Yorktown in York County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
—Colonial National Historical Park —
“Resolved, That … Congress … will cause to be erected at York, in Virginia, a marble column, adorned with emblems of the alliance between the United States and his Most Christian Majesty; and inscribed with a succinct narrative of the surrender of Earl Cornwallis to his excellency General George Washington … to his excellency the Count de Rochambeau … and his excellency the Count de Grasse ….” Journals of Congress, October 29, 1781
Just 10 days after the victory at Yorktown, the Continental Congress directed a monument be built to commemorate the siege and the American-French alliance. However, funds were not legislated for its construction until 1880, as the continental anniversary of the battle approached.
A congressional committee of legislators from the original 13 colonies delegated oversight of the project to the Secretary of War, who in turn, chose architects, Richard M. Hunt and Henry Van Brunt, and sculptor John Quincy Adams Ward to design the new monument. The country’s spirit of reconciliation in the aftermath of the Civil War affected the design, as evidenced by the inscription, “One Country, One Constitution, One Destiny” on the monument’s shaft.
On October 18, 1881, the cornerstone for the monument was dedicated during events commemorating the 100th anniversary
Erected by Colonial National Historical Park, National Park Service.
Location. 37° 13.972′ N, 76° 30.3′ W. Marker is in Yorktown, Virginia, in York County. Marker is on Main Street, on the right when traveling north. Click for map. Marker is in this post office area: Yorktown VA 23690, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Yorktown (within shouting distance of this marker); Yorktown Victory Monument (within shouting distance of this marker); Monument to the Alliance and Victory (within shouting distance of this marker); Tobacco Road (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Home of Thomas Nelson (about 500 feet away); a different marker also named Yorktown (about 600 feet away); Dudley Digges House, circa 1760 (about 600 feet away); Yorke Village (about 700 feet away). Click for a list of all markers in Yorktown.
More about this marker. The marker contains several photographs. The largest is of the Yorktown Centennial Ceremonies and has the caption, “President Chester Arthur was present for the cornerstone laying ceremony. The monument was completed three years later in 1884.”
The right of the marker contains two photos, one of the monument
Also see . . .
1. Yorktown Battlefield, Yorktown Victory Monument. National Park Service. (Submitted on August 23, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.)
2. The Battle of Yorktown 1781. A British perspective of the Battle of Yorktown from BritishBattles.com. (Submitted on August 23, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.)
Categories. • Notable Events • War, US Revolutionary •
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 911 times since then. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page was last revised on November 30, 2016.