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.
The St. Croix Chippewa Veterans Memorial is located in the Hertel RV Park, near the St. Croix Casino in Webster, Wisconsin. The memorial is made of black granite stone. Inscribed atop the front of the memorial is the St. Croix seal. Under the seal are inscribed the individual veteran’s names. And along the bottom is an inscription which reads: “The St. Croix Chippewa Indians dedicates this memorial to honor all the men and women who served in the United States armed forces. Many chi migwetches ‘big thank you’ to you and your families.”
On the back-side of the memorial are the seals of the branches of the military, the POW-MIA logo, and an image of a spear, with a military helmet on-top, crossed with an M-16 rifle, with a ceremonial headdress on-top.
No additional information at this time.
The Memorial Bell Tower at St. James Episcopal Church replaced the original steeple in 1919, honoring the church members who served in World War I. Seven young men died in the war; 91 others fought and returned home.
The Bell Tower contains 13 bells that have rung hourly for almost a century. Seven bells are engraved with the name of one of the soldiers killed.
Beneath the cornerstone of the tower is a bronze medal commemorating the signing of the Treaty of Peace at Versailles. The buttresses contain shields symbolizing the US, England, Belgium, France & Italy, as well as Victory, and the 29th & 78th Army Divisions which included New Jersey troops. A bronze tablet honor roll is set into the tower's vestibule wall.
Vintage postcard courtesy of: Montclair Historical Society
Bells photo courtesy of: Montclair Public Library Local History Collection
This bronze tablet honors the 21 fallen parishioners of St. John’s Cathedral (RC) that made the supreme sacrifice during the great war. The plaque was commissioned by the parents and parishioners of St. John’s under the direction of Rev. Dean McNulty in 1919. The members of the parish held a solemn high military mass on Thanksgiving. “At the conclusion of the mass, the roll call of the twenty-one dead was held, and each of the girls answered a name as a candle on the altar was extinguished and the bell in the tower was tolled” (The Morning Call, Nov. 28, 1919). The plaque was then unveiled and blessed by Rev. Dean McNulty.
The plaque was taken down in the 1980s when the Cathedral was renovated. It was missing for over 30 years and just this summer, was relocated. There will be a memorial mass and plaque rededication ceremony on Nov.11, 2018 at 11:30 am for the 100th Anniversary of the Armistice at the church.
The plaque reads as follows:
Roll of Honor
In memory of the following members of St. John’s Church who gave their lives for God and country.
Edmund P. Clinton
John J. Farrell
John F. Watson
Robert J. McKewen
Walter Hintzen, Jr.
John P. Brown
“Eternal rest give unto them, O Lord!
And let perpetual light shine upon them.
May they rest in peace. Amen.”
The first photo is of Bridget Shields Healey whose brother, Edward J. Shields, perished in the great war and is one of the twenty-one men listed on the plaque. The second photo is of the plaque today.
This is a life-size bronze relief of the Alma Mater, leaning against an oval-shaped shield and wearing a form-fitting classical garment and armor. The shield bears the image of the college crest and an eagle. It is attached to a limestone stele decorated at the top with a Greek key frieze. It was sculpted by Hans Schuler (1874 1951) and erected in 1920 to honor the 452 students who served in WW I. and the 24 who died in service.
Memorial plaque dedicated to all the congregants from Baltimore's St. Martin's Roman Catholic Church who served during WWI.
Dedicated in 1937, the World War I St. Mihiel American Cemetery and Memorial, 40.5 acres in extent, contains the graves of 4,153 of our military dead. The majority of these died in the offensive that resulted in the reduction of the St. Mihiel salient that threatened Paris. The burial area is divided by Linden alignment trees and paths into four equal plots. At the center is a large sundial surmounted by an American eagle. To the west is a statue of a World War I soldier and at the eastern end is a semi-circular overlook dominated by a sculpture representing a victory vase.
Beyond the burial area to the south is the white stone memorial consisting of a small chapel, a peristyle with a large rose-granite funeral urn at its center, and a map building. The chapel contains a beautiful mosaic portraying an angel sheathing his sword. On two walls of the museum are recorded the names of 284 of the missing. Rosettes mark the names of those since recovered and identified. On the wall facing the door is a large map of inlaid marble depicting the St. Mihiel Offensive.
The inscription on this plaque reads:
Erected and Dedicated
To The Soldiers
Of World War I
By St. Tammany Parish
Kevin Davis, Parish President.
This courthouse is also a World War Memorial and was dedicated on June 16, 1937. Nearly half the funds for construction were raised locally while the rest came from the Public Works Administration. The dedication program includes the words "Engendered in its makeup is not only the labors of the Artisans but the efforts of all. We hereby dedicate this building as the sum total of all the devotion, of all the people, for all time, to those who gave that last full measure."
