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.
"Dedicated to the Residents of Central Valley who Gave Their Services to the the Cause of Humanity"
Century Tower is one of the most identifiable features of the University of Florida campus. The dream of building a tower began in 1953, when alumni sought funds to construct a monument in memory of students killed in World War I and World War II. The tower also commemorates the 100th anniversary of the founding of the University of Florida in 1853. The fund drive resulted in the construction of the 157-foot-tall tower, completed in 1956.
This memorial is dedicated to those from Cerro Gordo Co IA who fought in World War One and gave their lives. This memorial is at the NE corner of the Cerro Gordo CO Courthouse in Mason City IA
"An American Legend"
"Charles Young was the third black graduate of the United States Military Academy, class of 1889. Young enjoyed a diverse military career as a lieutenant of a cavalry troop squadron, and regimental commander, acting superintendent of a national park, military attaché to Haiti and Liberia, professor at Wilberforce University and military advisor to the President of Liberia.
Colonel Young was a dedicated soldier and statesman. Young is an American legend, a model for youth and adults of all races to emulate. As a 'Buffalo Soldier' he was present on the early westward frontier. At Fort Huachuca, Major Young commanded the 2nd squadron cavalry regiment in the Punitive Expedition against Pancho Villa in Mexico, served in the Spanish American War, and the Philippine Insurrection. On June 22, 1917 Charles Young became the first African American to reach the rank of Colonel.
Young died and was buried in Lagos, Nigeria in 1922 while serving as Colonel in World War One. A year later his remains were returned to the United States and buried with full honors at Arlington National Cemetery. On June 1, 1923 many Americans bade farewell to a distinguished soldier and statesman. " (Robert Ewell Green in Black Courage)
"The life of Charles Young was a triumph of tragedy. No one ever knew the truth about the Hell he went through at West Point. He seldom even mentioned it. The pain was too great. Few knew what faced him always in his army life. It was not enough for him to do well - he must always do better: and so much and so conspicuously better as to disarm the scoundrels that ever trailed him. He lived in the army surrounded by insult and intrigue and yet set his teeth and kept his soul serene and triumphed.
He was one of the few men I know who literally turned the other cheek with Jesus Christ. When officers of inferior rank refused to salute a black man, he saluted them. Seldom did he lose his temper, seldom complain.
Steadily, unswervingly he did his duty. And Duty to him as to few modern men, was spelled in capitals.
Now he is dead. But the heart of the Great Black Race, the Ancient of Days - the Undying and Eternal - rises and salutes his shining memory: Well done! Charles Young, Soldiers and Man and unswerving Friend." (W.E.B. DuBois in The Crisis, February 1992)
"AS soon as the school year was over, I rode on horseback from Wilberforce to Washingotn, walking on foot fifteen minutes in each hour, the distance of 497 miles to show, if possible, my physical fitness for command of troops. I there offered my services gladly at he risk of life, which has no value to me if I cannot give it for the great ends for which the United States is striving." (Colonel Charles Young, age 53, Historic Horseback Ride 1918)
Memorial trees with six existent commemorative plaques for graduates of Charlotte High School, currently located in Rochester, New York, who died in service in the war. Memorials created by CHS Class of 1921. They are located along former lane on east side of carousel.
Chattooga County Memorial and Doughboy Statue. Inscription: In Memorium - World War Veterans of Chattooga County, Georgia 1917 - 1918. Erected 1934 by Citizens and Friends of Chattooga County. Fostered by The Trion Company, B.D. Riegel, Pres. & Treas., N.B. Murphy, Vice Pres., A.D. Elliott.
Spirit of The American Doughboy (statue), Copyrighted by E.M. Viquesney, Sculptor, Spencer, Indiana.
Bronze plaques on three sides of the memorial column are inscribed with the names of soldiers from this county that fought in WW1. Photos of these names are attached in the photo gallery. Those that lost their lives are marked with stars next to their names.
Accompanying the memorial is an artillery piece. It has been identified as a German 7.6 Minenwerfer (Trench Mortar) on a carriage probably made post war so it could be displayed as a memorial. In the trenches, it would usually be on a square brace pad. These types of mortars were not used after the war and so were scrapped or taken as a war trophy by the allies.
"IN HONOR OF THE MEN AND WOMEN OF THE TOWN OF CHESTER: WHO SERVED THEIR COUNTRY IN THE WORLD WAR"
Park contains a Memorial Monument to Hoquiam residents lost in World Wars 1, 2, Korea and Vietnam.
Also there is a granite marker to those who built the park and a very old bronze plaque dedicating a tree
to Clara Barton by “The National Woman’s Relief Corps Auxiliary to the Grand Army of the Republic”, an
association of Union Army veterans of the American Civil War.
