so well and thoroughly done that no Comrade’s grave would be missed, but wreaths and garlands should be placed upon every mound that marks the last resting place of our departed and heroic dead. These men died that the Nation might live. We honor ourselves when we pay tribute to their memory.
Comrades, while remembering our dead, let us not forget the living. I urge you if possible to the exercise of the greatest charity toward those who are suffering from disease or wounds, and toward all those who by reason of the infirmities of age are not able to support themselves and those dependent upon them. Others may, but we should never forget sacrifices and brave deeds.
It is recommended that wherever the grave of an Ex-Confederate soldier is found that flowers be placed thereon, as a tribute to the bravery of the man, who fought on the other side, remembering that he, too, was an American soldier. We were once enemies but now friends. The long dark night is over;-at last we are united people. Out of the darkness comes no echo of discord between brothers, no noise, no strife, no bloodshed, but universal fellowship lights the lamp to guide the feet of our young Republic.
Attendance upon Divine Service on the Sunday proceeding Memorial Day is now a part of the regular exercises. Every post, accompanied by allied Organizations, should attend such service in a body.
Patriotic Sessions in the Public Schools should be held and Comrades detailed to assist the teachers in this most important and patriotic work, on the Friday proceeding Memorial Day.
The address of President Lincoln at Gettysburg should be read at all Memorial Day exercises.
The Woman’s Relief Corps, the Ladies of the G. A. R., the Sons and Daughters of Veterans, and all other allied Organizations, should be invited to participate with Posts on Memorial Day.
Discountenance all games of sport, and all kinds of profanation of the day, and let us all unitedly strive to make this Memorial Day universally observed and one long to be remembered.