Confederate Memorial Day in South Carolina in 2025

Confederate Memorial Day in South Carolina in 2025
The surrender of General Lee to General Grant at Appomattox Court House, Virginia, 9 April 1865. Reproduction of a painting by Thomas Nast Image via Granger Historical Picture Archive
  How long until Confederate Memorial Day?
Confederate Memorial Day
  Dates of Confederate Memorial Day in South Carolina
2025 Fri, May 9Government Holiday
2024 Fri, May 10Government Holiday
2023 Wed, May 10Government Holiday
2022 Tue, May 10Government Holiday
2021 Mon, May 10Government Holiday

Honors the confederate soldiers who died in the American Civil War

What is Confederate Memorial Day?

Confederate Memorial Day is observed as a State Holiday in several US states on different days.

Despite the difference in what event the different dates represent, the day is intended to honour those who lost their lives in the American Civil War.

History of Confederate Memorial Day

The American Civil War was fought in the United States from April 1861 to 1865.

On April 26th 1865 Confederate General Joseph E. Johnston agreed to surrender to General William T. Sherman at Durham Station, North Carolina.

The agreement disbanded all active Confederate forces in North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida, totalling 89,270 soldiers, as the largest group to surrender during the Civil War.

This effectively marked the end of the American Civil War, in which around 290,000 Confederate troops had lost their lives.

The custom of a memorial day can be traced back to the year after the war, when in the spring of 1866 the Ladies Memorial Association of Columbus, Georgia, passed a resolution to set aside one day annually to memorialize the Confederate war dead.

Mary Ann Williams, the association secretary, was directed to pen a letter inviting ladies associations in every former Confederate state to join them in the observance. Their invitation was written in March 1866 and sent to all of the principal cities in the former Confederacy. The actual date for the holiday was selected by Elizabeth Rutherford Ellis. She chose April 26th, the first anniversary of Confederate General Johnston's surrender at Bennett Place. 

The first official celebration of Confederate Memorial Day as a public holiday was after a proclamation by the state legislature of Georgia in 1874. The lack of clarity on when to observe the holiday meant that by 1916, it was being celebrated by different states on various dates. Ten states were celebrating on June 3rd, the birthday of Confederate President Jefferson Davis. Other states chose late April dates, or May 10th, which was the date when Davis was captured near Irwinville, Georgia .

South Carolina celebrates Confederate Memorial Day on the weekday nearest May 10, marking the day Confederate Lt. General Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson died from pneumonia in 1863. The day became official after a 2000 bill passed, adding both Confederate Memorial Day and Martin Luther King Jr. Day to the list of official holidays. All non-essential state employees will have the day off and state government offices will close.

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