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Amiel Weeks Whipple was a military officer and topographical engineer in the early 1800s. Whipple was instrumental in the survey of the boundary between the United States and Mexico. He led an expedition with 70 men in selecting the best route to build the transcontinental railroad. After the Civil War broke out, Whipple served as Commander for the Nascent Balloon Reconnaissance Unit, making a balloon ascent over the Confederate area. His topographical expertise assisted many soldiers who used his maps during this battle. In 1863, he was an Army Brigadier General, fighting in the Battle of Fredericksburg, VA, and was severely wounded. President Lincoln promoted him to Major General just before Whipple died from his injuries and was buried in New Hampshire.

In 1908, a tall pillar was established for Amiel Whipple, and other Civil War Veteran’s which reads: “In memory of the heroes of (1861-1965) Civil War who lie in unknown graves on southern battle fields. Sleep on brave boys though your graves are unmarked, you are not forgotten.” This memorial pillar was placed the middle of the cemetery with many unmarked tombstones. It is unknown if Whipple had connections to Nebraska for this memorial, or if the county dedicated this in honor of his remarkable contributions while in the military.

A white and grey etched, granite pillar, memorializes the deceased men and women of all wars. It displays an oversized bullet casing pointed toward the sky. Two black pillars stand honoring those who served from the county during WWII and Veterans from Nebraska who served, died or are still missing. Another individual memorial honors 28 Hall County men who made the ultimate sacrifice during WWI. Just behind this is a pedestal with a plane’s propeller. Also displayed is a Lockheed T-33A Shooting Star turbojet. The T-33 was one of the world’s best renowned aircraft and more jet pilots trained on the T-33’s than any other aircraft. The last of these was retired in 1987 and many remain on display at museums and memorials.

Currently plans are underway to build memorials in Grand Island for the Veterans of the Gulf War, as well as wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and other conflicts.


Stone Group Architects (SGA) is a proud supporter of our Veterans and Military Memorials. While we are strong supporters, SGA is independent from the memorials and does not claim responsibility of building or funding these memorials. SGA is a verified Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small business (SDVOSB) architectural firm, providing planning and design services to a variety of government clients.

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