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Soldiers and Sailors World War Memorial Building:

Neat building that is still actively being used by the military, so not a huge amount of displays to see, but got pictures of what there is.

During the 1919 legislative session, Robert Schaber of Hudson introduced legislation to permit the construction of a memorial building to the Soldiers and Sailors of World War 1. The site was donated by the Northwestern Railway Company and the building was completed in 1931, at a cost of $92,000. The Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Building housed the state museum until 1989 when the displays were moved to the recently built Cultural Heritage Center. The Department of Military and Veterans Affairs moved into the building in1990. The Memorial Building was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1983. It was formerly known as the Robinson Museum. The building is constructed of steel and has sandstone facing. The front of the building has an impressive entry pediment with dentil molding and 6 ionic columns, as well as individual pediments over each of the doors.

Broken Column

Ancient civilizations used columns or pillars to signify princes or nobles, as if they were pillars of state. The use of the column or pillar as a monument erected over a tomb was an ancient custom that was a significant symbol of character and spirit of the person interred. This broken column is symbolic of the patriotism and devotion of our fallen heroes, immortalized in John McCrea's poem, "In Flander's Fields." The torches on the 1/2 column represent the lives of the servicemen and women.


Other noteworthy features of the building are a number of shields carved into the walls and displaying the unit emblems of the 32nd, 34th, 41st and 8 9th Army divisions of World War l to which the South Dakota 147th Field Artillery Regiment was assigned during World War l. South Dakota National Guard units including the 109th Quartermaster Regiment, 109th Engineer Regiment, 136th Engineer Battalion and the 34th Signal Company were units of the 34th Division during World War ll.

Hall of Flags

In the rotunda, you will find flags depicting the branches of the military and various veteran organizations.

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