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Indiana Soldiers and Sailors Monument Named National Landmark

Photo by toddtaulman / Thinkstock.

WASHINGTON, D.C.-- The Indiana Soldiers and Sailors Monument is now a national landmark.

U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewel named the monument, as well as the West Union Covered Bridge in Parke County, to the list of landmarks on Wednesday.

According to the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, the National Historic Landmark program "recognizes 'the best of the best' properties that provide insight to our national heritage". The monument was previously included as an expansion of the Indiana World War Memorials Historic District, but now has its own designation.

The story of the Indiana Soldiers and Sailors Monument began in 1887, when the Indiana General Assembly passed a bill to build a soldiers' and sailors' monument or memorial. That same year, the Board of Monument Commissioners held a design competition for a Civil War Memorial and selected German designer Bruno Schmitz.

The monument, dedicated in 1902, stands 284.5 feet tall. At the time it was built, it was the second-tallest monument in the country. Only the Washington Monument, at 555 feet, was taller. The monument remains the largest Civil War memorial in the country.

The Indiana Soldiers and Sailors Monument continues to has shape the history, image and design of Indianapolis, and for that, has more than earned its new designation as a National Historic Landmark.

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