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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.

 

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Soldier's Fieldloupe
300 7th Street SW rochester minnesota
Rochester
MN
USA
55902

The Soldiers Field Veteran's Memorial was created to honor Veterans from Southeast Minnesota who died serving our country and dedicated to all who served our country to help keep us free. We remind future generations that we must not only protect ourselves from outside forces who would deny us our freedom, but we must understand that like the downfall of the Roman Empire, our freedom can also be lost from within if we allow our moral and ethical standards to decay. We can not tolerate bigotry or corruption in any form. Those who say they have no influence on our society have forgotten that we each control our own conduct, which then becomes part of our country's weakness or strength.  
- Ken Zubay

 
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Soldier's Memorialloupe
220 1st Ave SW
Leeds
ND
USA
58346
August 7, 1921
George Glynquist

The monument in Leeds was designed by George Glynquist, who served as an army engineer in the war. It was erected by the War Mothers of Leeds and dedicated on August 7, 1921. The bronze plaque lists the names of all who served in WWI from Leeds, including Red Cross nurses. The monument was originally in a park near the railroad but is now in Fireman's Park along with a monument for pioneers.

 
Soldier's Memorial Monumentloupe
Boyd Rd, Contra Costa Blvd and N. Main St
Pleasant Hill
CA
USA
94523

This is a 45-foot white concrete tower with windows and bas-reliefs depicting World War I soldiers. Three are white, one is black, and all are painted with a brown gun and boots, green uniform, and beige background. A circular staircase inside leads to an observation platform.  This monument was erected as a tribute to the 6,341 people from Contra Costa County who served in WWI and the 77 who died. A plaque was added in 1954 to honor those who died in WWII and the Korean War

 
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Soldier's Monumentloupe
Lakewood Cemetery, 3600 Hennepin Ave.
Minneapolis
MN
USA
55408

Manufactured of granite and bronze, this monument is com­posed of five sections which fit together, the nine fool tall center section being the tallest. On the ends are sculpted helmets, canteens, a gas mask, ammunition belts, a saddlebag and a bayonet. It also had medallions of the U.S., the Spanish-American War Veterans, and the Grand Army of the Republic. Atop the center section was a sculpted element, but it was stolen during the 1960s. The monument was dedicated on May 30, 1923, as a tribute to the Minnesota veterans of the Civil War, the Spanish-American War, and WWI.

 
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Soldiers loupe
17 E Main St
Romney
WV
USA
26757

100 Cities / 100 Memorials

100c 100m wwi centennial plaque The Soldiers Memorial, better known as The Doughboy, is located in front of the Hampshire County Courthouse. It is a life-size stone figure of a WWI soldier on a stone base and includes a a bronze tablet that lists the names of the 27 who died during WWI from Hampshire County. Approximately 490 men from the county served in the war. The memorial was dedicated on May 13, 1928 and has recently been restored in honor of the centennial of World War I.  The inscription reads:

In honor of Hampshire's sons who gave their lives and their service in the World War
"We are the dead,
Short days ago we lived,
Felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved."

Lieut. Robert W. Gilkeson • Corp. James Cleveland Lee • Corp. Joshua Davis Slonaker • John Frederick Abe • Arthur C. Bean • Edward Leslie Brown • Thomas Franklin Ewers • Ferman Lee Fultz • Jesse Jones Haines • William Lee Horn • Harry Myron Jackson • Harry Guy Leith • Arthur Sylvester nelson • Ova Truman Parrill • Charles Albert Poland • Joseph Rodney Power • Marshall Pultz • Carter Carson Racey • Herman Herbert Racey • Elza mayo Saville • Roy Sylvester Shanholtzer • Willis Richard Shoemaker • William Bryan Swisher • Foreman Francis Taylor • Edgar Triplett • Charles C. Wolford

 
Erected 1928 by The Hampshire Review.

 
Soldiers & Sailors Memorial - Lakewoodloupe
2503 N. Lake Drive
Lakewood
NJ
USA
08701
1922

This elaborate memorial rests on a slightly curved stone base with four Corinthian columns supporting an ornate, slightly curved roof.  Between the columns stands a stone pedestal with a bronze plaque on the front, topped by an eagle with its wings outspread. 

This memorial, commemorating those who served in World War I, was designed by J&R Lamb Company of New York, and erected by Ellsworth Matthews of Lakewood, NJ.  The local War Memorial Committee raised $8,000 through benefit dances and personal contributions over a two-year period. 

This monument replaced a temporary wooden one that was located at the intersection of Second Street & Clifton Avenue. 

