Crawford County has multiple markers and monuments commemorating American war veterans who have died for those who wish to honor them this Memorial Day.
There are four memorials honoring veterans of foreign wars, according to Historical Marker Database, Waymarking.com and local historian Sheila Bell. Three are on the Crawford County Courthouse lawn.
One of the most recent is the Crawford County Vietnam Memorial, erected by the county in 1987 to remember those who served and were killed in action in the Vietnam War.
On the courthouse lawn at the intersection of Main Street and South 4th Street, the Vietnam memorial is a large, vertical monument and made of dark granite. The design at the top of the monument features three soldiers grouped together.
Also on the memorial are listed the 17 names of Crawford County soldiers who died in the Vietnam War.
Directly behind the Vietnam monument facing the courthouse is a World War I memorial. The granite monument is a replacement of the original, erected by Col. Samuel Randolph Chew on Nov. 3, 1917.
Chew, a well-known lawyer in Van Buren and Fort Smith who was commissioned in the Arkansas State Militia, dedicated the memorial to the first three U.S. soldiers to die in WWI - Merle D. Hay, Thomas Enwright and James B. Gresham.
A description of what happened to the three men honored on the memorial and information on the men themselves can be found at Militarian.com.
According to the Encyclopedia of Arkansas History and Culture, 22 men from Crawford County died in WWI.
Also on the courthouse lawn at the intersection of South Fourth and Webster streets is the Crawford County War Memorial, which honors all soldiers from Crawford County who have fought in wars up to WWI.
Erected in 1937 by the Arkansas Division of United Daughters of the Confederacy, the granite memorial also honors the “women who did their part in these wars.”
Named on the memorial is Clara B. Eno, a local woman who was instrumental in preserving the history of the county.
Veterans Memorial Park in Van Buren holds a memorial to all veterans of foreign wars, and specifically names WWI and World War II, and the Korean and Vietnam wars.
Land for the park was acquired by the Urban Renewal Agency of Van Buren in 1972 and the original park was dedicated in 1975.
There also are a number of markers and memorials to the Civil War - also called the War Between the States. Many are located in downtown Van Buren at or near the courthouse, and at Fairview Cemetery in Van Buren.