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Monuments & Memorials

"The centennial of World War One offers an opportunity for people in the United States
to learn about and commemorate the sacrifices of their predecessors."

from The World War One Centennial Commission Act, January 14, 2013

DCWorldWarMonumen 1World 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.

Memorial Hunters Club

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.

 

Scott County All Wars Veterans Memorialloupe
Scottsburg
IN
USA
47170
Unknown
 
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Scott Valley Soldiers  Memorialloupe
300 Bridge Street
Bigfork
MT
USA
59911

at Everit L. Sliter Memorial Park  

Beautiful local Veterans Memorial in a park with parking, children’s play area, restrooms, picnic facilities and trails.

 
Scranton WW1 Memorial - Pennsylvanialoupe
1901 Mulberry St,
Scranton
PA
USA
18510
Names of all kias from Lackawanna County. Located inside Veterans Grove picnic area of Nay Aug city park. Behind the museum.
 
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Seaford WW1 Memorialloupe
Seaford Train Station -- New York State Route 27 and Jackson Avenue
Seaford
NY
USA
11783

Dedicated to the residents who served in WW1

 
Searcy County War Memorialloupe
209 Center Street
Marshall
AR
USA
72650

No additional information at this time.

 
Second Division Memorialloupe
President's Park, near 1600 Constitution Ave NW
Washington
DC
USA
20006
July 18, 1936
James Earle Fraser

Dedicated on July 18, 1936 and rededicated on June 20, 1962, this is an 18-foot tall sculpture of a right hand holding a gilded-bronze flaming sword. On the sword's handle is a carved shield with a five-pointed star and a profile of an Indian chief (the second Division's insignia). This memorial was sculpted by James Earle Fraser (1876-1953) and honors the 17,669 members of the Second Division who died in World War I, World War II, and the Korean War.  

 
Second Ward War Memorial - Patersonloupe
Westside Park, Totawa Avenue
Paterson
NJ
USA
07502
1920
Gaetano Federici

Paterson's Second Ward War Memorial is an allegorical female figure of America.  She stands holding a staff in her right hand, classically draped in long robes.  On her head, she wears a laurel wreath.  A flag with the words "Don't Tread on Me" hangs on her left side.

The sculptor was Paterson's own, Gaetano Federici. 

The inscription reads:  "Erected by the People of the Second Ward and Friends in honor of those who served and died for our country in the World War 1917-1918 / Died in Service (list of 25 names) Nurses in Service (list of 10 names) Enlisted in Service (list of 38 names)."

A bronze plaque on back of base lists an additional 216 names. 

The sculpture was originally installed on a center island in Union Avenue, then was moved to the north side of the street, and was later relocated to West Side Park in 1949 due to traffic concerns and increasing vandalism. In West Side Park, the sculpture was installed in the center of a large circular reflecting pool, but the pool was later drained. Vandalism continued in West Side Park, and in 1979, the sculpture was knocked to the ground in an unsuccessful theft attempt. 

Narrative adapted from Smithsonian Institution Research Information System (SIRIS) inventory #77002923.

Photos courtesy of: Smithsonian Institution Research Information System (SIRIS)

 
Sedalia Doughboy Statueloupe
Pettis County Courthouse, 415 S. Ohio Ave
Sedalia
MO
USA
65301

A life size copper statue of a WWI infantryman rests on a rose marble and granite base. The figure carries a rifle through No Man's Land, and appears to be ready to throw a hand grenade. The base is inscribed with the names of war dead from WWI, WWII, and the Korean and Vietnam Wars. lt was originally dedicated in 1920 by the Pettis County American Legion Post No. 16.

 
Seminole County World War Monumentloupe
Sanford
FL
USA
32771
1919

February 23, 1919, the monument was first unveiled at Central Park (now Centennial Park), honoring 11 men from Seminole County who died in service to their country in WWI. It is made of marble and in the form of a broken shaft symbolizing the youthful lives sacrificed in the prime of manhood for the "Cause of the right and the just." F.L. Miller of Milvis Marble Co. presented the monument to Seminole County.

February 24, 1985, the monument was moved to the American Legion Post 53 at 3506 Orlando Drive.

June 1988, the monument was moved to the American Legion's new home at 2874 S. Sanford Ave in Sanford.

November 11, 2006, the monument was moved to a place of honor here at the Veterans Memorial Park.

May 28, 2007, the monument was rededicated to the people of Seminole County.

 
Sergeant Alvin C. York Statueloupe
Nashville
TN
USA
37219
1968
Felix de Weldon

Statue of World War I hero Sergeant Alvin C. York located on the grounds of the Tennessee State House in Nashville, Tennessee.

The base of the statue is inscribed:

Front:

ALVIN C. YORK
ARMED WITH HIS RIFLE AND PISTOL, HIS COURAGE AND SKILL THIS ONE TENNESSEAN
SILENCED A GERMAN BATTALION OF 35 MACHINE GUNS KILLING 25 ENEMY SOLDIERS AND CAPTURING 132 IN THE ARGONNE FOREST OF FRANCE, OCTOBER 8, 1918.

