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Yellow Woven Ribbon History

Author: Flower Lady
June 11, 2012

Did you know that the history of the yellow woven ribbon reaches back way beyond a popular song in the 80’s?  For centuries, ribbons have been known to be a symbol of remembrance of loved ones.  A common phrase I have heard all my life is “the ties that bind” referring to family, and loved ones. 

Military families are very familiar with ribbons and significance.  Military medals have ribbons attached to them, the bar pins have ribbon decorations on them with deep meaning in the colors. 

Folklore tells many stories about ribbon in a lady’s hair, young Christian women in early settlers of the west would wear a ribbon in their hair if they were promised to another and the man had gone off to battle, or other purposes and it would inform everyone that she was not available to court.  In many occasions the man would tie the ribbon in her hair and she would wear it publicly until his return.  When people ask about the ribbon, she can tell others of whom she is remembering.

A song in the 80’s tells of a soldier returning from the Vietnam War and wondering if his wife would still be waiting for him.  He had been gone for years, and he sent her a letter that said if she was still waiting on him to tie a yellow ribbon around a tree and when the bus came through town, he could see it and know it was ok to come home. 

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