World War One was a watershed in American history. The United States' decision to join the battle in 1917 "to make the world safe for democracy" proved pivotal in securing allied victory — a victory that would usher in the American Century.
In the war's aftermath, individuals, towns, cities, counties, and states all felt compelled to mark the war, as did colleges, businesses, clubs, associations, veterans groups, and houses of worship. Thousands of memorials—from simple honor rolls, to Doughboy sculptures, to grandiose architectural ensembles—were erected throughout the US in the 1920s and 1930s, blanketing the American landscape.
Each of these memorials, regardless of size or expense, has a story. But sadly, as we enter the war's centennial period, these memorials and their very purpose—to honor in perpetuity the more than four million Americans who served in the war and the more than 116,000 who were killed—have largely been forgotten. And while many memorials are carefully tended, others have fallen into disrepair through neglect, vandalism, or theft. Some have been destroyed. Watch this CBS news video on the plight of these monuments.
The extant memorials are our most salient material links in the US to the war. They afford a vital window onto the conflict, its participants, and those determined to remember them. Rediscovering the memorials and the stories they tell will contribute to their physical and cultural rehabilitation—a fitting commemoration of the war and the sacrifices it entailed.
We are building a US WW1 Memorial register through a program called the Memorials Hunters Club. If you locate a memorial that is not on the map we invite you to upload your treasure to be permanently archived in the national register. You can include your choice of your real name, nickname or team name as the explorers who added that memorial to the register. We even have room for a selfie! Check the map, and if you don't see the your memorial CLICK THE LINK TO ADD IT.
This Memorial Plaque is mounted to the outside West wall of the Tobin Center and is accompanied by plaques also dedicated to San Antonio soldiers who Made the Supreme Sacrifice in the Spanish American War and Pearl Harbor, December 7, 1941
Doughboy carrying rifle with arm raised. The memorial is in front of the Cherry County NE Courthouse.
North Dakota World War I Monuments and Memorials Dedicated between 1918 and 1941
North Dakotans remembered those who served in World War I by erecting monuments and memorials all over the state. The monuments and memorials range from bronze tablets which honored local men and women who served, to the Liberty Memorial Building (1925) on the State Capitol grounds in Bismarck, which is a memorial to all North Dakota World War I veterans.
It appears that a monument erected in Minot on May 30, 1918 is the first permanent monument dedicated to local war dead in the United States. This special World War I monument, located in Minot’s Rosehill Cemetery, was erected by the Minot Girls Military Squad. http://www.minotdailynews.com/news/local-news/2017/02/monumental-memorial/
Two bronze “doughboy” monuments are located in North Dakota. One is located in the Riverview Cemetery, Williston and the other on the Richland County Court House Lawn in Wahpeton. Both were erected in 1927. Other organizations, such as the North Dakota War Mothers also dedicated monuments to their sons and daughters who had served in World War I.
North Dakotans also dedicated parks, such as the Lamoure County Memorial Park (1921), many community centers, and five county court houses as memorials. The five counties that built World War I memorial courthouses are Emmons (1934), Hettinger (1936), Renville (1936), Stark (1937) and Ward (1930). The author has worked with the State Historical Society of North Dakota to locate and research these monuments and memorials across the state. As of July 2017, over forty World War I monuments and memorials erected between 1918 and 1941 have been identified. http://history.nd.gov/hp/WWImemorials.html If you know of a monument or memorial constructed between these dates that is not on the attached list, please contact the State Historical Society of North Dakota at 701-328-2089.
The Barre World War I Monument has a 6' high bronze figure of a Doughboy, standing on a 6' by 5' by 3.5' rock. The helmeted soldier is leaning slightly forward with his rifle held in front of him with both hands. The sculpture was created by Joseph P. Pollia and dedicated in 1929.
A bronze plaque on the back of the base is inscribed:
BY THE TOWN OF
IN HONOR AND MEMORY OF
THOSE WHO SERVED
IN THE WORLD WAR.
A bronze plaque on the front of the base is inscribed:
WORLD WAR HONOR ROLL
DIED IN SERVICE
* FREDRICK ADDY
* JOSEPH BENTLEY
* EDWIN BOWEN
* J. ALEXANDER BROWN
* ROBERT J. CLAPP
* JOHN CRANSTON
* SALVATORE DANNOLFI
* SAMUEL DAUNT
* ALLAN F. MARSH
* JOHN R. MOORE
* MICHELE ROSSELLI
* JOSEPH WISPALIS
* ANTONIO ZANCHI
Followed by a five column list of 198 names of those who served.
On the grounds of the state capitol is a stone sculpture by an unknown artist, commemorating the members of the 81st Division, which saw action in WWI. It was dedicated on October 10, 1941.
On a large boulder are carved two figures of WWI soldiers. A helmeted one with a pistol stands, holding a helmet-less wounded one in his arms. Virgo Brandt-Erichsen sculpted this in 1928-30, using local veterans L.t. Joseph D. Donahue and Sgt. David H. Harling for his models. It was dedicated on November 11, 1930.
Erichsen built the memorial out of a stone taken from Jaffrey. The massive 40 ton stone was moved to East Jaffrey over a six week period. Mr. Erichsen began construction of the memorial which took him almost two years.
