About the Memorial
The New York State Purple Heart Memorial was dedicated by Governor George E. Pataki on August 6, 2004. The red granite monument was donated to the state by the Military Order of the Purple Heart to honor those New Yorkers who were awarded the medal for the service and sacrifice they made to maintain America’s freedom and liberty. The memorial is located on Madison Avenue near the Cultural Education Center.
The Purple Heart is the oldest military decoration in the world in current use. Created by General George Washington in 1782, it is awarded to members of the United States Armed Forces who are wounded by an instrument of war in the hands of the enemy, or posthumously to the next of kin in the name of those who are killed in action or die of wounds received in action. It is specifically a combat decoration, and was the first U.S. decoration to be awarded for the personal suffering of the common soldier. Nearly two million Americans have received the Purple Heart.