Veterans Day in Washington in 2019

  How long until Veterans Day?
This holiday is today!
  Dates of Veterans Day in Washington
2021 Thu, Nov 11Regional Holiday
2020 Wed, Nov 11Regional Holiday
2019 Mon, Nov 11Regional Holiday
2018 Mon, Nov 12Regional Holiday
2017 Fri, Nov 10Regional Holiday
  Summary
Observed on November 11th to recall the end of World War I on that date in 1918
  Veterans Day in other countries
Veterans Day internationally
Related holidays

When is Veterans Day?

Veterans Day is a federal holiday and a state holiday in all states with the exception of Wisconsin.

The federal holiday is observed on November 12th or the weekday closest to November 12th, if November 12th falls on a weekend.

In most states, it is observed on the weekday nearest to November 11th.

Local government, schools and businesses not required to follow closure policies made by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management are free to decide whether to observe Veterans Day as a holiday. Most will remain open.

The New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq remain open on this federal holiday.

Overall Veterans Day is a paid holiday for only 19% of American workers, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Just 11% of private-sector workers get the day off. 

History of Veterans Day

The holiday honours all veterans of the United States armed forces.

A traditional observation is a moment of silence at 11 AM remembering those who fought for peace. (Commemorates the cease-fire in the 1918 armistice which was scheduled for "the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month.")

Did you know?

The last soldier killed in action in World War I is generally acknowledged to be an American called Henry Gunther from Baltimore. He was killed 60 seconds before the armistice came into force while charging German troops who knew that the Armistice was imminent. It was said that Gunther had been despondent over a recent reduction in rank and was trying to redeem his reputation.

The day of recognition for Veterans of the Great War (World War I) on this date was first proclaimed by President Wilson on November 11, 1919. In May 1938, the 11th of November in each year was declared a legal holiday and was known as 'Armistice Day'.

Did you know?

The war which claimed the most American lives was the Civil war, with over 618,000 deaths, compared to 416,000 in World War II.

In 1953, a shoe store owner named Al King started a campaign that the day should celebrate all veterans, not just those who served in World War 1, suggesting it should be renamed 'All' Veterans Day.

Al's idea was taken up by his local Chamber of Commerce and then by a local congressman, who helped push a bill for the holiday through Congress. President Eisenhower signed it into law and in May 1954, Congress amended the law and officially replaced 'Armistice' with 'Veterans'.

In 1968, the Uniform Monday Holiday Act initially applied to Veterans Day as well, stipulating that the federal holiday should be observed on the fourth Monday of October. However, veterans groups opposed the change and most states kept their Veterans Day commemorations on November 11th. In 1975, President Gerald Ford signed a law that moved the holiday back to November 11th.

How is Veterans Day observed?

An annual Veterans Day parade takes place on 5th Avenue in Manhattan with over 500,000 attendees.

Across the country, many restaurants and fast-food chains offer free meals to veterans.

Veterans Day Quiz

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Three facts about Veterans Day

While the holiday is often written or printed as Veteran's Day or Veterans' Day in calendars and advertisements, the United States government has declared that the attributive case is the official spelling.

Veterans Day was first celebrated as Armistice Day on Nov. 11, 1919, just one year after the end of World War I. Congress passed legislation in 1926 for the day to become an annual observance. It became known as a national holiday in 1938

There were 19.6 million veteran in the US in 2018; 1.7 million of these were female veterans.

More facts about Veterans Day

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