Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Arlington National Cemetery USA

Arlington National Cemetery, the most famous cemetery in the country, is the final resting place for many of our nation’s greatest heroes, including more than 300,000 veterans of every American conflict, from the Revolutionary War to Iraq and Afghanistan.  Since its founding in 1866, Arlington National Cemetery has provided a solemn place to reflect upon the sacrifices made by the men and women of the United States Armed Forces in the name of our country.

The cemetery property is on the former grounds of Arlington House, the mansion of George Washington Parke Custis, the adopted grandson of President George Washington, and his wife, Mary Lee Fitzhugh.  Custis selected English architect George Hadfield to design his mansion atop a hill overlooking Washington.  Custis built the house in stages, first the north wing in 1802, the south wing in 1804, and finally the central section connecting the two in 1818.  In 1831, the couple’s only child, Mary Anna Randolph Custis, married a childhood friend and distant cousin, Robert E. Lee, at Arlington House.  Mary and George Custis lived at Arlington until their deaths in 1853 and 1857, respectively, passing the property on to Mary Anna.  Although Robert E. Lee never owned the property, he and Mary Anna lived there until 1861 when Virginia seceded from the Union and Lee took command of the Virginia State Military while Mary Anna took safety elsewhere. 

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