This Italian marble sculpture created by an unknown artist was dedicated in 1932 and is approximately six feet tall. On a granite base is a dedication by the Class of 1932 to the students of Mississippi State College who died in service in WWI. The sculpture depicts a uniformed and helmeted WWI soldier holding a rifle at his right side. He wears an ammunition belt from which is hanging a bayonet. A tree trunk behind him reaches to mid-thigh.
The Michigan Veterans Memorial recognizes the sacrifices of Michigan men and women who served in World War I, World War II, and the Korean and Vietnam conflicts.
The memorial was dedicated at 11:00 a.m. on Thursday, November 11, 1982, by Michigan's Veteran Organizations and Auxiliaries.
“Dedicated to the 57,413 Minnesotans who so gallantly served in ‘the war to end all wars.'”
"GOLD STAR MISSOURIANS”
Each of the 1,075 Gold Stars above this exhibit represents a St. Loiusan who gave his or her
life during “The World War”. Their names are listed on the staircase wall in this area and mirror
mirror those inscribed on the cenotaph at the Soldiers Memorial Museum in downtown St. Louis.
This exhibit also contains World War memorabilia and memorial items that belonged to soldiers
a\nd meant to honor their service.
This monument was put forth by the State Legislature in 1919 as part of the plan for the Memorial Bridge connecting Kittery with Portsmouth, New Hampshire (dedicated in 1923). Governor Percival Baxter appointed a memorial commission in 1923. Russian Jewish sculptor, Bashka Paeff (raised in Boston), was awarded the commission to design the monument. The monument, featuring a woman holding a young child, was controversial at the time--considered too pacifist. Titled "The Sacrifices of War." The monument was dedicated on Armistice Day in 1924--the sculpture was dedicated on Memorial Day in 1926, and the Memorial was re-dedicated in 2000, when Angus King was Governor, after renovations had been made. The initial monument included a time capsule, replaced in 2000.
The University of New Hampshire Memorial Union Building is the New Hampshire's official state war memorial. Located on the third floor of the MUB, the Memorial Room reflects that distinction and honors all New Hampshire residents who perished while in military action from World War I through present day. Funds to create this building as a war memorial came from alumni, the state, businesses and civic groups. In 1953, when Governor Hugh Gregg signed the proclamation declaring the UNH Memorial Union as the State's official war memorial (prior to building construction that was completed in 1957), he wrote that it was "desirable that as many youth of the state as possible should know and revere the courage and the sacrifice of New Hampshire men and women who served their country." Gregg and the many community members who worked to create this building wanted it to be a place to prompt discussion and thought, a place for quiet reflection, and a place of inspiration. By placing this building and this room in the state's Land Grant University, it was hoped that generations of students to come would be inspired to have these discussions.
On the grounds of the Seward County Courthouse is a statue erected on June 25, 1924, by the Ben Harrison Chapter of the DAR and Post Three of the G.A.R. to honor the local veterans of the Civil War. It is a standing soldier with a gun on his shoulder, atop an obelisk dedicated to the veterans of Gettysburg, Shiloh and Antietam. The head was originally larger, as it was intended to have been placed on a building dome and seen from a long distance. It was sculpted by Fred Kimball and dedicated on July 23, 1924. On July 4, 1973, the Seward Jaycees added a plaque to each corner of the cement curbing around the statue to honor the men who fought in WWI, WWII, Korea and Vietnam.
A granite stone marker has attached to it a metal plaque honoring those from Sterling who died during WWI, WWII, and the Korean War. It was placed here in 1984.
This memorial is dedicated to the servicemembers of Stevens County who lost their lives in WWI and later wars. It is located in front of the Stevens County Administration Building, across the street from the post office.
Dedicated: November 7, 2009
The Memorial Monument has many feature elements including famous quotes etched in granite
along with many veteran’s pavers and a sculpture.
PFC Ivan Stringer
Killed In Action
16th Infantry Regiment - 1st Infantry Division
“The Big Red One”
PFC Stringer’s name appears on the 1st I.D. Memorial Monument in France along with 1,137 of his fellow fallen comrades.
Location: D-26 , Cantigny , 80-Somme , Picardie , France
On the D-26, between Cantigny and Montdidier, about 1/2 mile SE of Cantigny, on the north side of the road.
The 1st Infantry Division is a combined arms division of the United States Army, and is the oldest continuously
serving in the Regular Army. It has seen continuous service since its organization in 1917 during World War I.
It was officially nicknamed "The Big Red One" after its shoulder patch and is also nicknamed “The Fighting First”.
A gravestone (see pictures gallery) marks the final resting place of James Stiles, who served in the U.S. Army during WWI. Nearby is a marble copy of Auguste Rodin's "The Thinker," sitting atop a rock formation on a rectangular marble base and flanked by two urns.