Veterans Day is observed on Nov. 11 each year.
The federal holiday is a day when American civilians pay their respects and thank the millions of veterans who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces.
In honor of the 68th anniversary of Veterans Day, here are eight number-based facts about the holiday.
VETERANS DAY AND ITS HISTORY: 6 KEY FACTS TO KNOW
1919 – Before there was a Veterans Day, there was an Armistice Day.
President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed November 11 as the first commemoration of Armistice Day in 1919, according to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
The date of Armistice Day reportedly referenced the day World War I ended, which happened with the signing of an armistice on the Western Front on Nov. 11, 1918, at 11 a.m.
On the first Armistice Day, Wilson proclaimed, “To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations.”
VETERANS DAY IS NOT ALWAYS EASY FOR OUR HEROES — HERE’S WHAT TO SAY AND DO
1954 – Armistice Day was changed to Veterans Day by President Dwight Eisenhower in 1954, according to the Library of Congress.
The switch to Veterans Day was reportedly done to honor veterans of all U.S. wars.
VETERANS DAY: 5 THINGS TO DO AND SAY TO HONOR AMERICA’S HEROES
1 of 11 – Veterans Day is one of the 11 federal holidays recognized by the U.S. government.
It’s the ninth federal holiday observed in a calendar year, according to a list published by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Office of Human Resources Management.
18.5 million veterans – In 2021, the national veteran population was 18.5 million, according to an “Employment Situation of Veterans” report published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
1.3 million active-duty – Some 1.3 million active-duty service members make up the U.S. Armed Forces (Army, Navy, Marine Corps and Air Force), according to the U.S. Department of Defense’s Federal Register, an official journal of the federal government.
VETERANS DAY VS MEMORIAL DAY: WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE?
At the time of publication, the agency is also backed by 600,000 civilian employees, which makes the Department of Defense one of the nation’s largest employers.
825K in National Guard and Reserve – The Department of Defense has 825,000 National Guard and Reserve service members who can be called on in case of emergency.
75 years of awards – The National Veterans Day Award was started in 1954 to honor veterans who make great contributions to veteran organizations, according to National Today, an online holiday calendar.
Two years later, the National Veterans Day organization was established, which hosts annual award dinners for outstanding veterans.
Awardees have been honored at the National Veterans Day Award Dinner in Birmingham, Alabama, for 75 years, according to nationalveteransday.org.
CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP
5 wars – While Veterans Day pays tribute to veterans of all wars, the Veterans Day National Parade of Heroes in Washington, D.C., hosts a special ceremony that honors veterans from World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, the Gulf War and the War on Terror.