War Memorial Tower, Rockville

War Memorial Tower, RockvilleA granite tower in the Rockville section of Vernon honors local veterans of all wars.

The War Memorial Tower, in Rockville’s Henry Park, stands at the summit of Fox Hill. The tower site includes a large plaza with a dedication plaque reading, “Memorial to the Veterans of Our Wars. Constructed by Works Progress Administration. Sponsored by the City of Rockville and the Town of Vernon, Connecticut, 1939.”

Plaques on the tower’s base honor veterans of the Army, Navy and Marine Corps, and bear the symbols of those service branches. We’re guessing the alcoves underneath the plaques once held markers listing local veterans, but could find no reference to when the plaques may have been removed.

War Memorial Tower, RockvilleThe tower was designed by architect Walter B. Chambers, whose works include two buildings on Yale’s Old Campus and a number of New York City buildings, and was modeled after a 1,500-year-old tower in France.

The site offers nice views of downtown Rockville and, on a clear day, as far as Mount Tom and Mount Holyoke. In the center foreground of our picture of the view, you can see Rockville’s 1890 Memorial Building, which was dedicated to honor local Civil War veterans.

Henry Park was donated to Vernon by E. Stevens Henry, a businessman and politician who served as mayor of Rockville, and was also elected to several state offices and the U.S. Congress.

War Memorial Tower, Rockville

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

War Memorial Tower, Rockville

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

War Memorial Tower, Rockville

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

War Memorial Tower, Rockville

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

War Memorial Tower, Rockville

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

War Memorial Tower, Rockville

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

War Memorial Tower, Rockville

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

War Memorial Tower, Rockville

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

War Memorial Tower, Rockville

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Memorial Building, Rockville

Memorial Building, RockvilleVernon honors its veterans with a memorial hall and several monuments in the heart of its Rockville section.

Construction began for Memorial Hall in 1889, and the building was finished a year later. The building originally contained a meeting hall for the local Grand Army of the Republic chapter, a courtroom and municipal offices.

Today, the former GAR meeting space is largely occupied by the New England Civil War Museum (which we’ll highlight in a future post), and the building continues to host municipal offices and a legislative chamber.

The brownstone and brick building, on Park Street, features a number of large arched windows and ornamental details.

Memorial Building, RockvilleThe west side of the Memorial Building, for example, includes large stained glass windows on the second floor. The windows are topped on the exterior with brownstone insets displaying an eagle flanked by the Connecticut and United States shields.

The southeast corner features a tower topped by a turret with large windows and copper ornamentation at its peak.

A smaller United States shield can be seen near the archway over the building’s front entrance.

A plaque in the building’s lobby commemorates Rockville native Gene Pitney, a singer and songwriter who was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2002.

 

Central Park

Immediately across Park Street from the Memorial Building, a collection of monuments honor Vernon’s veterans of the World Wars, Korea and Vietnam.

Memorial Building, RockvilleThe central monument bears an inscription reading, “Dedicated to the honor and memory of the men and women of the Town of Vernon who so gallantly served their country in World Wars.”

To the west of the World War memorial, a monument honors Vernon residents who served in Vietnam. The granite monument bears the names  of seven residents who died in the war.

To the east, a monument honors Vernon’s Korean War veterans, and commemorates one resident killed during the conflict.

At the eastern end of the park, a fountain honors William T. Cogswell, a 19th century builder who published a history of Rockville in 1872. The memorial is a 2005 copy of a fountain erected in 1883 by Cogwell’s cousin, a San Francisco dentist, investor and ardent temperance advocate.

Veterans Memorials, RockvilleThe San Francisco Cogswell erected at least nine fountains in different cities depicting himself, and inscriptions on the base advocated temperance.

Within two years of its dedication, the Rockville fountain had been stolen and dumped in a local lake. The fountain was recovered, stolen and recovered again before being donated to a World War II scrap metal drive.

 

 

 

Veterans Memorials, Rockville

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Veterans Memorials, Rockville

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Veterans Memorials, Rockville

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Veterans Memorials, Rockville

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Veterans Memorials, Rockville