Armistice Day -- Veterans' Day - 2002

'For All He Was and What He Did, Remember Him Today'

By John M. Holman, Chaplain, American Legion Post 35

Atlantic News, Thursday, November 7, 2002

[The following article is courtesy of the Atlantic News]

Back on November 11, 1919, eighty-three years ago, Hampton honored her returned heroes from the War with a "Welcome Home" parade.

The Tuck Memorial Museum is proud to have two photographs in their files. One is the start of the parade itself in front of the Hampton Town Hall. The other is this photograph of the "Returned Heroes" who gathered for the occasion on the steps of the Town Hall with the names and location of each, courtesy of Jewell Sherburne Brown:

Back Row, l. to r.:

Everett Lawrence Blake, {unknown}, William Little, Myron Addison Blake, Oscar Blain Pevear, Harry Newton Elwell, Munroe Lamprey, Roland Noyes, 0tis Raymond Garland, Oscar Garland, Eugene Moaratty, Warren Godfrey, {unknown}, Andrew Russell Perkins, Andrew Roberts, Harold Noyes, Warren Perkins, G.A.R.

Front Row, l. to r..:

Commander Charles Clifford Gill (Parade Marshal), Capt. Sands (Supt., U.S.C.G.), Capt. Jasper Burton Myers, U.S.C.G., William Herlihy, Stanley Hussey, Leslie (Bus) W. Holmes, Rupert Lindsey, Marvin F. Young, Forrest Mason, Benjamin Sturgis, Clyde Delancy, Oscar Burwell Steward, Estow Hobbs, Myron Jewell Norton, Frederick J. Riley, Walter Tarlton, Percy Brown, U. S. Seavey, George O. Philbrick, Wallace Mullin, Charles Huckins, Thomas Searles.

The "Programme of Exercises" commenced at 11 a.m. with a reception to the men in uniform in the lower Town Hall. All citizens were invited to gather and extend a royal welcome to our Returned Boys in Service.

At 11:30 am., a banquet for boys in service and invited guests was held in the Congregational Church Chapel with brief war reminiscences and music. The parade began at 1 p.m. with a procession of floats representing the Historical Society and local events and decorated automobiles, buggys and wagons.

The unveiling of the memorial tablets at the Lane Memorial Library began at 2:30 p.m. with Rev. Edgar Warren, chairman of the Tablet committee, in charge. Miss Lorraine Lindsey accomplished the unveiling. There were also brief addresses and music.

The "Welcome Home" exercises got underway at 3 p.m. in the Town Hall with music by the band. The chorus singing was led by Chaplain Roundtree and the Hampton Academy Glee Club. The Hon. Charles W. Tobey of Manchester and Rev. Frank K. Stratton of Melrose, Mass., gave the keynote addresses. Following the addresses, brief tales of war experiences by boys in uniform were given, followed by short addresses by guests present. The exercises closed at 5 p.m.

There was a concert and dance beginning at 8 p.m. in the Town Hall with music by an 8-piece orchestra.

The banquet menu consisted of roast stuffed chicken with giblet sauce, mashed potatoes, boiled onions, hubbard squash, celery, lobster salad, hot rolls, cranberry sauce, harlequin ice cream, assorted cakes and coffee.

Music was provided by the Atlantic Corporation Band of twenty-two pieces under the direction of Nelson T. Bernier, leader.

Prizes of $15, $10 and $5 were offered for the best three floats. Prizes of the same amounts were offered for the three best decorated automobiles, and the three best decorated private dwellings along the line of the parade. The parade formed on Academy Avenue and proceeded to Winnacunnet Road to East End School House (junction of Locke Road and Winnacunnet Road), then back to DeLancey's Corner (corner of Mill and Winnacunnet Road), through to High Street, to Lafayette Road, then to Whittier's Corner (Galley Hatch) to the Lane Library where the parade was disbanded.

In 1919, it was just one year before — on November 11, 1918 — that the First World War ended. At 11 a.m. of that day, which was the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, that all firing ceased, after the signing of the Armistice. In 1954, the name of Armistice Day was changed to Veterans' Day and in 1978, Congress restored the observance to its traditional date of November 11. Perhaps in the foreseeable future, Memorial Day can be restored to May 30, a significant date in United States history.