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 inscription on this marker, erected in 1995 by Treasure Chest Casino, reads:
Dedicated November 11, 1995
The United States had a regular Army of only 200,000 men when it declared war on Germany on April 6, 1917.
With a need for a larger army, Congress passed a Selective Service Act that made all able-bodied men between the ages of 21 and 30 subject to military service. The government put nearly 4 million men in uniform and sent about 2 million soldiers overseas as members of the American Expeditionary Force.
WWI infantrymen were called "Doughboys" because of the similarity of the buttons worn on their uniforms to a popular Civil War era doughnut called a "doughboy".
This historical marker describes how Wisconsin struggled during World War I. It is located in a rest area on westbound I-94 between exits 41 and 45 near Menomonie, WI. The marker reads:
"World War I
The outbreak of war in Europe in August 1914 did not involve the United States directly. Americans expected to remain neutral in the struggle between Great Britain, France, Russia and Italy against Germany and its allies. The desire for neutrality was particularly strong in Wisconsin, with 25% of the population of Germanic extraction. But by 1917, a majority of Americans favored the cause of Great Britain and France, and President Woodrow Wilson accepted the need to defeat Germany.
The wartime period was stressful for Wisconsin. Some Americans vilified Wisconsinites as being pro-German. Super-patriots committed outrages against those suspected of "disloyalty." German culture was denigrated.
Despite such tensions, Wisconsin citizens oversubscribed to their Liberty Loan quotas and responded enthusiastically to the call to arms. Over 122,000 entered military service, of whom 15,266 served in the Wisconsin National Guard, which became the Thirty-Second Division. By war's end on November 11, 1918, almost all of the Wisconsinites killed in action and fully one-third of the 6,300 wounded were members of the Thirty-Second or "Red Arrow" Division, whose veterans earned over 800 medals for valor.
Located in the Grotto of the Dayton, Ohio VA Medical Center. The original plaque was dedicated in 1984. On 11 Nov. 2018 the Miami Valley Military History Museum placed a new plaque honoring the Centennial.
This monument consists of a rusticated pink granite slab, with a bronze honor roll plaque mounted in its center. This plaque features a raised frame and an eagle with spread wings decorating the upper section, with its wings and a portion of its head projecting above the top of the frame. The lower portion is reserved for the honor roll listing the Milford residents who served in World War I.
Photo courtesy of: Alan Edelson & Historical Marker Database
This memorial park is dedicated to the memory of the 12 men of Jermyn who made the supreme sacrifice for their country. In 1920, 12 trees, which line the roadway, were planted as a living remembrance for their immortal sacrifice. The replica rock depicts the 1918 carving of Victor Slawinsky's Memory of an American Doughboy - Spirit of an American Soldier. The original rock carving is located on the old road to Hosie Dam & the mining ghost town of Edgerton. The inscription on the rocks reads:
MEMORIAL TO THOSE OF JERMYN WHO GAVE THEIR LIVES IN WORLD WAR SERVICE
DEDICATED BY THE WILLIAM J. GRIFFITHS POST 465 AMERICAN LEGION
Listed names: Carl Baker, William J.Griffiths, Thomas Harvey, Richard T. Henwood, Joseph Houston, David S. Jones, Frank Kelly, George R. Morgan, Maurice L. Phillips, James Roach, John Zaleski, Nicolas E. Selgrath
On November 11, 2005, the park was rededicated, continuing the memory and providing a peaceful river park.
This monument is constructed of rusticated pink granite. Its base consists of two slabs with the upper face of the smaller second slab angled inward to meet the bottom edges of the battered granite pier that comprises the bulk of the monument. The pier is surmounted by a ball resting on a base slab. A bronze eagle. with head to the side and wings open. sits atop the ball. A bronze plaque topped by a fleur-de-lis motif & garlands is placed in the center of the front face of the pier. This plaque commemorates Collingswood residents who served in World War I.
