Second Division Memorial

President's Park (White House)

Second Division Memorial
Second Division Memorial

NPS / © Nathan King

Quick Facts

Location:
Washington, DC
Significance:
War Memorial
Designation:
Memorial
OPEN TO PUBLIC:
Yes

Located near the White House on the corner of 17th Street and Constitution Avenue, the Second Division Memorial was dedicated on July 18, 1936. The memorial is dedicated "To our dead" from the division's service in World War I, 1917-1919. Places where the division served in Europe are listed on the memorial: Toulon, Troyon, Fois de Belleau, Vaux, Soisson, Marbache, St. Mihiel, Blanc Mont, Meuse-Argonne, The Rhine. 

The centerpiece of the memorial is an opening blocked by a 18-foot tall, flaming, golden sword, meant to symbolize the division's defense of Paris. James Earle Fraser sculupted the sword. His other works include the Arts of Peace sculptures near the Lincoln Memorial, the design of the buffalo nickel, and perhaps his most famous work, "End of the Trail."

Following World War II and the Korean War, two wings were added to the memorial to honor the division's fallen from these conflicts. The memorial was rededicated with these additions on June 20, 1962.

Last updated: August 10, 2018