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Saturday, May 26, 2007

ORIGINS OF A SPECIAL MEMORIAL DAY TRADITION

A while ago, Phyllis Hansen, historian and member of the Board of Directors of Campo de Cahuenga, discovered an old time radio script, featuring an interview with the California artist Orpha Klinker (see this blog May 4, 2007). Ms. Klinker was not only a widely known artist and lover of San Fernando Valley history, but was also a friend of Mrs. Armitage Forbes the woman who saved many California missions and adobes - and the El Camino Real with now famous bells.
The following is an excerpt from that radio interview, and something to consider this Memorial Day.

KLINKER: Yes it was in 1902 that she began her crusade for El Camino Real. But even before that, back in 1900, she had done something the whole nation can be grateful for.
MARY: What was that?
KLINKER: The establishment of a hallowed and beautiful tradition... her idea to have school children living in coastal cities toss wreaths into the ocean on Memorial Day to honor Naval Heroes lost at sea. The idea became so popular that in a few years our Navy asked to be allowed to take it over as a traditional ceremony each Memorial Day.

Thanks Phyllis for sharing this with our Museum Community.

The San Fernando Valley deserves a great Museum of history and culture.

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