Photo courtesy of:  Ocean County Cultural & Heritage Commission 
Vintage photo courtesy of:  Sheldon Wolpin Lakewood Historical Museum 

 
Soldiers & Sailors Memorial - Ramseyloupe
Bonnyview Park
Ramsey
NJ
USA
07446
1920s

The Soldiers and Sailors Monument in Ramsey, NJ is an elegant classical composition that sits in a grassy island in a park.  Flanked by two other honor roll memorials, the monuments are set in front of a backdrop of six flagpoles with flags, three on either side of the World War I monument.

The monument sits on a stone slab base constructed of three stepped slabs. Rising from either side of the top slab are baseless fluted Doric columns with a full entablature including triglyphs and guttae. The monument is crowned by a pedimented gable. A bronze honor roll plaque is set in a stone surround between the two columns.

Photos courtesy of:  Ramsey Historical Association
Vintage postcard courtesy of:  Ramsey Historical Association, Collection of Daniel Kennedy 

 
Soldiers & Sailors Monument - Jersey Cityloupe
Leonard Gordon Park, Kennedy Blvd & Manhattan Avenue
Jersey City
NJ
USA
07307
1930

This Soldiers & Sailors Monument is a full-length figure of a World War I soldier, wearing a uniform and hat. His left arm is outstretched holding a rifle.  In his right hand he holds a grenade which he is positioned to toss. The painted bronze sculpture stands on a white concrete base. 

The monument was installed by the Hudson City Soldiers & Sailors Welfare League in 1930.

Narrative adapted from Smithsonian Institution Research Information System (SIRIS)  inventory #NJ000481.

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

   
 
Soldiers & Sailors Monument - Wallingtonloupe
Paterson Avenue & Union Plaza
Wallington
NJ
USA
07057

Wallington's monument was created by local citizens as an expression of gratitude, respect & remembrance to those who served in the "Great War." 

Wallington's VFW Pavlick-Koster Post #1640, named after two Wallington war heroes, was formed in 1932, with 40 World War I veterans. 

In addition, an honor roll, framing the names of all the men in service, is still displayed in the council chamber of the municipal building.

Narrative adapted from Wallington Borough, NJ official website. 

Photos courtesy of:  NJ State Historic Preservation Office

 
Soldiers & Sailors World War I Memorialloupe
146 Michigan AVe
Saline
MI
USA
48176

Soldiers & Sailors World War I Memorial

This World War Memorial is of a soldier and his rifle. Inscription on plaque:

Dedicated By
This Community
To The Honor Of Our
Soldiers & Sailors

1922

 

 
Soldiers & Sailors WWI Monument - Montclairloupe
Edgemont Park, Valley Road
Montclair
NJ
USA
07042
1925
Charles Keck

Montclair's landmark World War I memorial in Edgemont Park consists of a tall granite obelisk. The shaft is surmounted by a bronze female figure of Liberty. She stands on a globe which is upheld by eagles. Her right arm is raised straight in the air; her left arm is held out in blessing.

At the base of the obelisk stands a bronze figure grouping. At the front of the group is a WWI soldier, dressed in uniform and carrying a rifle. Behind him is a figure of a sailor.
Columbia, a full-length female figure, stands behind and above the two male figures. She wears a helmet and holds a round shield in her left hand, towering over the soldier & sailor.
The bronze grouping stands on a stepped base surrounded by a flagstone platform.

This memorial was funded by popular subscription; $85,000 was raised. The municipality contributed an additional $6,000 to build two small bridges and to grade the island in the park on which the memorial stands.

Narrative adapted from Smithsonian Institution Research Information System (SIRIS) inventory #NJ000507. 

Photos courtesy of: Lee Sandstead
Vintage postcard courtesy of:  Rutgers University Libraries, Special Collections and University Archives

 
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Soldiers and Sailors Memorialloupe
87 West St
Danbury
CT
USA
06810

Donald F. Curran, a Danbury resident who won a design competition, designed this bronze sculpture of four soldiers and a sailor encircling a flagpole.  The World War I soldier stands with his leg slightly extended, left arm raised to his waist.  The Spanish-American War soldier crouches and holds a rifle.  The Civil War soldier kneels, holding a sword.  The soldier from the Revolutionary War holds a bugle and flagstaff.  The sailor is kneeling and holds signal flags. This memorial was originally dedicated in 1931 to honor Danbury's citizens who fought in the four wars represented, and a plaque was added in 1952 to include World War II.  A dedication at the monument’s base reads: “Dedicated to the soldiers and sailors of Danbury”.