Photos courtesy of: NJ State Historic Preservation Office
The inscription on this memorial reads:
Not long after World War I, in 1923, the Wyoming Women’s Club decided that Wyoming should erect a memorial honoring those who had served in that war. They formed a testimonial committee that included members of the village council. The committee selected local sculptress Mary L. Alexander to create the statue and raised $5,000 to commission the work. During this period, it was decided that the statue should honor all who served - the idealistic spirit of America’s youth. It shows a young man rolling up his sleeves ready to work without a rifle or the uniform of a traditional doughboy. The statue was dedicated on November 11, 1926, the 7th anniversary of Armistice Day. It was unveiled by Mayor Frank Bonham on the lawn of what was then the Wyoming Women’s Club where it stands today. This plaque is presented by the Wyoming Women’s Club on the occasion of their 100th Anniversary
This wooden engraved plaque lists the names of local service members who lost their lives in World War I. It is located in the main entrance hallway of the capitol building.
Photos courtesy of Some Gave All War Memorials Blog.
This large memorial, constructed in 1926 of stone, slate and gilt, is dedicated to the men of Yale who died in World War I. Nearly 9,500 Yale students and alumni served in the Great War, and over 200 Yalies were killed. Their names are carved into the walls of Woolsey Hall, and this World War I memorial on Hewitt Quadrangle in the center of campus honors them. The memorial was erected by Yale alumni.
A granite boulder serves as a base for a rectangular bronze relief plaque sculpted by John P. Pramino. It depicts a standing Grecian woman with extended arms, wearing a long gown and sandals and holding a laurel in each hand. Each arm rests on a slightly raised column bearing a list of names of the men of Yarmouth who served in WWI. It was created by the Yarmouth Grange and dedicated on September 4, 1926. Only the boulder survives.
Dedicated to Yazoo County (MS) members of the Armed Forces who gave their lives while serving during times of war.
No additional information at this time.
In honor of our brave men who served in the World War and our devoted men and women who in hospital and in hut heartened and sustained our fighting forces and in memeory of those who served in the cause of humanity sealed their devotion with their lives
A roster of the names of these men and these women is preserved in the archives of the city hall
Erected by the Ypsilanti Patriotic Service League 1919
In honor of our brave men of the 107th field signal batallion U.S.A. which brigaded with the 32nd division rendered distinguished service Chateau Theirry Soissons Fismes Juvigny and in the Argonne
and in memeory of those who served in the cause of humanity gave the full measure of devotion
A roster of the names of these men and is preserved in the archives of the city hall
Erected by the Ypsilanti Patriotic Service League 1919
Yuma's Armed Forces Memorial Park is located at the site of the old Yuma railroad depot. Created by local business owners, service organizations, the Chamber of Commerce and the community, the one-acre park has several walls with more than 2,600 black granite plaques honoring all past, present, and future Yuma-area veterans. The plaques are made of solid granite. Each is eight inches high, 16 inches wide and individually engraved with the person's name, rank, dates of service, and service emblem. There are currently 260 World War I veterans’ plaques in the Armed Forces Park. Additionally, the names of WWI soldiers are on a WWI statue at the nearby courthouse. The park also has polished granite tables etched with the service emblems of the various branches of the nation's armed services - Army, Navy, Marines, Merchant Marines, Air Force, Coast Guard and National Guard. A table honors prisoners of war and those missing in action. Several benches allow visitors to sit down and meditate.
This life-size metal statue depicts a WWI infantryman carrying a rifle and grenade through the barbed wire and stumps of No Man's Land. It was funded by contributions of people from Muskingum County and was installed in November of 1929.
Plaque: To commemorate those who at the call of their country, left all that was dear, endured hardship, faced danger, and finally passed out of sight of men by the path of duty and sacrifice giving up their lives that others might live in freedom. Let those who come after see to it that their names not be forgotten. By the Citizens Memorial Committee and Soldiers' and Sailors' Memorial Committees of the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars and Jewish Veterans of the Wars of the Republic comprising local boards 82 to 88.
