The National World War I Museum and Memorial - Kansas City, Missouri
The National World War I Museum and Memorial in Kansas City, Missouri is America’s only museum dedicated to sharing the stories of the Great War through the eyes of those who lived it.
Previously known as the Liberty Memorial, it was officially recognized by Congress as the National World War I Museum and Memorial in 2014, and contains one of the most diverse collections of WWI artifacts in the world.
Located on the north wall of the Memorial, The Great Frieze was sculpted by World War I veteran Edmond Amateis in 1935. The large bas-relief frieze – 18 feet tall by 148 feet long – is rich in symbolism. It depicts the end of the war and the creation of an era of greater peace and amity, sadly an era that would prove to be elusive with the start of World War II.
Inside Memory Hall, you will also find what remains of the Panthéon de la Guerre.
Painted in Paris as the Great War raged, the Panthéon de la Guerre was originally a massive circular panorama described as the largest oil painting in the world. 45 feet tall with a circumference of 402 feet, it depicted thousands of prominent wartime figures from all Allied nations.
Neglected after a post-war U.S. tour, the Panthéon was stored outdoors and left to degrade until it was bought at auction in 1952 by William Haussner, a German WWI veteran who had become a successful Baltimore restaurateur. In 1957, Kansas City artist Daniel MacMorris persuaded Haussner to donate the panorama to the Memorial.
Though the storage conditions had destroyed sections of the painting, fragments of the Panthéon were rearranged and reworked by MacMorris and this newly configured composition was installed in Memory Hall, where it remains today.
All content: National WWI Museum and Memorial.
Made possible in part by the generous support of the William T. Kemper Foundation, the Regnier Family Foundation, Courtney S. Turner Charitable Trust and Bank of America, N.A., Co-Trustees.