 
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Soldiers and Sailors Memorialloupe
Brandywine Park
Wilmington
DE
USA
19802

100 Cities / 100 Memorials

100c 100m wwi centennial plaqueKnown colloquially as the Todd Memorial, the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial honors the Delawareans who perished in World War I; the extant 1925 commemorative program acknowledging the tribute: "In memory of the men and women who gave their lives for Liberty and Universal Peace".  The Memorial was restored to coincide with the centennial of the Great War and was rededicated in 2018. In 1925 shipbuilder William H. Todd provided $100,000 to create the memorial; it was designed by sculptor H. Augustus Lukeman and consists of a granite obelisk and a triumphant Victory figure.

 
Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Archloupe
2003 Tower St
Trenton
MO
USA
64683
The Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Arch was dedicated in 1920. It is inscribed, "To Grundy County's Silent Victors 1917 1918". When the memorial was constructed a sealed box was imbedded in the concrete below it with the life stories of the 27 men from Grundy County who were killed in World War I. When the arch was place 27 elms were also planted which no long exist. he memorial was rededicated July 4, 1990 to honor all veterans who served in World War I, World War II, Korea, and Vietnam.
 
Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Hallloupe
201 W. Capitol Ave.
Jefferson City
MO
USA
65101

The Soldiers and Sailors Hall (now the History Hall of the Missouri State Museum) was dedicated following WWI to all Missourians who served in that conflict and those previous. The hall is located on the first floor of the Missouri State Capitol building and contains several plaques dedicated by various organizations to the memory of Missouri's contributions to the war effort.

 
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Soldiers and Sailors Monumentloupe
Memorial Park
Mobile
AL
USA
36606

Soldiers and Sailors Monument in Memorial Park

100 Cities / 100 Memorials

100c 100m wwi centennial plaque The Mother's Army and Navy League, organized in 1917, raised $20,000 in order to erect this monument to honor their sons lost during the Great War.  The monument was designed by renowned Mobile architect, George Rogers, and is constructed of Alabama marble.  Construction of the monument began in 1926.  

 
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Soldiers and Sailors Monumentloupe
East Rock
New Haven
CT
USA
06511

The monument was placed on the original site of the Liberty Pole.  Designed by architect Douglas Orr and sculptor Michele Martino, the flagpole is surrounded by a white marble frieze on a six sided base.  Flattened figures of "Peace" and "War," along with two female personifications of the armed services appear on the frieze.

 
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Soldiers and Sailors Monumentloupe
Plymouth
PA
USA
18651
1920
George Brewster

The Soldiers and Sailors Monument in Plymouth, Pennsylvania, honoring those from the area who died during the fighting of World War I.

The monument is the work of the sculptor George Brewster. It was dedicated on November 11, 1920.

 
Soldiers and Sailors Monument loupe
Columbia & Gurney Streets
Cape May
NJ
USA
08204

Soldiers and Sailors Monument "All Wars"

100 Cities / 100 Memorials

100c 100m wwi centennial plaque This granite & marble obelisk monument stands on a small, landscaped traffic island in Cape May. The square cube base, placed on a larger, square stone slab, has bronze plaques mounted on each side. The plaques contain its dedication to Cape May vicinity residents who served in World War I, as well as an Honor Roll.  Thirteen Cape May residents perished during World War I.  The tall stone shaft is square in cross-section & tapers slightly toward the top where a ball with corner finials rests atop a small square slab. Perched on the orb is a large bronze eagle with wings outstretched upward, looking to the side. The shaft also has bronze plaques & medallions attached to its sides.  The plaques were refurbished and the monument was rededicated on November 11, 2018, the centennial of Armistice Day. Photos courtesy of: NJ State Historic Preservation Office. Vintage Postcard courtesy of:  Rutgers University Libraries, Special Collections and University Archives. 

 
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Soldiers and Sailors Parkloupe
655 Cedar Street
Waterloo
IA
USA
50703

The Waterloo Memorial Hall Commission developed Soldiers and Sailors Park
at 655 Cedar Street. The park includes granite monuments, a fountain and bronze
plaques along a 400-foot brick walkway which begins near the west
side of the 5th Street bridge and meanders through the park to the 4th Street bridge. The monuments, historic fountain and plaques commemorate wars and conflicts in which U.S. service men and women have played a part. It also includes a POW/MIA  - “…Known But To God" Memorial Monument. 

