History & Culture

From 1950 to 1953 the United States joined with United Nations forces in Korea to take a stand against what was deemed a threat to democratic nations worldwide. At war's end, a million and a half American veterans returned to a peacetime world of families, homes and jobs - and to a country reluctant to view the Korean War as something to memorialize. But to the men and women who served, the Korean War could never be a forgotten war.

The passing of four decades had brought a new perspective to the war and its aftermath. The time had come, in the eyes of the nation, to set aside a place of remembrance for the people who served in this hard-fought war half a world away. The Korean War Veterans Memorial honors those Americans who worked and fought under the most trying of circumstances, and those who gave their lives for the cause of freedom.
 
Line drawing of part of the Korean War Veterans Memorial

The Design Process

Mired in controversy, the design of the Korean War Veterans Memorial was ultimately the work of several different architects.

Infantrymen fighting in the Korean War

Features of the Memorial

Learn about the design elements of the Korean War Veterans Memorial and how they honor those who served in the "Forgotten War."

Last updated: July 26, 2022

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