Memorial Blvd: A Park Most Traveled & Less Visited

On any given day people go about their lives driving through The Memorial Boulevard Park.

Some are going to work.

Some are going home.

Others think it’s quicker to drive through it instead of Riverside Ave. or South Street.

Some even think it’s a highway based on the speed they are going.

What most of these people don’t do is get out and see all the monuments.

The actual official name is Veterans’ Memorial Park and Boulevard.

John Griffith, a Vietnam War and US Army MP Veteran describes the park as. “Veterans’ Memorial Park is a 25 acre Veterans’ Park, is one of the largest American wars tributes in the Nation. On Armistice Day November 11, 1921, the City of Bristol officially dedicated this section of roadway The Memorial Boulevard. On the Boulevard, the first memorial erected was the World War I Monument dedicated on April 19, 1924, to honor World War I veterans.

Through the years in conjunction with the Veteran’s Society, US Military and the city’s old West Cemetery next to the Veteran’s Park and Boulevard has erected 18 monuments dedicated in memory to veterans lost in America’s conflicts. In addition to the World War I Monument, there are memorials to honor the Revolutionary War, Spanish-American War, World War II, Korean War, Vietnam War, Persian Gulf War and the new Civil War Monument unveiled on May 28, 2011.

The Boulevard which is lined with 25 oak trees on each side, also includes a National Guard Memorial, gardens with service dedication bronze plaques, stones, a time capsule and a Tribute Walkway with thousands of bricks listing veterans names. The Boulevard is closed to traffic several times each year for public holiday ceremonies and Veterans’ Park was the site of the traveling Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall in August 1998.”

A large portion of the park was given in 1921 by Albert Rockwell along with school property; the remainder was purchased.

The Memorial Boulevard is for vehicles bearing passenger-type plates only. Vehicles with commercial or combination plates are not allowed on the boulevard. However, many do not obey by or they just didn’t see the signs.

With limited parking and no pedestrian cross walk on the Eastern portion of the Park (which contains the bulk of the monuments) many people just drive through not knowing what they are missing.

Here are photos of all the monuments in the Park.

4 comments on “Memorial Blvd: A Park Most Traveled & Less Visited

  1. Bill Stortz

    Here is another example of a Bristol jewel, a Bristol attraction.
    Not promoted by our marketing people
    Would have been great for te Little Leaguers to visit it with their parents, family

    Oh Well, maybe someday!

  2. Anna B.

    After living in town approximately 8yrs,this year was the first time I walked the whole park in increments. Parking isn’t readily visible. It was a walk to remember those who sacrificed so much. Having brighter lighting and perhaps having a bigger, and better marked parking area more folks can enjoy the walk, flowers, and of course pay respect. Thank You for your service Vets!

  3. Michael Belanger

    My father and uncle (both deceased) have bricks on the walkway there.