Located in McLean, Virginia, the Marine Corps War Memorial aims to honor and preserve the memory of the brave individuals who gave their lives in order to protect the United States since 1175. Visitors can expect to find a world-famous and well-preserved statue within the historical district of Virginia. The Marine Corps War Memorial was erected one the 179th anniversary of the United States Marine Corps in November of 195 by President Dwight D. Eisenhower.


It took nearly 3 years to construct and was built entirely out of plaster before being cast in bronze.

The statue itself was modeled after a Pulitzer prize winning photograph by Joe Rosenthal of the Associated Press. The photograph was taken in 1945 in Iwo Jima, Tokyo after more than 72-hours of bombardment on their base.

Early in the morning in an act of celebration, members of the 2nd Battalion climbed to the top of a treacherously steep mountain to display the American flag. This iconic moment brought a rush of pride and relief over their fellow soldiers as they continued to fight for an American victory. Luckily it was caught on film and is now an iconic symbol of American freedom and nationalism.

The known survivors from the photograph had their faces modeled in clay before being added to the statue. The statue weighs nearly 20 tons, is 32-feet tall and proudly flies the American flag at the top of a 60-foot pole 24 hours a day, 365 days a year in the capital city of the United States.

Plan Your Visit:

Visiting the iconic Marine Corps War Memorial Statue is an experience in and of itself, however, there is also plenty to do in the surrounding area. Whether visitors are hoping for an educational experience, historical experience, cultural experience, or simply good old-fashioned family fun, there is something for everyone here.

The War Memorial is located nearby all kinds of other famous landmarks including the National Mall, the Lincoln Memorial, the Washington Monument, and even the United States Capital Building.

Each summer, there are a variety of Marine Corps parades including the Sunset Parades which are hosted on Tuesday evenings the Memorial grounds. The grounds which house the Marine Corps War Memorial Statue are open from 6 a.m. until midnight year-round and is easily accessible by car.

Additional Information:

Marine Corps War Memorial, 700 George Washington Memorial Parkway, McLean, VA 22101, Phone: 703-289-2500

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