Left: Harry Abramson --- Isidore Ashe --- Morris Bass --- Jacob Bergrin --- Isaac Berlin --- Bonche Boisa --- Jacob Borker --- Harry Britman --- Zelig Brooks --- Benjamin Chester --- Herman Cohen --- Charles C. Cohen --- Max Cohen --- Ralph Cohen --- Simon Cohen --- Harry Dattlebaum --- Otto Dietter --- David L. Doctor --- Isidore Dropkins --- Harry Feldberg --- Samuel Finkelstein --- James Fitzpatrick --- Christopher Ford --- Harry Forman --- Abraham Friedman --- Isreal Joseph Friedman --- Robert P. Friedman --- William Friedman --- Philip Goldstein --- Jacob Goodman --- James B. Graham --- Moses Gustamolsky --- Conrad Heitman --- Samuel C. Kaplan --- Harry Keller --- Louis Krinsky --- Morris Krupnick --- Isidore Kunofsky --- Joseph Krichevesky --- Frank Levine --- Jacob Levine --- George Levy --- John Levy --- Leo Levy --- Raymond A. McIver --- Isidore L. Mackler
Right: Edward Mintz --- Charles P. Morganthaler --- David Moskowitz --- Michael Moskowitz --- Samuel Packer --- David Paskoff --- Harry Ragovin --- Philip Rapaport --- Benjamin J. Reisen --- Daniel Rigrod --- Joseph M. / Robinson --- David Rochlin --- Sidney Rosenberg --- Joseph Rosenthal --- William Rykus --- Benjamin Saltman --- Fred S. Schmeeling --- Jack Schreck --- Samuel J. Shafran --- Abraham Shapiro --- Harry Siegel --- Henry Siegel --- Jack Siegel --- Charles Smith --- Nathan Solomon --- Samuel Solovei --- Nicholas Spinazola --- Charles J. Sullivan --- Frank X. Sullivan --- Joseph Swirsky --- Louis M. Swick --- Gustave W. Thomsen --- George M. Waithauer --- James D. Wanser --- Aaron Werther --- George Weyuker --- Louis Witover --- Morris Zimmerman --- Samuel Zuckerman
“All gave some, Some gave all”
Dedicated to honoring local residents who made the “Supreme Sacrifice” in all wars of the United States. Located at the 9/11 Spirit of America Memorial
This bronze statue of a Jewish Chaplain in World War I sits on top of a large stone base that also honors later wars. The statue is itself a memorial to World War I, listing on its wheel the number of American Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Nurses who died,116,516 and the 204,092 who were wounded in that war.
As Military Chaplains serve all personnel in the command to which they are assigned, this sculpture depicts the Chaplain holding a New Testament while most likely officiating at a soldier's burial service.
This memorial was sculpted by Veterans of Foreign Wars, VFW, Post 3513 Commander Austin Deuel.
Commissioned for the Scottsdale Public Art Program
Erected by: The Tobias Bilyeu American Legion Post 710
DEDICATED TO THE BOYS FROM THIS COMMUNITY
WHO ANSWERED THEIR COUNTRY’S CALL
IN THE WORLD WAR 1917 ♢ 1918
There are two similar pictures of the monument here and when comparing both it appears that the older picture shows the monument at a different location in town. The school building behind it in the new photograph was built in 1905 and does not appear in the older photo. The dedication plaque which is placed on the ground in front of the monument in the old photo was not there when the new, color, photo was taken in August of 2018.
This is the older of the two War Memorials on the Green in front of the Mendota Museum & Historical Society building. Erected by American Legion Mendota Post № 540 in 1921 to honor the memory of seven local soldiers “…WHO MADE THE SUPREME SACRIFICE IN THE WORLD WAR 1917 ★★ 1918”. There are two plaques that are in remarkable condition at age 98, only missing 7 of the 14 decorative caps covering the bolts holding the plaques to the wall. Also the covered dark red brick community drinking fountain has been well taken care of by the community. The Memorial Monument sites directly behind the newer War Memorial Wall and 155mm Howitzer circa 1917 WW1 field artillery piece.