Documenting the American South

Commemorative Landscapes of North Carolina
Commemorative Landscapes of North Carolina
Commemorative Landscapes banner
  • Monument Name

    War Memorial Fountain, Sylva

  • Type


  • Subjects

    World War I

    World War II

    Vietnam War, 1960-1975

    Korean War, 1950-1953

  • City


  • County


  • Description

    The memorial is a round in-ground fountain. Granite forms the fountain’s bowl which has three working sprays and lighting. A brick walkway surrounds the fountain. In front of the walk is a low half-circle granite wall which holds a dedication plaque. Behind the fountain is a curved granite retaining wall several feet high with a broad opening for the long stairway that leads up a hill to the historic Jackson County Courthouse. This fountain was partially constructed in 1920 to honor World War One veterans and never finished although the memorial plaque was placed at that time. After World War Two the American Legion Auxiliary raised funds to compete the project in honor of veterans to both World Wars. Later a small plaque to the memory of Korean and Vietnam veterans was set into the walk a few inches in front of the fountain.

    Images: Plaques | View from the steps leading to the front entrance of the old Jackson County Courthouse building | View with the Jackson County Veterans Memorial

  • Inscription



  • Custodian

    Jackson County

  • Dedication Date

    November 11, 1949

  • Decade


  • Geographic Coordinates

    35.373810 , -83.227100 View in Geobrowsemap pin

  • Supporting Sources

      "Illuminated Fountain at foot of Jackson County Court House, Sylva, N.C." in North Carolina Postcard Collection (P052), North Carolina Collection Photographic Archives, Wilson Library, UNC-Chapel Hill Link

      “Historic Courthouse Images.” The Sylva Herald, (accessed February 10, 2015) Link

      “Jackson County Court House, Sylva, N.C.,” in Durwood Barbour Collection of North Carolina Postcards (P077), North Carolina Collection Photographic Archives, Wilson Library, UNC-Chapel Hill Link

      “Jackson Fountain to Be Dedicated,” Asheville Citizen-Times (Asheville, NC), November 6, 1949

      “Memorial Fountain Nearing Completion,” The Sylva Herald (Sylva, NC), November 3, 1949

      “Memorial Fountain to Be Dedicated November 11,” The Sylva Herald (Sylva, NC), July 16, 1949

      “Memorial Services, Talks Mark Armistice Day in WNC,” Asheville Citizen-Times (Asheville, NC), November 12, 1949

      “World War I Memorial to Be Rebuilt by Legion Auxiliary,” The Sylva Herald (Sylva, NC), March 3, 1949

  • Public Site


  • Materials & Techniques

    Granite, brick

  • Sponsors

    American Legion Auxiliary

  • Monument Cost


  • Monument Dedication and Unveiling

    U.S. Representative Monroe Redden of Hendersonville was the featured speaker. He declared that “a good American spirit would ward off possible aggressors in the future.” Mrs. Lawrence Cordell, President of the American Legion Auxiliary also spoke during the ceremony. Rev. W.Q. Grigg, pastor of Sylva Methodist Church and a Navy Chaplin during World War II gave the invocation. The dedication was part of Jackson County’s Armistice (Veterans) Day services that also included a parade. Representatives of the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars also laid wreaths at the base of the Confederate Monument up the hill from the fountain.

  • Location

    The fountain is located at the bottom of the steps leading to the front entrance of the old Jackson County Courthouse building which is now the town’s public library. The steps begin at the intersection of W. Main St. and Keener St., Sylva, NC. To the right of the staircase at the retaining wall is Jackson County Veterans Memorial. Halfway up the impressive staircase is the Jackson County Confederate Soldiers Monument. The Founding of Jackson County and Time Capsule marker and the Jackson County Armed Forces Memorial stand right to the left corner of the old Jackson County Courthouse building.

  • Landscape

    The historic courthouse building with its impressive staircase serves as a striking backdrop for the War Memorial Fountain and the Jackson County Veterans Memorial. Surrounding mountains add to the scenery.

Icon for reporting missing/incorrect information Know anything else about this monument that isn't mentioned here? If you have additional information on this or any other monument in our collection fill out the form at the Contact Us link in the footer. Thank you.