Andy Clayden 2016

Department of Landscape, University of Sheffield, UK

The design of American Military Cemeteries of the Second World War

At the end of the Second World War the next of kin of American service men and woman who had been killed during the conflict, had a choice to either have the body repatriated or for the remains to be permanently interred in one of 14 Military Cemeteries and Memorials that would be created by the American Battle and Monuments Commission (ABMC). This paper draws on the memoirs of Major General Thomas North who in 1946 was appointed by General Eisenhower as Secretary of the ABMC with responsibility of overseeing the development of these new military cemeteries.  North’s memoir provides a fascinating insight into how the different cemetery sites were selected, the specific requirements of the design brief and how each design team would be chosen to include the most eminent designers and artists of the time. The paper goes onto explore in more detail the design and implementation of the Cambridge American Cemetery at Madingley that was formally dedicated in 1956.  It draws on an archive that includes original drawings, photographs and correspondence between members of the design team and staff at the ABMC and site visits and interviews with ABMC staff.


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