Historic Trenton’s Day in the Life: Trenton’s War Memorials
For Historic Trenton’s Day in the Life, we’re looking back through newspapers from the beginning and examining everyday problems, solutions, and needs during historic Trenton’s past. Today, in preparation for Memorial Day Weekend, we are looking at war memorials across the city of Trenton.
The Trenton War Memorial at 1 Memorial Drive, which has been around since 1930, was built from a fund of $922,000 raised by city residents, the City of Trenton, and County appropriations. It serves as a memorial to the residents of Mercer County who participated in World War I and World War II.
The Memorial was designed by William A. Klemman and Louis S. Kaplan. While not much is known about Klemman, Kaplan was a young architect at the time whose design was chosen during a contest before the construction of the War Memorial started. Kaplan supervised the building of the War Memorial and, after its dedication, became the leading architect in Trenton until the early 1960s. The War Memorial wasn’t added to the National Register of Historic Places until December 11, 1986.
The two-story structure was constructed with buff Indiana. The building boasts four flights of stairs that lead to a terrace with a fence around the edge. The entrance to the building is through bronze doors. There are two auditoriums, exhibit rooms, and offices for veteran organizations and other civic groups. It has been the home of countless lectures, concerts, and inaugurations of New Jersey governors.
The Trenton Battle Monument, down the road where Warren Street, North Broad Street, Brunswick, Pennington, and Princeton Avenue meet, honors George Washington and his Victory at the Battle of Trenton in the Revolutionary War. The inception of the Battle Monument began with a slight movement in the city of Trenton during 1843; the cornerstone wouldn’t be laid until 1891, on the 115th anniversary of the Battle of Trenton.
In Trenton’s East Ward, at 73 Hart Avenue sits Locust Hill Cemetery, is where at least 10 African American Veterans of the Civil War rest in peace. It is the most prominent African American Burial Ground in Trenton. Due to the neglect it has seen over the years, it has been a subject to restoration efforts brought by multiple city groups, residents, and civic leaders.
Cadwalader Park sits the Soldiers and Sailors Monument. Built-in the early 1900s, the statue honors the soldiers lost during the Civil War. According to The Historical Marker Database, “(It was), erected by the Mercer County Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument Association and funded by public subscriptions, for a total cost at the time of approximately $15,000.”
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