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John Paul Jones Park

Dover Patrol Monument

This text is part of Parks’ Historical Signs Project and can be found posted within the park.

Erected in 1931, and designed by Sir Aston Webb P.R.A. & Son, this monument is a 75-foot tall obelisk constructed entirely from large blocks of Westerly granite. The monument commemorates the Dover Patrol, which was formed in Britain in July 1914, around a nucleus of the 12 Tribal class destroyers.

The patrol covered the southern part of the North Sea and the eastern portion of the English Channel including the Straits of Dover. Some 2,000 members of the patrol lost their lives during World War I. A committee was formed in November 1918 to raise a public subscription for the erection of a monument in memory of the patrol. Over £45,000 was raised, including £1,000 donated by King Albert and Queen Elizabeth of Belgium. The first Dover Patrol monumental obelisk was dedicated in Dover, England in 1921.  Two additional replicas were subsequently erected, one in Calais, France, and one in New York City at the western end of Fort Hamilton, Brooklyn.

In 1961, in order to accommodate construction of the Verrazzano Narrows Bridge the monument was moved from its bluff in Fort Hamilton to John Paul Jones Park at 101st Street and Fourth Avenue. The bridge was completed in 1964. The monument now sits in the middle of a plaza set within a larger landscape park at the Verrazzano Narrows entryway to New York Harbor.  On the front of the monument, etched into the stone, is the dedication of the monument to the Dover Patrol unit while the inscription on the proper right side of the granite base is dedicated to the American Naval Forces of WWI.  On the back of the base, set within a square niche, is the inscription of the dedication date.

In 2018, shortly before the World War I armistice centennial, the monument was cleaned using a micro-abrasive system, and the masonry was repointed.

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