The memorial plaque at the base lists the 104 Jaffrey men who served in the War. The dedication, on Armistice Day, was attended by hundreds from throughout New England. In 1949, Brandt-Erichsen created the Gold Star Mothers Memorial at the opposite end of the common which names the nine Jaffrey men who died during World War II. Also in the common - officially called Memorial Park - is the town Bandstand. This is the third one at this site. It had been removed some years ago but was returned and restored in 1986. It hosts summer concerts and other events during the year.
A full-length concrete WWI soldier stands with both hands on his rifle, atop a truncated stone base. It was sculpted by Claude Fisher and erected in 1936 to honor local WWI veterans.
April 6, 1917-November 11, 1918
New plaque as a result of deteriorated condition of original and addition names added
ERECTED BY THE CITIZENS OF THE TOWN OF SHAWANGUNK TO COMMEMORATE THE PATRIOTIC SERVICES OF THE MEN IN THE WORLD WAR 1917-1918
Addition names have been added after initial creation of plaque
This eight and a half foot tall bronze sculpture depicts two WWI figures, a soldier and a sailor. They are in uniform, and the soldier is slightly in front of the sailor. It was sculpted by Sally James Farnham (1876-1943) and dedicated on July 16, 1927, to honor veterans of WWI.
This is a six foot tall bronze statue of a winged female Victory, walking forward holding the remains of a sword. On a granite pedestal are plaques depicting war scenes involving Infantry and Engineers. Air Force and Pilots, Artillery and Signal Corps, and Navy and Marines. It was dedicated on May 30, 1921, as a tribute to the citizens of Lorain who served in WWI. The rest of the sword and an olive branch which had been held by the figure were lost in a 1924 tornado. They were replaced in 1948 by August Nabakowski, and late in 1948 or early in 1949, they were stolen.
Forest Lawn Museum, 1712 S. Glendale Ave., Glendale, CA 91205: Daily dawn dusk. Free.
This statue sculpted by Theo A.R. Kitson depicts a WWI infantryman looking straight ahead. It is approximately nine feet tall.
Stained Glass Window crafted by Tiffany & Co. Dedicated in 1919 with a large celebration, a parade, and a speech by NY Governor, Charles S. Whitman. Names include Malcolm L. Tuthill, one of the first men to receive a Purple Heart, whose helmet, tunic, and boots are on display at the National Purple Heart Museum.
An unknown sculptor fashioned this marble sculpture of a WWI infantryman holding the barrel of his rifle with both hands in front of himself. He wears a wide-brimmed hat, hobnail boots and wrap leggings, and he carries a knapsack over his shoulder. The base of field and river stones has a marble panel inscribed in honor of the seven local men who died in WWI, and all from Polk County who served in it.
Inscription: A.E.F. World War Veterans 1917-1919 (no local servicemen died in combat during WW1)
The four sides of the monument are inscribed with an acknowledgement and names of those who died in conflict from the Civil War through Afghanistan.
This is a life-size bronze statue of a WWI infantryman, charging forward with a rifle in his left hand and a grenade in his right. Beneath is a red Medina sandstone base, in which is scaled a copper box containing veterans association minutes, a full roster of the 74th Regiment, coins of the war period, and a program from the statue's dedication. It was sculpted by John Paulding and dedicated on May 18, 1929, in honor of the members of the 74th who served, and the 43 who died in service.
A sculpture in which six youthful figures appear to be emerging from a swirling globe-shaped mass. The figures are nude and are positioned on a diagonal encircling the globe. Atop the globe is a standing male nude with wings. His proper left arm is stretched out to the side. His proper right arm is stretched up above his head and he holds a branch in his proper right hand. He wears a wreath on his head and is sleek and youthful. The sculpture is in the center of a polygonal concrete basin with spiral ridges converging in the center. Two steps lead from the concrete and brick plaza to the basin.
Inscription: (On basin, on plaque:) In memoriam/Dedicated to the citizens of Florida/Who made the supreme sacrifice in the World War/1914-1918 (On another plaque:) Hereon reposes an/Indelible record of the/Twelve hundred and twenty/Names of those to whom/This memorial/Was reverently dedicated/On Christmas Day 1924 (On another plaque:) Completed and conveyed/To the city of Jacksonville, Florida/AD 1924 (On another plaque:) Erected in gratitude/By the citizens of Duval County, Florida
(According to waymarking.com, the plaque regarding dedication on Christmas Day has been replaced with one that reads: Spiritualized Life/Symbolized by the winged figure of youth/Rises triumphant from the swirl of war's chaos which engulfs humanity/and faces the future courageously)
This copper figure of a WWI infantryman carrying a rifle and a grenade appears to be advancing through No Man's land. It was sculpted by E.M. Viquesney and dedicated in 1926. The statue is removed from its granite base at the end of each October to be cleaned and repainted, and is returned to the site at the church at the end of the following May.
This nine foot tall sculpture was created by Bruce Wilder Saville (1893 - 1938), depicting a WWI soldier returning home from victory. He holds his rifle and a German soldier's helmet. It was dedicated on April 6, 1926, and was part of the War Memorial Wing of the old State Museum on the Ohio State University campus. It was moved in August of 1970 to the top of the dome of the Ohio Historical Center, and in 1991 was moved to the center's entrance.