History & Culture

World War II Memorial granite columns


The World War II Memorial honors the service of 16 million members of the Armed Forces of the United States of America, the support of countless millions on the home front, and the ultimate sacrifice of 405,399 Americans. On May 29, 2004, a four-day “grand reunion” of veterans on the National Mall culminated in the dedication of this tribute to the legacy of “The Greatest Generation.”

Twenty-four bronze bas-relief panels flank the ceremonial entrance. To many, these panels stir memories as they tell the story of America's experience in the war. Granite columns representing each U.S. state and territory at the time of World War II ring an impressive pool with water shooting high into the air. Quotes, references to theaters, campaigns, and battles, and two massive victory pavilions chronicle the efforts Americans undertook to win the war. A wall of 4,048 gold stars reminds all of the supreme sacrifice made by over 400,000 Americans to make that victory possible.

Visitors can also search the World War II Registry, a computerized database honoring Americans who helped win the war, either overseas or on the home front.
You may also look through our
People | Places | Stories sections to find out more about the memorial and its context in telling the story of one of the most important eras in American History.

Bas relief showing American agriculture
Memorial Design Features

A combination of bronze and granite, sculptures and bas relief all combine to pay tribute to the Greatest Generation.

Photo of architect Friedrich St. Florian

Meet the people who designed the World War II Memorial.


Explore the World War II Memorial

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    Last updated: August 14, 2023

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    1100 Ohio Drive SW
    Washington, DC 20242



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