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Decoration Day

Mystic Seaport will pay tribute to fallen Civil War soldiers during the Museum’s annual Decoration Day ceremony on Monday, May 26.

Known today as Memorial Day, Decoration Day was formally instituted by the U.S. Government in 1868 as a day of national remembrance of those killed during the Civil War. Decoration Day observances included tending and decorating the graves of the fallen, church services, solemn processions, and community suppers.

Observances begin inside the Museum’s Fishtown Chapel with the “Roll of the Dead” at 10:30 a.m. Names of the fallen soldiers that lay in Elm Grove Cemetery, located on Greenmanville Ave. in Mystic, will be read and visitors can lay a remembrance in their honor. At 12 p.m., tolling steeple bells from the Greenmanville Church will invite visitors inside for a brief memorial service and hymns. A solemn procession follows, accompanied by fife and drum, to Middle Wharf for the playing of “Taps” and a wreath laying upon the Mystic River.

The day’s observances conclude with a gathering in the Seamen’s Friend Society Reading Room where visitors can meet the Museum’s roleplayers whose characters were impacted by the Civil War.