Hundreds Commemorate Confederate Memorial Day

These are the graves of the men who fought under the confederacy during the Civil War, risking their lives for each state to be able to govern itself.

These are the veterans hundreds of people, which included many of their descendants, honored Saturday afternoon.

"Well over a million Americans were casualties of that conflict. The South was totally destroyed in the process. Just as the ideals and virtues, families and fortunes were laid upon the altar of independence, once again in 1861, we must continue to offer ourselves in the perpetuation of the memory of our beloved Confederate ancestors," said Mississippi Sons of Confederate Veterans Ed Fuchess.

The Mississippi division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans along with the United Daughters of the Confederacy were among several groups sponsoring the memorial.

Some participants dressed in traditional Old South attire, which was fitting, because Confederate Memorial Day is a southern tradition.

"The history of Confederate Memorial Day was April 25, 1866 in Columbus, Mississippi when the ladies of the town went out and decorated the graves of the Confederate and the Union soldiers buried in the cemeteries, and that actually was the first, they called it decoration day, later changed to Memorial Day, but the United States Memorial Day got the idea from Confederate Memorial Day," said Rick Forte.

So the 140-year tradition of honoring the Confederate soldiers lives on here in South Mississippi, a tradition some hope will live forever.

"The truth should never die. It is our mission to keep the true history of 'our' side alive for our descendants," said historian Grady Howell.

The groups are working hard to restore the grounds of Beauvoir which were badly damaged during Katrina.

If you would like to help, send donations to:

The Beauvoir Restoration Committee
P.O. Box 987
Lexington, MS 39095