Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Welcome to the Historical Marker Database

 

Public history cast in metal, carved on stone, or embedded in resin

 
Marker of the Week
The Battle of Matewan Matewan, West Virginia

The Battle of Matewan marker imageThis week in 1920, the West Virginia Mine Wars were in high gear. A gunfight ensued on a train in the town of Matewan leaving 10 dead. The Mine Wars (or Coal Wars) were fought between mining companies, their employers, local law enforcement and federal agencies over mining companies and mine workers attempting to unionize. There are still scars in the town from the battle, including bullet holes in the old National Bank building in town. Conflicting accounts of the event persist, adding complexity to its historical narrative. However, in 1921, the United Mine Workers gained recognition, and the West Virginia Mine Wars generally concluded. Editor J.J. Prats of Powell, Ohio filed this entry in 2021.
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Take a Tour of the Database

Click on the star button in the menu above. Repeat. Every time you click, you will be shown a different entry at random.

More Than 212 Thousand!

HMdb MARKER COUNT
212551

Hundreds added monthly. ...▼

The latest entry was published only 18 minutes ago.
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Historical Marker Facts

These counts are as of last night and also include war memorials.

How many historical markers are there in the United States? We’ve found 196,116 so far. Adding more daily.

What state has the most historical markers? We’ve found the most in Texas.   New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and California round out the top five.

How many historical markers are there in Canada? We’ve found 4,538 so far. We’re always looking for more.


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Tag Pages to Create Lists

When you are signed in, you will see these small buttons on marker pages and search results. Click on them to tag that marker. Return to the My Markers page to see what you've tagged and to create lists, maps, and spreadsheets.

To get started, click on My Markers to sign in. First time users can register from there. Tag and map your next weekend outing!

History Happened Here
National and global events all happened some­where, and historical markers mark
Frontiersman, soldier, writer, astronaut
Frontiersman, Soldier,
Writer, Astronaut
the place where many occurred. But the richness of history is in its local details, details that can be insignificant on the global stage: the home of an in­di­vi­dual who made a dif­fe­rence; a natural feature, building, byway; or just some­thing in­te­res­ting that happened nearby. History is not just about the high and mighty.
 
Markers tell stories and point out facts. There is one at the site the northernmost battle of the U.S. Civil War and another at the southernmost point in the United States (can you guess where?). There is one next to a 17th century Japanese stone lantern symbolizing 20th century peace, and another one less than 20 miles away reminding us of the Nike missile sites that were built the same year the lantern was dedicated. They tell of battles,
Generals Captured in their union suits, literaly!
Generals Captured in their
Union Suits, Literally!
massacres and hangings; of hu­ma­ni­ta­rians, educators, and a beloved stagecoach horse; of mountains, lakes, rivers, bridges, roads, and other natural and man-made wonders.
 
There are countless thousands of great stories marked by markers—and some boring ones too. Some markers simply recite facts while others are insightful, obscure, cryptic, patriotic, fas­ci­na­ting, sad, funny, or just downright bizarre. Many of those markers are on these pages, others are waiting for you to discover and add them to this database.
 
So hit the road and experience history first-hand yourself. History happened nearby.
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Suggestions? Problems?

We want to hear from you. Send a note to the editors.

Are You A Collector?

Do you collect historical markers? Would you like to start? If you’re a collector, or want to get started,
Clara Barton marker
Clara Barton,
Steamboat Gothic Aficionado
consider uploading your discoveries to this site. Even if someone else beat you to the submission, you can still add a fresh photo, better directions, or some additional insight into the subject described. What do you get in return? We’ll credit each submission by publishing your name and town on that page, unless, of course, you wish to remain anonymous.

You can add markers yourself. It's easy! Check marker submission guidelines, then click Add A Marker to get started. Adding photos, links and commentary is just as easy: go the marker's page and click on the links at the top or bottom of the page.
HMdb.org Cards
3½" x 2" wallet cards are available.
Image of HMdb.org wallet card
We’ll mail contributors a dozen or more at no charge. Simply send a note to the editor with a mailing address and state how many you would like. Sign one and put it in your wallet to show you are a contributor to HMdb.org. It might come in handy when someone asks you what you’re doing next to a government installation with a camera. Hand the rest out to friends and curious bystanders. Your note will be discarded after the envelope is addressed.
Keep An Eye on Those Markers
Get a list of markers near where you live and work and image showing marker pole without a marker keep an eye out for them when you're out on the road. You would be surprised how many disappear in the course of a year.

To report a missing marker, use the “Correct This Page” link on the marker’s page and scroll down to the “Is Marker Missing?” section. A photo of the stump, hole in the ground, or place where the marker was is necessary for proof. Also, please take a few minutes and inform your local historical society.
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Or use buttons at the bottom of each marker page to recommend individual markers.

Middle School History Project

Teachers! Are you looking for a history project idea that will actively involve your students and their parents? Take a look at this historical marker passport project used by teachers in the Wilson NY School District for 7th and 8th grade students. Download the customizable two-page Microsoft Word document by clicking here.

Attention Historical Societies

Do we have entries for all of the historical markers in your area? Here is a suggestion for an article for your next newsletter that may get your membership to help fill in the gaps.
 
NOTICE
Do you have some history that you want to publish on the Internet? HMdb.org can provide static hosting space at HistoryArchives.org at no charge. What you want to publish does not have to be related to a historical marker. For more information, contact an editor.
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May. 19, 2024