You don’t hear the phrase Decoration Day much anymore, even in the South, but it was the original name for Memorial Day. Still, there is a long and ongoing tradition in the South to tend and decorate the graves of Civil War casualties and veterans. Does that mean there are those who think the Civil War was a just and noble cause? There are still some that do. For others this is a way to respect their ancestors and honor those that died in a war unlike any ever fought by the USA, one that took place in our own back yard. No one should forget the evil of slavery, but there is a pull we all have to pay our respects to the dead, especially those who died in battle. We all hope that years from now someone will honor us, remembering what was good and forgiving what was not.
Cassville Cemetery - Cassville, Georgia
In the South this time of year, rural communities gather to clean and decorate their local cemeteries. It’s a tradition called “Decoration Day,” and not surprisingly, it’s thought to be the inspiration for Memorial Day. NPR’s Paul Brown reports.