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Cemetery and Columbarium

The Cemetery's First Monuments

This section would hit on early monuments (pre WWII).  In particular, Taylor, Vera Cruz, Jeanette, and USS Huron monuments.  In addition, Cushing, Zimmerman, Neumann.

From decorated admirals to mess stewards to blacksmiths to infants, the Cemetery and Columbarium hold the remains of a diverse array of individuals. Their lives tell the history of the US Navy and the Naval Academy.


The USS Huron, an iron sloop-rigged steamer, was wrecked in a storm near Nag's Head, North Carolina, on November 24, 1877. Modest-sized markers for the graves of individual men surround a larger monument commemorating the Huron tragedy. Section 5


The Jeannette Monument was erected in memory of the men who perished in the Jeannette Arctic Expedition in October 1881. Its design is based on a cairn that a recovery crew built to mark the remains of the explorers in the arctic. The plaque on the monument reads: Commemorative of the heroic officers and men of the United States Navy who perished in the Jeannette Arctic Exploring Expedition. 1881. The ice on the cross is a reminder of the frigid environment in which they were lost. This is the largest monument at the Cemetery. Section 2


According to his gravestone, Thomas Taylor drowned in 1852 while serving on the USS Preble, a sloop-of-war. The USS Preble was the first training ship used by midshipmen at the Naval Academy. Section 6

Vera Cruz Monument

One of the oldest monuments in the Cemetery, this crudely carved monument memorializes the Americans who died in the Battle of Vera Cruz during the Mexican War. The inscription, written in Spanish, translates to: To the memory of the Americans who died in this fortress [in] the year 1847. This monument is one of a select few at the Cemetery with an inscription in a foreign language. Section 2


In October 1864, Union Commander William B. Cushing (1842-1874) NA 1861 led a crew that attacked and sank the Confederate ironclad CSS Albemarle. His monument is topped by an elaborate relief that depicts drapery, a service dress hat, and a sword. Section 7

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