The National Cemetery Administration honors veterans with a final resting place and lasting memorials that commemorate their service to our Nation.
History and Development of the National Cemetery Administration
From the earliest times, those who died in defense of their people or nation have been deemed worthy of special commemoration of their service on the field of battle. In the United States, development of national cemeteries came about during the Civil War.
Early in the conflict, the War Department recognized the need to establish procedures for making and preserving records of deceased soldiers and their places of burial. War Department General Orders No. 75 of September 11, 1861, delegated to commanding officers of military corps and departments responsibility for the burial of officers and soldiers who died within their jurisdiction and directed that, in performance of this duty, they would properly execute the regulations and forms provided by the Quartermaster General for this purpose. The Quartermaster General was also directed to provide means for a registered headboard to be placed at the head of each soldier's grave.
Subsequent to the issuance of War Department General Orders No. 75, the 37th Congress passed legislation that led to initial establishment of what was to become a network of national cemeteries across the United States. President Lincoln approved an omnibus act containing legislation on a variety of subjects on July 17, 1862. Section 18 of the act provided: "That the President of the United States shall have power, whenever in his opinion it shall be expedient, to purchase cemetery grounds and cause them to be securely enclosed, to be used as a national cemetery for the soldiers who shall die in the service of the country."
The following cemeteries were established in the year 1862
Alexandria National Cemetery, Alexandria, VA
Annapolis National Cemetery, Annapolis, MD.
Antietam National Cemetery, Sharpsburg, MD (originally established by the state)
Camp Butler National Cemetery, Springfield, IL
Cypress Hills National Cemetery, Brooklyn, NY
Danville National Cemetery, Danville, KY
Fort Leavenworth National Cemetery, Ft. Leavenworth, KS
Fort Scott National Cemetery, Fort Scott, KS
Keokuk National Cemetery, Keokuk, IA
Loudon Park National Cemetery, Baltimore, MD
Mill Springs National Cemetery, Nancy, KY
New Albany National Cemetery, New Albany, IN
Philadelphia National Cemetery, Philadelphia, PA
Soldiers' Home National Cemetery, Washington, DC
History of Burial and Memorial Benefits