The First Armistice Day

Throngs in the streets of Philadelphia, November 11, 1918. Image from the National Archives


On the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month in 1918, an armistice was signed between the Allies of World War I and Germany at Compiègne, France. The Great War was over.

November 11 would become a national day of commemoration in many allied nations—in the United States it was celebrated as Armistice Day. As the years went by, it became clear that the "war to end war" didn't. After World War II, Armistice Day was renamed as Veterans Day.

Footage from Washington, D.C., November 11, 1918

And in San Francisco