Left Side:

ALVIN C. YORK
1887-1964
PALL MALL FENTRESS COUNTY
TENNESSEE

Right Side:

FELIX DE WELDON
SCULPTOR
MONUMENT ERECTED 1968
BY ACT OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
OF THE STATE OF TENNESSEE

Back:

WHAT YOU DID WAS THE GREATEST THING ACCOMPLISHED
BY ANY PRIVATE SOLDIER OF ALL THE ARMIES OF EUROPE.
MARSHAL FERDINAND FOCH
COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF ALLIED ARMIES

 
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Serpentine Wallloupe
253 Main St.
Greenfield
MA
USA
01301

Homer Gunn sculpted this bronze serpentine wall which is ten feet tall and approximately 100 feet long, weighing three tons. It has on it relief and cut-out images illustrating twentieth century warfare from WWI through the Korean War. WWII is symbolized with the 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor, airplanes, jeeps, trucks moving across a pontoon bridge, a helmet, a landing barge, submarines, a Sherman tank, paratroopers, an M1 rifle, flying fortresses, an aircraft carrier, the Pacific front with palm trees, a PT boat and the first atomic bomb. The Korean War is represented by the United Nations building, B-24 bombers, helicopters, a Walker tank, a walkie-talkie, a bazooka, jet planes, a wounded soldier tended by a medic, soldiers around a campfire and a map of Korea. It was dedicated on November 11, 1965, to those who served and died in those wars.

 
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Service Roll Memorialloupe
Deer Rd
Margie
MN
USA
56658

A small memorial to local residents who served in World War I.

 
Service Star Legion WWI Memorial Flagpoleloupe
N. Prospect Ave. at Lincoln Memorial Dr.
Milwaukee
WI
USA
53202

This is a flagpole topped with a bronze eagle and four reliefs carved onto an octagonal granite base.  It was sculpted by Benjamin Franklin Hawkins and dedicated by the Service Star Legion in October of 1932 to honor the veterans of World War I.

Background: A report surfaced in the June 2,1927 edition of the Milwaukee Sentinel stating that there was discussion and debate arising as to where to best place a monument to soldiers and sailors, intended to be erected by the Milwaukee Chapter of the Service Star Legion, an organization of war mothers.

Location debate continued while the group considered designs for the project, and finally settled on a replica "doughboy" statue, of which there were already three erected in various eastern cities. Unfortunately, Milwaukee's Art Commission rejected the selection, causing members of the Service Star Legion to appeal to Milwaukee's alderman to overrule the Art Commission by resolution. Alderman John Koerner answered the call, and introduced a resolution at a special Milwaukee Common Council meeting in late July 1930, which was approved. This set up a stand-off for a time between the commission and the council, with A. C. Hansen, Secretary of the Art Commission, being quoted in an August 1, 1930 Milwaukee Journal article as citing a state law that gave the commission primacy over public art installation decisions, making the council's action void. It was eventually ruled that Hansen was right, and the Milwaukee Art Commission's decision stood.

This slowed project momentum while the Service Star Legion figured out how to follow through with the Art Commission's request that they hold a contest to pick an artist. The contest commenced in 1933, and members of the Legion met at the Art Institution on September 18, 1933 to view the 17 models that came in from artists throughout the country. Alfred G. Pelikan, director of the Art Institution, was quoted in a September 20, 1933 Milwaukee Journal article as saying, "We are just helping to arrange the exhibition. I was asked to help judge the memorial contest, but I said 'nosiree.' I've got enough trouble of my own."

While the women of the Service Star Legion ultimately settled on Benjamin Franklin Hawkins' flagpole design, they were reported to have little enthusiasm for it. Mrs. Louis Manegold, chairwoman of the Legion's Memorial Design Committee, said, "We picked this as the best of the designs submitted, but there was not one in the competition that appealed to us as much as the doughboy. He seemed typical of the feeling of the boys when we saw them come home in 1919. This is graceful and impressive, but it doesn't express a thing."

From there, developments moved quickly from approval to planning, and then to a groundbreaking ceremony on August 1, 1934 at the chosen site, a small triangle of land bounded by N. Second St., N. Plankinton Ave. and W. Wells St. A few months later the project was complete, and a dedication ceremony was held on November 11, 1934, then known as Armistice Day. The flagpole unveiling was seen as the highlight of the day honoring the 750 Milwaukeeans who lost their lives in World War I.

The flagpole stayed in its location until June 14, 1979, when it was moved to be closer to the War Memorial Center as part of MacArthur Memorial Week, June 7 - 14. The flagpole had stood taller at its original location, installed atop two octagonal granite stones, but was relocated with only one of those base stones to the new location.

 
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Servicemen's Memorialloupe
Herring Run Park Belair and Shannon Drives
Baltimore
MD
USA
21213

This is a bronze sculpture created by Edward Berge (1876—1924), depicting a spread-winged eagle perched atop an unfurled scroll hanging down the side of a granite base. In its claws is an oak branch. On the stroll are the names ol the men from ihe Belair Rd. section of Baltimore who died during WWI. It was erected in 1921 at Belair Rd. and Glenmore Ave., and moved to another section of Herring Run Park in 1925. It was finally moved to its present site in 1933.

