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A brief history about the war memorial to accompany my WWII Memorial stock photos
- The Freedom Wall is located at the western edge of the National World War Two Memorial, the gently curved granite wall has 4,000
stainless steel gold plated stars adorned to it's surface, each star commemorating 100 American deaths in the Second World War (over 400,000 in total).
- In front (below) of the Freedom Wall is a stone inscribed with the words, "Here We Mark The Price Of Freedom" which is a significant
part of the Freedom Wall (Field of Stars) because when an American went off to fight, their family would often display a blue star on a white field with red border in the window. If the family
received one of those dreaded telegrams informing them of a death of family member, they would replace a blue star with a "gold" star, which would reveal the family's sacrifice.
Atlantic & Pacific Pavilions
- The Atlantic Pavilion stands at the northern edge of the National World War II Memorial & the Pacific Pavilion stands at the
southern edge, both pavilions are constructed from Kershaw granite from South Carolina.
- In the Second World War, the U.S Armed Forces fought in two military theatres of operations on opposite sides of the globe. Navy ships
made their way across the Atlantic transporting Army and Marine personnel to fight in North Africa & Europe against the Germans & Italians. Army, Navy & marine units also fought a
campaign across the Pacific against the Japanese.
- The two victory pavilions honour their service.
- The two forty-three foot victory pavilions hold up a bronze sculptural canopy called a "Baldacchino" inside.
- The Baldacchinos consist of four eagles holding a laurel victory wreath suspended above a victory medallion set in to the granite floor
- The eagle is the symbol of the United States of America and the laurel wreath is a symbol of victory going back to Ancient
- The sculptures symbolise the American victory in both the Atlantic and Pacific theatres of war.
Vertical Granite Pillars (State and territoty pillars)
- The names of the 56 U.S. states, territories & District of Columbia are inscribed on the granite pillars which circle around the
perimeter of the National World War Two Memorial in two semi-ellipses, right and left of the Freedom Wall (Field of Stars).
- The names of were the state and territory name is included alternates between right and left of the Field of Stars, based of when the
entered the Union.
- Delaware was the first state to ratify the U.S Constitution, followed by Pennsylvania.
- On each of the granite pillars are two wreaths (front and back), a wheat wreath and an oak wreath.
- The Wheat wreath represents agriculture and the oak wreath represents industry.
- Both wreaths symbolise the hard work, sacrifice and support on the home front, essential in the success of the war
Bas-relief sculptural panels
- Twenty-four bronze bas-relief panels are set into the balustrades of the northern and southern ceremonial walls at the 17th Street
entrance to the National World War Two Memorial.
- The panels were designed by Ray Kaskey, with twelve scenes from the home front & Pacific Theatre on the south wall (walk) and twelve
scenes from the home front & Atlantic Theatre on the north wall (walk).