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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.

100 Cities - 100 Memorials

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  • Memorial Hunters Club Submission: thewanderer
  • Thomas J Bundy Walter McIntosh William Allsbrook Mulloy Daniel Oliver Spencer Hubert Paul Terrell
  • Dedication Date: 1919
29520 Cheraw
SC
USA

In the municipal park on Market Street, stands a nice monument dedicated to the fallen of the community in the Great War.

The plaque text reads:
These Five Oaks Planted 1919

In Memory Of
Thomas J Bundy
Walter McIntosh
William Allsbrook Mulloy
Daniel Oliver Spencer
Hubert Paul Terrell
They made the supreme sacrifice
by giving their lives in World War I
Dedicated by Live Oaks Post 23
American Legion
1979

  • Photos courtesy of Lamar Veatch
251 East Marietta St.
30114 Canton
GA
USA
“In Honor of Our Boys Who Fought in the World War”

“Their Names May Be Forgotten But Their Deeds Are Recorded in the Annals of Their Grateful Country”.
  • Dedication Date: 1950
100 W Main St
35960 Centre
AL
USA

Erected by V.F.W. Leah-Rains Post 4652.

  • Memorial Hunters Club Submission: The Wanderer
Heekin Ave.
45208 Cinncinnati
OH
USA

The inscription on this memorial bench reads:

In memory of the citizens of Hamilton County who gave their lives in the country's service. 1917 - 1918. These cherry trees were planted by the Garden Club of Cincinnati. 1920

  • Memorial Hunters Club Submission: The Wanderer
1376 Grant Circle
01930 Gloucester
MA
USA

Erected in 1956, the inscription on this marker reads:

This Circle
Erected by The
Commonwealth
of
Massachusetts
1956
Is Dedicated to Honor
Chester H. Grant
1897 – 1954 A soldier and devoted citizen who faithfully served his community, state and nation in war and in peace.
A member of the Yankee Division 104th U.S. Infantry. Served in World War I in France 1917 – 1919.
He was cited three times for meritorious conduct under fire and received the silver star with palm.
As a public official for the city of Gloucester he displayed great ability in the performance of his municipal duties.

  • Memorial Hunters Club Submission: Aaron & Abraham Lefkowitz
81 Main Street
10918 Chester
NY
USA

"IN HONOR OF THE MEN AND WOMEN OF THE TOWN OF CHESTER: WHO SERVED THEIR COUNTRY IN THE WORLD WAR"

  • Memorial Hunters Club Submission: Robert Shay, PH3, USNR-R, 1964-70
Simpson Ave. at 8th Street
98550 Hoquiam
WA
USA

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.

100 Red Moon Circle
73022 El Reno
OK
USA

Cheyenne-Arapaho-Veterans Memorial Wall

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.

Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation
Eagle Butte
SD
USA

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.

  • Memorial Hunters Club Submission: Robert Shay, PH3, USNR-R, 1964-70
8 East Prospect Street
50659 New Hampton
IA
USA

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
American flag.
No taxpayer funds were used to build this Memorial. only
donations from veterans, veterans families and other private
sources, as well as grants.

  • Dedication Date: May 26, 1986
500 2nd Ave N
35045 Clanton
AL
USA
Pine Street and Quincy Street
94108 San Francisco
CA
USA

100 Cities / 100 Memorials

100c 100m wwi centennial plaque This  is 3' x 4' bronze plaque dedicated to the veterans of Chinese ancestry who made the supreme sacrifice in World War I and World War II. It is located in St. Mary's Park (Square) in San Francisco's Chinatown. The plaque was a joint venture in the early 1950s of the American Legion, Cathay Post #384 and Veterans of Foreign Wars, Chinatown Post #4618. Money was raised through a community fundraiser.  Memorial Day annual services are ongoing.

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.

Kalivas Park, Lake, Cedar, Chestnut, and Barry Sts.
03103 Manchester
NH
USA

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.

  • Dedication Date: 1948
115 S. Main Street, Churubusco IN 46723
46723 Churubusco
IN
USA

This tablet erected to perpetuate the memory of those who sacrificed their lives and honoring those who served in our armed forces.

  • Memorial Hunters Club Submission: Memorial Hunter: Robert Shay, PH3, USNR-R, 1964-70
115 E Main Street
84723 Circleville
UT
USA

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.

  • NJ000277
  • Charles Keck
  • Dedication Date: 1922
  • 1922
  • 1921
  • Depth: 3 ft
  • Width: 3 ft
Springfield Avenue & Nesbitt Terrace
07111 Irvington
NJ
USA

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)

  • Memorial Hunters Club Submission: thewanderer
21229 Baltimore
MD
USA

Inscription: As a lasting expression of their gratitude and affection, have placed this tablet as a testimonial to the young men of this community, who, in a spirit of unselfish patriotism, volunteered at their country's call, in the cause of democracy.

  • Plaque or tablet
  • Women's Auxiliary of Leonard H. Hawkins Post No. 156, American Legion
  • Depth: 1
  • Width: 25 1/2
Hawkins Park
City Island Ave
10464 Bronx
NY
USA

IN HONOR OF THE / BOYS OF CITY ISLAND / WHO SERVED IN THE WORLD WAR / [104 names] / AND IN MEMORY OF / LEONARD H. HAWKINS / WHO GAVE HIS LIFE FOR HIS COUNTRY / THIS TABLET DEDICATED BY THE PEOPLE / OF CITY ISLAND AND ERECTED BY THE / WOMEN'S AUXILIARY OF LEONARD H. HAWKINS / POST NO. 156 OF THE AMERICAN LEGION

  • Memorial Hunters Club Submission: Robert Shay, PH3, USNR-R, 1964-70
Bisbee Police Department Headquarters
85603 Bisbee
AZ
USA

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 be 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