The Liberty Memorial | Attraction Guides | History Hit

The Liberty Memorial

Kansas City, Missouri, United States

Lucy Davidson

24 Mar 2021
Image Credit: Shuttershock

About The Liberty Memorial

The Liberty Memorial is a US national World War I monument in Kansas City, Missouri. The Memorial is also home to the National World War I Museum, which is home to one of the biggest World War One memorabilia collections in the world, and hosts a regular programme of events and lectures.

History of The Liberty Memorial 

Shortly after the First World War ended, Kansas City leaders formed the Liberty Memorial Association (LMA) to create a monument to commemorate men and women who had died during the war.

Over a 10-day period in 1919, a staggering $2.5 million – equivalent to more than $35 million today – was raised towards the costs of the memorial. The result is an elegant and classical Egyptian Revival-style sculpture that was dedicated by President Calvin Coolidge in front of more than 150,000 people.

The structure proved to be a striking addition to Kansas City’s architecture and cultural offering, but deteriorated over time and was thus closed in 1994 after concerns were raised about its structural safety. However, $102 million was raised for its restoration and expansion, with a new National World War I Museum being opened in 2006 that was designated by Congress as the nation’s official World War I museum.

Today, the Museum and Memorial is a non-profit organisation that aims to maintain the Liberty Memorial, educate the public about World War I through its programme of exhibitions, and preserve historical materials and artefacts so that many more generations can learn about the horrors of war.

The Liberty Memorial Today

The National WWI Museum and Memorial prides itself on being the USA’s only museum dedicated to sharing the stories of the Great War through sharing the testimonies of those who lived through it.

The museum is filled with immersive displays, films, and testimonies alongside one of the largest collections of WWI artefacts in the world.

There is also a regular schedule of events that cover everything from a WWI-style knitting group, lectures from esteemed academics which discuss the social, cultural, and economic implications of war, and an annual National Poetry Month.

Getting to The Liberty Memorial

The Museum is open from 10am-5pm from Tuesday to Sunday. From the centre of Kansas City, the Museum and Memorial are a 6 minute drive along Grand Boulevard. it is reachable in 25 minutes via the STRC, MMAX, 47, 403, 404, 519, 563, and 569 buses which leave from the centre of the city every 15 minutes. Equally, it is a 35 minute walk from the centre of the city.

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