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Memorial Day Services

Over ninety veterans of the American armed forces are buried in the Farnam Cemetery. They are honored each year by American Legion Post #288 during Memorial Day services held at the cemetery. A monument also stands in their honor at the foot of the flagpole at the south end of the cemetery.

The services are traditionally held in the morning and include the reading of In Flanders Fields and The Gettysburg Address, as well as, a Rifle Salute and the playing of Taps.

Memorial Day Addresses:

May 26, 2008 - Remembering Gene Widick
May 28, 2007 - Duty, Honor, Country
May 29, 2006 - Lest We Forget

In Flanders Fields

by John McCrae
May 2, 1915

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

The story of the writing

The Gettysburg Address

Delivered by Abraham Lincoln
November 19, 1863

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation or any nation so conceived and so dedicated can long endure. We are met on a great battlefield of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field as a final resting-place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this. But in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead who struggled here have consecrated it far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living rather to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us--that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion--that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain, that this nation under God shall have a new birth of freedom, and that government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth.

Library of Congress

Works of Abraham Lincoln


From The Farnam Echo 23(28):1, Thursday, 20 May 1926

Memorial Services To Be Held Monday May 31

Farnam will fittingly observe Decoration Day, on Monday May 31.

The following program will be given at the hall, beginning at 1:30 p.m. After the program the crowd will March to the Cemetery where the Salute shot will be fired and the final prayers prayed. The flowers will be placed upon the graves by flower girls in charge of Florence Velte.

Selection.............By Orchestra
America...............by Audience
Invocation............by Rev. Seick
Duet..................Faye Hudson, Hazel Goesch
Gettysburg Address....Max McNickle
Song..................Male Quartette
Address...............Rev. Merrill Carman
Star Spangled Banner..Audience
Benediction...........Rev. Owings

Memorial Day

General John A. (Black Jack) Logan, at the time Commander-in-chief of the Grand Army of the Republic, issued an order to that body, in 1868, that May 30th, would be set aside each year for the purpose of decorating the graves of those who were killed in the Civil War. All but nine States in the Union have made this day a legal holiday which is observed with parades and appropriate services, not only in honor of those who fell in the Civil war, but also, of the World War and other conflicts.

Many of us are prone to forget the significance of the Day and regard it simply as a holiday to be spent for our own selfish pleasure. How sad it is that we do not render those heroes, still living, the love and homage of the little child in the picture, and to the dead, the sacred memory such homage would inspire.

Let us, at least, on this approaching Memorial Day, pay the tribute of a salute, not alone to the flag, but to the passing "buddies" of the World War and their forefathers, the feeble old "boys" in blue, and in the words of S. M. Kneil—

Let little hands bring blossoms sweet,
To brave men lying low,
Let little hearts to soldiers dead
Their love and honor show.
We’ll love the flag they loved so well,
The dear old banner bright,
We’ll love the land for which they fell,
With soul, and strength and might.
—Ex.


From The Farnam Echo 54(36):1, Thursday, 9 May 1935

Poppy Day to be Observed Here Saturday, May 25th

Poppy Day, will be observed in Farnam, on May 25, when little red poppies will be distributed on the streets, and worn in honor of the World War dead. The poppies distributed by the local Legion were made in the Veteran’s hospital at Lincoln by disabled veterans, which is a means of providing employment for them, to support themselves and their families. In exchange for the poppies each person is asked to contribute for the welfare of the veterans.


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