 
Soldiers Field Athletic Complex & Veterans Memorialloupe
300 7th St SW
Rochester
MN
USA
55902

The earliest elements of Soldiers Field were started by the Rochester American Legion, William T. McCoy, Post 92.
The Poist was started in 1919, soon after the end of the World War. In the mid 1920’s the Post focused its attention
on the project of building the Soldier’s Field Athletic Complex. There are two original bronze plaques from the mid to
late 1920’s are mounted on either side of a granite monument at the entrance to the Memorial and Sports Complex
(see gallery photos).
Text from original Plaques:
SOLDIERS MEMORIAL FIELD
HONORING
VETERANS OF ALL WARS
DEDICATED TO THE YOUTH OF OLMSTED COUNTY
WM. T. MCCOY POSTNO. 92. THE AMERICAN LEGION
ROCHESTER, MINNESOTA
The second plaque contains the Emblem and the Preamble to the Constitution of the American Legion.

Fast forward about 70 yers, when in October of 1995, the Memorial Committee was formed. Then on June 13th, 1997
the Ground Breaking Ceremony was held. On June 25th, 2000, the Dedication of the Soldiers Field Veterans Memorial.
This Memorial, conceived in 1995, was built without tax dollars due to the time, talent and treasure contributed by the
Memorial Committee and the countless other volunteers who also contributed to honor those who served.
The Wall of Remembrance was created to honor American Service Members from Southeast Minnesota who died while
serving our country undedicated to all who served and now serve to keep us safe and free. May it remind future
generations that our nation must be protected from forces, both outside and inside our borders, that would deny us
our liberty. Please pay special attention to the sculpture of the Woman and Child who is holding the most dreaded
telegram an American family could receive during World War 1 and World War 2.
The Wall of Remembrance honors over 2,500 Service men and women from Southeast Minnesota, who gave their lives
in service to their country.
The Walk of Remembrance is made up of about 6,500 pavers honoring U.S. Veterans and our Allies living or dead for
their service.
The Trees of Remembrance consists of 50 sponsored trees representing every state in these United States.
Let Us Not Forget those who made the Supreme Sacrifice and our Veterans, for they have shown the world that
Freedom Is Never Free

 
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Soldiers Memorial - Kearnyloupe
Veterans Memorial Park, Kearny Ave & Beech Street
Kearny
NJ
USA
07032
1922
Franklin L. Naylor

This memorial is dedicated to Kearny residents killed in WWI.  It consists of a tall Vermont granite shaft topped with a sphere & a bronze eagle with outstretched wings. 
Projecting from the bottom front of the shaft is a pedestal with an inscribed plaque. 
Atop the pedestal stands a bronze statue of a woman in classical dress, her arms partially extended from her sides.

The other three sides of the shafts have granite reliefs of World War I military operations. The back panel depicts two fighters in a dogfight. One side panel shows warships firing on a surfacing submarine. And the other side panel features several doughboys charging out of a trench. 

The memorial was erected by the American Legion, Frobisher Post, with $11,000 of personal donations and $14,000 supplied by the town government.  It was unveiled on May 27, 1922 by General Pershing! 

Narrative adapted from Smithsonian Institution Research Information System (SIRIS) inventory #NJ000159. 

Photos courtesy of:  NJ State Historic Preservation Office 

 
Soldiers Memorial Military Museumloupe
1315 Chestnut Street
St Louis
MO
USA
63103

Soldiers Memorial Military Museum

100 Cities / 100 Memorials

100c 100m wwi centennial plaqueThe Soldiers Memorial Military Museum in downtown St. Louis is a memorial and military museum owned by the City of St. Louis and operated by the Missouri Historical Society. Interior east and west wings contain display cases with military displays and memorabilia from World War I and subsequent American wars. The open-air central breezeway contains a massive black marble cenotaph upon which are engraved the names of all of St. Louis' war dead from World War I. The building was designed by St. Louis architectural firm Mauran, Russell & Crowell and was dedicated by Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1936 and officially opened to the public on Memorial Day 1938.

 
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Soldiers Monumentloupe
Mary Wales Holbrook Park, Union and N. Franklin Sts.
Holbrook
MA
USA
02343

A bronze walking Civil War soldier has his rifle resting on his shoulder, and his long belted coat blows open slightly at the bottom. He stands on a tall granite base flanked by two granite markers added in 1989 honoring the men from Holbrook who died in the Spanish-American War, WWI, WWII, and the Korean and Vietnam Wars. Ir was sculpted by John Horrigan and dedicated in 1918, with half of the funds coming from the Holbrook family.

 
Soldiers Monument - Griswoldloupe
David Hale Fanning Park
Griswold
CT
USA
06351

This monument was made by Smith Granite Co. and dedicated on May 30, 1913 as a tribute to the Griswold men who served in the Civil War.  Nearby granite slabs list the names of those who served in World War I, World War II, and the Korean and Vietnam Wars.  The monument and park were rededicated on April 30, 1989.

 

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