The United States Navy Memorial on Pennsylvania Avenue NW between 7th Street Northwest and 9th Street Northwest in Washington, D.C., honors those who have served or are currently serving in the Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, and the Merchant Marine.
For America’s sea services, The United States Navy Memorial is the triumph of a centuries-old dream. In the early days of America’s national independence, architect Pierre L’Enfant envisioned a memorial in the Nation’s Capital “to celebrate the first rise of the Navy and consecrate its progress and achievements.” But it was only in the twentieth century that L’Enfant’s vision of a Navy Memorial in Washington, D.C. was realized.
Pennsylvania Avenue, “America’s Main Street,” the boulevard that links the U.S. Capitol and White House, the scene of so many parades, pageants, and national memories, was chosen to be the location.
After President John F. Kennedy – himself a Navy war hero – inspired the redevelopment of Pennsylvania Avenue, another Navy war hero, Admiral Arleigh Burke, proclaimed in 1977 that “we have talked long enough about a Navy Memorial and it’s time we did something about it.