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Commemorative Landscapes of North Carolina
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  • Monument Name

    Veterans Memorial, Bessemer City

  • Type

    War Memorial

  • Subjects

    World War I

    World War II

    Korean War, 1950-1953

    Vietnam War, 1960-1975

    Other Wars

    Iraq War, 2003-2011

    Afghanistan War, 2001-2014

  • City

    Bessemer City

  • County

    Gaston

  • Description

    The memorial is in the shape of a tombstone with a rounded top on a single base standing four feet tall and made of granite. It has inscriptions on both sides and the American War Mothers logo appears on the front. Originally dedicated in 1956 to honor World War One, World War Two and Korean War veterans, it was re-dedicated in 1992 with additional inscriptions. Since the 1992 re-dedication, other wars have also been added. The rear inscription is thought to be the original one from 1956.

    Images: Rear view

  • Inscription

    Front: MEMORIAL / TO THOSE WHO DIED FOR PEACE / AND FREEDOM OF OUR NATION / IN WORLD WAR ONE, TWO, AND / THE KOREAN WAR, VIETNAM, / GRANADA, PANAMA, AND / DESERT STORM. / IRAQ AND AFGHANISTAN / ERECTED BY BESSEMER CITY / CHAPTER AMERICAN WAR MOTHERS / MAY 13, 1956 / RE-DEDICATED MAY 25, 1992 BY / AMERICAN LEGION POST 243

    Rear: VETERANS / WHO SERVED IN THE ARMED / FORCES OF WORLD WAR ONE, TWO, AND THE KOREAN WAR. / ERECTED BY BESSEMER CITY / CHAPTER AMERICAN WAR MOTHERS / MAY 13, 1956

  • Custodian

    Bessemer City Memorial Cemetery

  • Dedication Date

    May 13, 1956. Re-dedication: May 25, 1992

  • Decade

    1950s

  • Geographic Coordinates

    35.292780 , -81.284090 View in Geobrowsemap pin

  • Supporting Sources

      Smith, June. “Memorial Rites Sponsored By American War Mothers,” The Gastonia Gazette (Gastonia, NC), May 14, 1956

      Smith, June. “Memorial Rites To Honor Vets, Mothers,” The Gastonia Gazette (Gastonia, NC), July 25, 1957

  • Public Site

    Yes

  • Materials & Techniques

    Granite

  • Sponsors

    1956: American War Mothers. 1992: American Legion Post 243

  • Monument Dedication and Unveiling

    The 1956 ceremony was to dedicate the War Mothers Memorial Garden located at the entrance to Bessemer City Cemetery and unveil the Veterans Memorial. The Reverend Howard A. Schrum, pastor of Bingham Baptist Church, was the dedication speaker for the ceremony held on Mother’s Day. His speech honored mothers for what they had given through their sons and daughters, service to their country and by honoring the dead that they had not died in vain. “There Is No Death” was sung as the memorial was unveiled by several of the War Mothers. As the ceremony ended, the American Legion gave a three volley salute and “taps” was played. The band played softly, “The Day Is Dying In The West” as the crowd dispersed.

  • Location

    Bessemer City Memorial Cemetery is at the end of N. 13th Street. A single narrow drive leads into the cemetery. The marker is on the left near the end of the driveway in the War Mothers Memorial Garden. Across the driveway are memorials to two police officers who died in the line of duty.

  • Landscape

    The memorial is surrounded by tombstones and stands in a wooded area of the Memorial Cemetery.

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