Memorial Day, US Holiday
Memorial Day was a tradition that began during the Civil War to honor the fallen soldiers in the Civil War by decorating their grave sites. The Civil War was by far the most bloodiest war America has ever seen. An average of 620,000 men lost their lives in the line of duty. During the years following, the country struggled to come together as a whole again and repair itself from four years of death and destruction. As a way to start the healing process and honor those who had lost their lives, several southern states began to observe and publicize Memorial Day celebrations. Soon, Northern states followed with their own tradition, Decoration Day, and over the next 100 years Memorial Day was celebrated nationwide for all American soldiers who lost their lives in all wars unofficially until it was finally declared a federal holiday in 1971.
More than a century later, it seems that Memorial Day is more about taking advantage of the day off and partying then remembering the monumental sacrifices that our war hero’s went through. While the tradition of decorating graves is still alive and well, and many cities host parades and other official celebrations to mark the day, the holiday’s traditions and history seem to have gotten lost in the noise of BBQ’s and flocking to the stores for the latest sales. So please, take a moment and get off your phone and think about everything that these soldiers–human and animal– of the past present, and future have and will go through so we can continue doing what we love.
Take a look below to see several equine painting by some famous american war painters featuring horses in battle. For more information about the Civil War, this website has a lot of interesting facts.
“Passage of the Delaware” by Thomas Sully, 1819
TFS’ Third Year Celebrating Equine Art & Artists
Today marks the TFS’ third year of writing and showcasing the most exciting and fascinating equine art from around the world AND this will be #equinearthour’s second year interviewing equine artists! Thank you to all my readers, artists, and writers/magazines that have written about TFS and my art in their articles! It has been a pleasure to work with you. Thank you all so much, I appreciate all your time and effort to make this site as successful as it is!
“The Battle of Cowpens” painted by William Ranney in 1845
“Are You Hurt, Sir?” Gens. Gordon and Ewell Gettysburg, July 1, 1863 by Mort Künstler
Engraving depicting the death of Patrick Ferguson, from a painting by Alonzo Chappel
The Death of General Mercer at the Battle of Princeton, January 3, 1777 by John Trumbull
*Several of the paintings featured in this article do not have the names of the artists with them–if you know who has painted these, please drop me a line and I will include it in!