This war memorial stands on the grounds of the Cheyenne-Arapaho Tribal Headquarters. This is a beautiful war memorial, erected near the tribal administration offices. Four black granite pillars are engraved with the names of tribal members who have served in this Nation's wars. The photo gallery shows closeups of some of the names which are distinctly Native American. Above the four pillars a black granite cross beam reads: "Men and Women Who Served to Protect our Freedoms", and the words: Duty - Honor - Country - Tribe. A red granite gabled pediment is above engraved: "Cheyenne-Arapaho Veterans" and the words: Tsistsistas (Cheyenne) and Hinono'el (Arapaho). The center black pillar has a map of Oklahoma, with tribal symbols. It reads: "In honor of our veterans and the Gold Star Mothers we dedicate this memorial". Beneath that: "Our veterans gave a portion of their lives, and some lost their lives in order for us to enjoy the freedom we have now". The names of those Killed In Action are listed beneath. The memorial stands on an octagonal plaza with two benches and is lit at night. Designed and built by Willis Granite.
This memorial stone is located in the town of Eagle Butte, and honors the Sioux veterans, chiefs, and valiant men who died fighting in WWI.
The impetus to erect this memorial came from Congress, in April 29, 1930, when they passed the resolution to build a memorial in order to honor the twenty-five Sioux men who fought in WWI.
The Chickasaw County Veterans Memorial was dedicated on
November 11, 2013.
Opening into the Memorial is a large archway etched with the
emblems of all branches of the military, with two small tablets,
one one each side, thanking donors and veterans. There are
ten black granite walls inscribed with the names of local
veterans from all wars as well as peacetime. There are also
two obelisks, benches, granite markers and a bronze sculpture
of a young woman and child holding a ceremonially folded
No taxpayer funds were used to build this Memorial. only
donations from veterans, veterans families and other private
sources, as well as grants.
Photo courtesy of Forest County Potawatomi
This memorial is inscribed: In Honor of Those Choctaws Who Gave Their Lives in Defense of Our Nation. It is further dedicated to the Choctaw code talkers of WW1. Although Native Americans were not considered citizens during WW1, roughly 10,000 volunteered to serve. Once they reached the front, Native servicemembers were stereotyped as fierce warriors and frequently assigned to dangerous missions. As a result, they suffered casualty rates five times higher than U.S. troops overall.
A low relief bronze panel depicts a young man wearing a WWI military jacket, and that is set against an upright shaft of New Hampshire granite. At the top is a low relief image of an eagle, with wings spread fan-like upward, with a five-pointed star above its head. It was sculpted by Francoise T. Bourcier and dedicated on March 29, 1959, in memory of Christos Kalivas, the first Greek-American to die in WWI.
This tablet erected to perpetuate the memory of those who sacrificed their lives and honoring those who served in our armed forces.
Donor bricks are located on each side of the walkway leading to the Circleville Veterans Memorial in the small park at approximately 115 E Main Street in Circleville, Utah. The memorial is dedicated to all those who have served, with sections for each war since 1865. A statue of a soldier, which can be seen in the picture gallery, stands near the memorial.
This monument was erected to honor the soldiers & sailors of Irvington, NJ who fought in World War I. It depicts a bronze soldier dressed in a military uniform with an open-collared shirt, holding a bayonet in his lowered right hand. In his left hand, he grasps an upright flagpole topped with a small eagle. A partially unfurled American flag wraps around the flagpole.
In the back of the figure, an anvil is placed atop a tree stump and topped with an open book and an oil lamp. The statue stands on an inscribed marble base decorated in its upper portion with a relief of garland leaves.
Narrative adapted from Smithsonian Institution Research Information System (SIRIS) inventory #NJ000277.
Photo courtesy of: Smithsonian Institution Research Information System (SIRIS)
This bronze plaque and obelisk once stood at the entrance to Old Town Bisbee, but was moved to this location. The date of the move is unknown. The significance of the obelisk is also unknown, but it appears to be topped with an old flag pole ball top and has a bronze American Legion emblem on the front. In the gallery photo of Police HQ, the monument can bee seen to the right of the flag pole base, withe two posts and a chain in front of it.
The plaque reads:
THE CITY OF BISBEE HONORS BY THIS MEMORIAL HER WARRIORS WHO DIED IN THE DEFENSE OF THE PRINCIPALS OF AMERICAN DEMOCRACY AGAINST ENEMIES OF FREEDOM IN WORLD WAR I, WORLD WAR 2, THE KOREAN WAR, THE WAR IN VIETNAM THAT THEIR PATRIOTIC SACRIFICE WILL BE AN INSPIRATION TO SAFE GUARD LIBERTY IN THE UNITED STATES FOREVER.
DEDICATED THIS MEMORIAL DAY
MAY 31, 1976
This plaque is inscribed with the names of "the boys of the city of Renton who served in the World War" as well as the Bible verse John 15:13: "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." A star next to a name signifies "Died In Service," meaning the servicemember was killed in action, died of wounds, died of disease, or died in an accident. The memorial is located in Veterans Memorial Park, south of the Renton History Museum.