Quantico National Cemetery in Prince William County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
Purple Heart Memorial
Military Order of the Purple Heart
1782 • 1932
Marker series. This marker is included in the Military Order of the Purple Heart marker series.
Location. 38° 32.509′ N, 77° 21.664′ W. Marker is in Quantico National Cemetery, Virginia, in Prince William County. Marker is on Quantico Drive. Touch for map. This marker is on the Quantico National Cemetery Memorial Trail, located near the center of the cemetery grounds. Marker is in this post office area: Triangle VA 22172, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Sixth Marine Division (here, next to this marker); First Marine Division Association Memorial (a few steps from this marker); a different marker also named Purple Heart Memorial (within shouting distance of this marker); Commonwealth of Virginia Memorial (within shouting distance of this marker); U.S. Servicemen and Women Held Prisoner by Terrorists Memorial (within shouting distance of this marker); Edson's Raiders (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); The ‘Striking Sixth’ Memorial (about 400 feet away); Fourth Marine Division Association Memorial (about 400 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Quantico National Cemetery.
More about this marker. This marker
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. To better understand the relationship, study each marker in the order shown.
1. The significance of 1782 and 1932
In 1782, General George Washington created the Badge of Military Merit decoration, the forerunner of the modern day Purple Heart. The Purple Heart is the oldest military decoration in the world still in use. General Washington's keen appreciation of the importance of the common soldier impelled in him the desire to recognize outstanding valor and merit. Due to funding constraints by the Continental Congress, there was little he could do to reward the individual soldier. Deprived of any means to reward, he searched for a substitute, resulting in hime writing General Orders of August 7, 1782, which read in part:
"The General, ever desirous to cherish virtuous ambition in his soldiers as well as foster and encourage every species of military merit, directs that whenever any singularly meritorious action is performed, the author of it shall be permitted to wear on his facings,
The order further states: "Men who have merited this distinction to be suffered to pass all guards and sentinels which officers are permitted to do. The order to be retroactive to the earliest stages of the war, and to be a permanent one."
Washington ended his order with: "The road to glory in a patriot army and a free country is thus open to all."
This order, lost for almost 150 years, came to light during a search for Washington's papers prior to celebrating his bicentennial. The U.S. War Department announced the new award in General Order No. 3 on February 22, 1932: "By order of the President of the United States, the Purple Heart established by General George Washington during the War of the Revolution, is hereby revived out of respect to his memory and military achievements."
— Submitted November 13, 2007, by Kevin W. of Stafford, Virginia.
Categories. • Military •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on November 13, 2007, by Kevin W. of Stafford, Virginia. This page has been viewed 1,070 times since then and 14 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on November 13, 2007, by Kevin W. of Stafford, Virginia.