National memorial is a designation in the United States for a protected area that memorializes a historic person or event. National memorials are authorized by the United States Congress. The memorial need not be located on a site directly related to the subject and many, such as the Lincoln Memorial, do not have the word "national" in their titles.
There are 29 national memorials owned and administered by the National Park Service as official units. Five more are administered by other organizations but receive assistance from and are considered affiliated areas of the NPS. The earliest and perhaps most recognizable is the uniquely designated Washington Monument, which was completed in 1884 and transferred to the NPS in 1933. The most recent is the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial, dedicated in 2011. National memorials are in 14 states and the District of Columbia. Washington, D.C., has the most, 10, followed by Pennsylvania and New York, each with three. The affiliated areas are in a further three states and the Northern Mariana Islands.
Nine national memorials commemorate U.S. presidents, seven commemorate other historic figures, and four commemorate wars. As with all historic areas within the National Park System, national memorials are automatically listed on the National Register of Historic Places; however, some memorials that are affiliated areas are not listed on the Register.
Occasionally, a private organization will erect a memorial and use the word "national" in the name without Congressional authorization. They are not "National Memorials" in the sense that they have the recognition of the American people through its government. One example is the George Washington Masonic National Memorial.
|American Memorial Park||Northern Mariana Islands|||
|Red Hill Patrick Henry||Virginia|||
- List of areas in the United States National Park System
- Presidential memorials in the United States
- U.S. National Monument