 
Sevier County War Memorialloupe
115 N. 3rd St.
De Queen
AR
USA
71832
No additional information at this time.
 
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Sevier Valley Veterans Memorialloupe
800 N Main St
Richfield
UT
USA
84701
2012

This site has four granite memorial markers for those who have served in all wars, listed by service branch. Gold stars mark the names of those who died in service. Around the markers and a central memorial structure stand seven flags: one for each branch of service, the United States flag, and the POW/MIA flag.

 
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Sgt. Alvin C. York Graveloupe
Wolf River Cemetery
Pall Mall
TN
USA
38577

Sgt. Alvin C. York Grave

100 Cities / 100 Memorials

100c 100m wwi centennial plaque Sgt. Alvin Cullum York was one of the most decorated soldiers in World War I. On 8 October 1918, in the Argonne Forest in France, he managed on his own to eliminate a German machine gun unit and killed over 20 Germans, with only his rifle and a pistol. The German officer responsible for the machine gun position had emptied his pistol while firing at York, but failed to hit him. This officer then offered to surrender and York accepted. York then led the handful of survivors in a counterattack that resulted in the capture of 132 German soldiers. York was awarded the Medal of Honor and became an instant celebrity.  After the war he led a quiet life and died on 2 September 1964.  In honor of the centennial of the 1918 Armistice that ended World War I, the grave has been restored to include a new handicap accessible pathway to his grave, new benches, a decorative fence, poppies planted along with new signage that describes the importance of his grave, the Centennial of WWI, and his connection to Rotary International (which sponsored the restoration project along with the Sgt. York Patriotic Foundation). 

 
Sgt. Perry R. Shuey Monumentloupe
Quartermaster Road
Jonestown
PA
USA
17038

Information:
The monument located adjacent to the man-made lake bearing his name, Shuey Lake. Sgt. Perry R. Shuey , a native of Lebanon, was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for extraordinary heroism in action during World War I near Fleville, France on Oct. 5, 1918. The monument was dedicated sometime in the late 1950s. It is located on Fort Indiantown Gap, an active military installation. Please visit the installation website for additional information www.ftig.ng.mil

Location:
Quartermaster Road
Fort Indiantown Gap, PA, 17003

 
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Shadow Falls Park Memorialloupe
East River Road
St Paul
MN
USA
55105

This large monument consists of a cross atop a tall stone spire overlooking the Mississippi River in St. Paul, MN. On the east face of the monument is a plaque reading: 'IN MEMORY OF THE MEN AND WOMEN OF SAINT PAUL AND RAMSEY COUNTY WHO SACRIFICED THEIR LIVES IN THIS WORLD WAR. "GREATER LOVE HATH NO MAN THAN THIS"' and 'ERECTED BY SAINT PAUL CHAPTER DAUGHTERS OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION A.D. 1922'

 
Sharp County War Memorial loupe
154 Nix Ridge Road
Ash Flat
AR
USA
72513
No additional information at this time.
 
Sharpsburg First World War Monumentloupe
Sharpsburg
MD
USA
21782

Granite monument located in front of the Sharpsburg Town Hall honoring those from the Sharpsburg area who served during World War I.


There are three bronze markers bearing the names of 67 men from Sharpsburg and the district.

 
Shelby County Veterans Memorialloupe
112 N Main St
Columbiana
AL
USA
35051
1954
Erected by the American Legion.
 
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Shelbyville World War Memorialloupe
100 E. Main Street
Shelbyville
MO
USA
63469

The text on this monument reads:

In honor of those who made the supreme sacrifice in World War 1914-1918

Ballinger, Roy C.
Bower, Ollie G.
Clapper, Earl F.
Collier, Robert E.
Drain, Benjamin S.
Farr, George E.
Finney, Emmert O.
Fitzpatrick, John U.
Gaines, Fletcher W.
Mastings, Owen
Howard, Jerry
Hughes, George
Meyer, Dennis C.
Moss, Leland S.
Oak, Elmer
Schofield, F. Lee
Wilson, Robert K.

 
Shepherd University WWI Alumni Memorial Plaqueloupe
102 East High St
Shepherdstown
WV
USA
25443

The inscription on this memorial plaque reads: 

In memory of
Henry Luckett Clapham • Ira Moser Derr • Thomas Franklin Ewers • John Chrisman Goghenour • Washington Berry Grove • Marshall Earle Martin • Wilmer Birdie Miller • Garnett Otis Nelson • Hubert Monroe Phares • Joseph Rodney Power • Thomas Christian Reinhart • William Bryan Swisher • Kenna McCarta Weber
who gave their lives for their country
★★★★★★
and in honor of
one hundred ninety seven others
of this college who rendered
service in the World War
1917 - 1919

Erected by the Senior Class of 1918, presented to Shepherd College.

 
Shreveport Municipal Memorial Auditoriumloupe
Shreveport
LA
USA
71101
 

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