National World War I Memorial had over one million visitors in 2023

Published: 23 January 2024

By Doughboy Foundation Staff

Daily Taps framed

The Daily Taps Ceremony at the National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC pays tribute to all who have served in the armed forces of the United States, and to those who perished in World War I, "the war that changed the world." Visitors to the National World War I Memorial pause every day at 5:00 pm Eastern as Taps sounds in honor of our nation’s heroes. Daily Taps is provided by the Doughboy Foundation.

Continued visitor growth expected in 2024 leading up to sculpture installation later in year

According to statistics provided by the National Park Service, over one million people visited the National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC in 2023.  This is a nearly 30% increase in visitors over 2022, the Memorial’s first full calendar year being open to the public after opening ceremonies that took place on April 16, 2021.

While open to the public now, the Memorial still awaits installation of the monumental bronze “A Soldier’s Story” sculpture to be installed later this year.  Once the sculpture is in place, the Memorial is expected to attract many more visitors to the nation’s capitol to view what will be the largest free-standing high-relief bronze sculpture in the western hemisphere.

“These numbers will presumably grow even more quickly later this year when the sculpture, ‘A Soldier’s Journey‘ is installed,” said Daniel S. Dayton, Executive Director of the U.S. World War I Centennial Commission. “It will serve as a very powerful way for us to remember those of our countrymen who served their nation when she called.

“We remember a soldier in this sculpture just the way we honor a soldier every night at the WWI Memorial with the sounding of taps.”

Every day at 5:00 pm Eastern, Taps sounds at the National World War I Memorial in honor of our nation’s heroes. The Daily Taps Ceremony pays tribute to all who have served in the armed forces of the United States, and those who perished in “the war that changed the world.”

The final section of the sculpture in clay was completed by sculptor Sabin Howard this month, and has been shipped to the foundry in the United Kingdom to be cast into bronze. In four parts, the sculpture will be returned to the U.S. this summer, and will be installed, welded into one solid piece, and given its final patina before being presented to the public as part of the completed National World War I Memorial.

Recently the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) did an in-depth feature on the status of the sculpture, currently being worked on at Pangolin Foundry in Stroud, Gloucestershire, UK.

Howard was interviewed recently for a podcast recently by a Washington, DC non-profit organization on his vision of the sculpture, and the process of creating it.

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