Pittsford War Memorial
This is a war memorial found in Pittsford, New York along the Erie Canal by Schoen Place. The memorial says, “In Honor of All Pittsford Veterans.” This memorial is located near a popular spot along the Erie canal (which can just be seen in the background of the illustration) in downtown Pittsford. The parades in Pittsford march down Main Street, on which the park is located. Unfortunately, I have not attend any parades during Memorial Day, Veteran’s Day, or Independence Day, so I cannot comment as to whether the parades or related activities include this park.
As the illustration shows, the wars commemorated on this memorial are:
- World War I
- World War II
- Korean War
- Vietnam War
- Iraq War
- American Revolutionary War
- War of 1812
- American Civil War
- Gulf War
All of this goes to illustrate what Hess (2007) notes, “The process of commemoration, simply by what is or is not commemorated, is inherently ideological in its formation. Browne concludes, ‘As contested, public memory represents a site of competition, of voices strategically or tactically claiming access to the past’ (1993: 475).”
These wars are the ones Pittsford is laying claim to and honoring.
Therefore I am wondering if that means that our town has only lost people in five wars? There were no casualties in any other war? If so, we are fortunate. Or does it mean that the people in Pittsford who worked to put this memorial up determined that those who died in these wars, or these wars beginning with WWI, are those who will get honored and memorialized?
It’s also notable that there is space left on this war memorial to (unfortunately) allow more names to be added of those from Pittsford who will give their lives in service to our county. But again, this begs the questions of 1) is it only certain wars where those from Pittsford die get memorialized or, 2) is it any war where someone from Pittsford dies get memorialized.