The World War II Memorial

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DC Trip 2023

Washington, DC possesses the largest concentration of National Park Service units of any metropolitan area. I decided to use one of my long weekends in April to visit DC and check a few units off my list. I toured several memorials, monuments and other sites, including World War II Memorial.

The National Mall

The National Mall stretches from the Capitol to the Potomac River. It serves as “America’s Front Lawn” and its premiere civic and symbolic space. Originally in the L’Enfant plan for the city, the National Mall and Memorial Parks unit of the NPS protects iconic monuments and memorials and over 1,000 acres of greenspace. From the Washington Monument, I moved on to the nearby World War II Memorial

WWII Memorialt

The World War II Memorial is dedicated to Americans who served in the armed forces and as civilians during World War II. It sits between the Washington Monument and the Lincoln Memorial on the National Mall. This location generated some controversy by interrupting the line of sight between Washington and Lincoln.

A Triumphal Arch stands at either side of the plaza, one for the Pacific Theater and one for the Atlantic. Pillars for each of the 56 states and territories line the perimeter. A fountain bubbles in the center of it all.

The Freedom Wall, on the west side of the memorial, displays 4048 stars. Each star represents 100 Americans killed in the war, the heavy price of freedom.

Designers “hid” two Kilroy Was Here engravings in the memorial. The first time I visited, I didn’t know about them. This time I forgot to look for them. When soldiers found that mark during World War II, it signified the presence and protection of other American troops.

2023 DC Trip Posts

Location: 1750 Independence Ave SW, Washington, DC
Designation: National Memorial
Date designated/established: April 29, 2004
Date of my visit: April 6, 2023

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