The Bladensburg WWI Memorial Peace Cross was dedicated in 1925 to honor 49 men from Prince George County, Maryland, who fought and died for our country during World WAr I. The memorial was funded by local residents and The American Legion.
The property is currently owned by the Maryland National Capital Park and Planning Commission.
The Bladensburg WWI Memorial Peace Cross was recently listed on the National Register of Historic Places during a nomination meeting that occurred at the Prince George’s County Historic Preservation Committee meeting on April 21. However, there is a pending lawsuit to have the memorial removed.
In 2014, The American Humanist Association (AHA) and three individuals filed a lawsuit requesting that the Bladensburg WWI Memorial Peace Cross be removed due to its religious nature as a Christian symbol while infringing on their First Amendment rights, on government property owned by the state of Maryland.
The sponsorship of the memorial is Renee Louise Green who was raised in Prince George’s County, Maryland, and graduated from Elizabeth Seton High School in Bladensburg, Maryland. For the past year, Renee Green has made continual efforts in preserving the Bladensburg WWI Memorial Peace Cross.
In the Prince George’s Gazette’s article "Woman fights to save Bladensburg Peace Cross," she is quoted as saying, “In order for people to really make a decision, they had to know the history. They have to understand it,” Green said. “It’s a World War I memorial dedicated to 49 men who paid the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. It represents peace.”
The Bladensburg WWI Memorial Peace Cross was listed as a Historic Place, but not on the National Register of Historic Places. There have been multiple applications for memorial to be considered for the National Register to no avail.
Green, successfully, resubmitted an application in January 2015 for the Bladensburg WWI Memorial Peace Cross to be nominated to the National Register with assistance from Peter Kurtz and Nancy Kurtz from the Maryland Historic Trust resulting in its acceptance.
However, while the Bladensburg WWI Memorial Peace Cross is now on the National Register of Historic Places, the lawsuit from the American Humanist Association to have it removed or destroyed will continue.