National Purple Heart Hall of Honor


Welcome back to National Parks and other public lands with T! Remembering those who have sacrificed on this Veterans Day and thank you to all who have served!

The National Purple Heart Hall of Honor shares a building with the museum for Washington’s Cantonment at New Windsor because it is here that the military award got its start. George Washington, while stationed at his Newburgh headquarters in 1782, created The Badge of Military Merit to recognize acts of valor by common soldiers. Three soldiers from the cantonment received the badge and then it fell into disuse.


General MacArthur revived and rededicated the the award to honor George Washington on his 200th birthday. In 1932, 137 World War I veterans received the first purple heart awards in a ceremony at the New Windsor Cantonment. Today the Purple Heart is awarded to members of all branches of the military who are wounded or killed in combat.


In 2002, Senator Hillary Clinton introduced Resolution 113 to create a National Purple Heart Hall of Honor. Newburgh locals provided compelling arguments for building it in Newburgh and so it was dedicated at the Cantonment site and opened in 2006.


There is no comprehensive list of the estimated 1.8 million recipients of the Purple Heart, so part of the Hall of Honor’s mission is to collect and preserve this data. If you or a family member have received a Purple Heart, you can obtain the enrollment form from the website here.


The museum chronicles the history of the Purple Heart and towards the back of the hall, there is a small theater where you can watch a ten-minute film featuring several veterans telling their stories. Behind the theater, there are kiosks with computers to look up names in the honor roll.


To see my other posts from The Hudson Valley National Heritage Area, please click the links below:

Location: 374 Temple Hill Road, New Windsor, NY

Designation: National Heritage Area, Museum

Date designated or established: 11/30/2006

Date of my visit: 2/18/2019


20 thoughts on “National Purple Heart Hall of Honor

  1. How interesting- didn’t know this existed. Thinking of my father who is long gone, but was awarded the Purple Heart when he was wounded in WWII. Thank you for this remembrance.

    1. Thanks! If you have any of the information (is, what unit), you could make sure he is listed through their website. I had an uncle who was wounded in WWII, but I don’t think my cousins have any of the information to make sure his name is included. It’s a shame the military can’t just provide the data to the hall of honor, at least for the more recent ones

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