Gettysburg Address Plaque, Salisbury National Cemetery Annex, Salisbury
Joint Manufacture and Technology Center, US Army Rock Island Arsenal in IL, Foundry
This Gettysburg Address tablet was placed to honor the bicentennial of Abraham Lincoln’s birth
in 1809. The memorial plaque is cast-iron reproduction of those placed in 1909 to honor the centennial of Lincoln’s
birthday. It is five feet tall by three feet wide with a black painted background and white
lettering. This tablet is attached to a gable top granite slap on a single granite base in front of
the cemetery annex office.
Images: View of the Salisbury National Cemetery Annex
ADDRESS BY PRESIDENT LINCOLN / AT THE DEDICATION OF / THE GETTYSBURG NATIONAL
CEMETERY / NOVEMBER 19, 1863
FOUR SCORE AND SEVEN YEARS AGO OUR / FATHERS BROUGHT FORTH ON THIS CONTINENT, / A NEW NATION CONCEIVED IN LIBERTY, AND / DEDICATED TO THE PROPOSITION THAT ALL MEN / ARE CREATED EQUAL. / NOW WE ARE ENGAGED IN A GREAT CIVIL WAR, / TESTING WHETHER THAT NATION, OR ANY NATION / SO CONCEIVED AND SO DEDICATED, CAN LONG / ENDURE. WE ARE MET ON A GREAT BATTLE-FIELD / OF THAT WAR. WE HAVE COME TO DEDICATE A / PORTION OF THAT FIELD, AS A FINAL RESTING / PLACE FOR THOSE WHO HERE GAVE THEIR LIVES / THAT THAT NATION MIGHT LIVE. IT IS ALTOGETHER / FITTING AND PROPER THAT WE SHOULD DO THIS. / BUT, IN A LARGER SENSE, WE CAN NOT DEDICATE - / WE CAN NOT CONSECRATE – WE CAN NOT HALLOW - / THIS GROUND. THE BRAVE MEN, LIVING AND DEAD, / WHO STRUGGLED HERE, HAVE CONSECRATED IT, / FAR AND ABOVE OUR POOR POWER TO ADD OR DETRACT. / THE WORLD WILL HAVE LITTLE NOTE, NOR LONG / REMEMBER WHAT WE SAY HERE, BUT IT CAN NEVER / FORGET WHAT THEY DID HERE. IT IS FOR US THE / LIVING, RATHER, TO BE DEDICATED HERE TO THE / UNFINISHED WORK WHICH THEY WHO FOUGHT / HERE HAVE THUS FAR SO NOBLY ADVANCED. IT IS / RATHER FOR US TO BE HERE DEDICATED TO THE / GREAT TASK REMAINING BEFORE US – THAT FROM / THESE HONORED DEAD WE TAKE INCREASED / DEVOTION TO THAT CAUSE FOR WHICH THEY GAVE / THE LAST FULL MEASURE OF DEVOTION – THAT / WE HERE HIGHLY RESOLVE THAT THESE DEAD / SHALL NOT HAVE DIED IN VAIN – THAT THIS / NATION, UNDER GOD, SHALL HAVE A NEW BIRTH / OF FREEDOM – AND THAT GOVERNMENT OF THE / PEOPLE, BY THE PEOPLE, FOR THE PEOPLE, SHALL / NOT PERISH FROM THE EARTH.
Salisbury National Cemetery, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
35.684160 , -80.492540 View in Geobrowse
Fullerlove, Rhys. “Historical Work Returns To Rock Island Arsenal,” United States Army, www.army.mil, (accessed August 1, 2016) Link
Powell, William S. and Beverly Tetterton. 2006. "Cemeteries, National and State," NCPEDIA, (accessed August 19, 2013) Link
“Arsenal Reproducing Cast Iron Plaques of the Gettysburg Address,” Quad-City Times (Davenport, IA), July 28, 2009, (accessed July 31, 2016) Link
“New Gettysburg Address Tablets For National Cemeteries To Honor Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial,” U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, National Cemetery Administration, http://www.cem.va.gov, (accessed December 17, 2015) Link
“Salisbury National Cemetery, Salisbury, North Carolina,” National Park Service, www.nps.gov, (accessed July 31, 2016) Link
Cast-iron painted black with white letters, granite
National Cemetery Administration, VA Historic Preservation Office
The Army began producing a standard Gettysburg Address tablet for all national cemeteries in
1909, with one made at Rock Island Arsenal in 1908 for the Rock Island National Cemetery used
as a template. National cemeteries developed after 1950 did not receive one of the tablets
and others had been lost over time.
In 2009, with funding provided through VA's Historic Preservation Office, the National Cemetery
Administration History Program coordinated the acquisition of sixty-two cast-iron tablets
containing the Gettysburg Address, the most prominent historic tablet found throughout the
125 national cemeteries. New tablets were produced at the Army's
nearby Rock Island Arsenal where the original tablets were manufactured.
Five Gettysburg Address tablets can be found at National Cemeteries in North Carolina: two in Salisbury (National Cemetery and National Cemetery Annex), New Bern, Wilmington, and Raleigh.
The memorial plaque is located in front of the cemetery administration building at 501 Statesville Blvd. on the grounds of the Veterans Administration Hospital. Nearby is a “Bivouac of the Dead” plaque.
The memorial stand on the front lawn, facing the Salisbury National Cemetery-Annex.