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What is the oldest war memorial in the United States of America?

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The American Revolutionary War played a critical role in helping unite the original fourteen settlements to found a new country. The first skirmish with Great Britain during the American Revolutionary War was at the Battle of Lexington, Massachusetts, on 19 April 1775 where local colonists faced British Regulars. The remains of the eight fallen were moved in 1835 from their common grave in the Old Burying Ground and reinterred within the railing in front a monument erected at the Lexington Battle Green. This is America's first monument of the Revolution and is also their country's oldest war memorial and public monument: a pyramidal column erected on 4 July 1799 by the inhabitants of Lexington to the memory of the Minutemen and "Fellow Citizens … Who fell on this field, the first Victims to the Sword of British Tyranny & Oppression". Since then, there have been more than two hundred memorials and monuments erected throughout the U.S. honouring those who fought in the Revolutionary War.

On this day, 4 July 2021, we mark the 222nd anniversary of the erection of America's first war memorial in Lexington, Massachusetts.

André M. Levesque

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