Memorial Day historical gallery

Friday, May 27, 2011
Southeast Missourian archive

Memorial Day was originally called Decoration Day. The holiday grew out of the tradition of decorating the graves of the Civil War dead. In Cape Girardeau, early observances included musical programs and patriotic speeches conducted in the shade of the Courthouse Park. Those in attendance would then parade to Old Lorimier Cemetery, where veterans' graves would be cleaned and decorated with flowers and flags.