NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Local News

November 10, 2012

For the love of God and country

“Give everyone what you owe him: … if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor” (Romans 13, NIV)

Tomorrow is Veterans Day. It is a day of remembrance of the veterans who have given their lives for their country.

There is a lengthy history of how the name became Veterans Day. The name originally for this day of remembrance was known as Armistice Day. The name came about because our country had entered what we know as the First World War in April 6, 1917, and in the years of this war we lost 116,516 fighting men. We had entered the war to help our Allies against Germany. Germany had lost so many of its fighting forces that the German government had made an appeal to President Woodrow Wilson for an armistice on Oct. 4, 1918. President Wilson said he wanted Kaiser Wilhelm II to abdicate his throne and that Germany replace their government with a democracy. Our American commander in France, Gen. John J. Pershing, wanted to totally destroy the German army, but our Allies were in favor of an armistice and President Wilson concurred. President Wilson put together 14 points for the armistice to take place.

Finally, the Kaiser abdicated his throne and fled from Germany on Nov. 9, 1918. The next day the new German government accepted the terms and on Nov. 11, 1918, in the Forest of Compiegne the representatives of the Allies and the Germans signed the armistice that would become effective at 11 a.m. that same day. In the United States the news of the German surrender arrived at 3 a.m. There was a great outburst of joy with factory horns blaring, sirens wailing, people were marching in the streets arm in arm, some crying and others laughing. In some of the large cities there was some rioting for joy. The biggest war to date in history was ended; the celebration was a big one.

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