VA -- Arlington Natl Cemetery -- Netherlands Carillon:
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ARLCAR_210307_10.JPG: Modern Liberation
The Netherlands Carillon was dedicated on May 5, 1960, on the 15th anniversary of the Netherlands' liberation from Nazi Germany. In gratitude for American aid received during and after World War II, the Dutch people rallied to support the memorial proposed by the Dutch government. This democratic cooperation reflected our two nations' solidarity behind democratic principles, especially as the Cold War grew in intensity.
Dutch architect Joost W.C. Boks designed the 127 foot tower in contrast to older European architecture that some considered to be fascist. The tower's abstract design, with its Piet Mondrian-like rectangular shapes, raised some eyebrows because it was the first modernist steel memorial associated with the otherwise classical stone architecture on the National Mall. Today the Netherlands Carillon -- in view of the Capitol Washington, Monument, and Lincoln Memorial -- stands as an exclamation point on the symbolic lines of Washington, DC.
From the People of the Netherlands to the People of the United States
ARLCAR_210307_16.JPG: Harmony of Friendship
With the gift of a carillon Queen Juliana of the Netherlands presented something truly Dutch to the American people. The fifty bells are inscribed with a verse from a poem and an emblem representing each of the Dutch provinces and different aspects of Dutch society. Describing the gift, Queen Juliana of the Netherlands said,
So many voices in our troubled world are still unheard. Let that be an incentive for all of us when we hear the bells ringing.
The Dutch royal family guard the Carillon bells in the form of two bronze lions made by Dutch sculpture Paul Philip Konig. The flower beds shaped like musical notes took root with 10,000 tulips donated by the people of the Netherlands in support of Lady Bird Johnson's beautification efforts in 1964.
Edward M. Nassor, volunteer carillon director, plays the bells with his hands on the clavier 'batons' and feet on the pedals.
In 1952, Queen Juliana of the Netherlands presented a silver bell to President Truman as a promise of the carillon.
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Wikipedia Description: Netherlands Carillon
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The Netherlands Carillon at Arlington National Cemetery was a gift from the people of the Netherlands to the people of the United States of America in 1954. The gift was made to thank the United States for its aid during and after World War II. First installed at a nearby site in 1954, the 49-bell carillon was moved to the present tower (designed by Joost Boks) in 1960. A 50th bell was added following Dutch- and American-sponsored renovations in 1995, and dedicated on May 5, the 50th anniversary of the liberation of the Netherlands.
The total weight of the bells is 28 metric tons, the largest being 5,800 kg. The bells are constructed of a bronze alloy of approximately four-fifths copper and one-fifth tin. Each bell carries an emblem signifying a group within Dutch society. The smallest bells represent the youth of the Netherlands. The verses cast on the bells were composed by the Dutch poet, Ben van Eysselsteijn.
The bell tower is an open steel structure reinforced by steel plates. It is 40 meters tall, with the glass-enclosed playing console and observatory about 25 meters from the ground. It stands on a quartzite plaza 93 feet square and is enclosed by a low lava stone wall. Two bronze lions, designed by Dutch sculptor Paul Koning, guard the plaza steps. A rectangular staircase leads to an observatory platform from which a small circular staircase winds up to the playing cabin.
Thousands of tulips are planted on the surrounding grounds. Nearby is the United States Marine Corps War Memorial. The carillion is part of the George Washington Memorial Parkway.
The Netherlands Carillon plays Westminster Chimes on the hour and plays American patriotic music twice daily. Special songs are played on May 5 (Dutch Liberation Day), July 4 (U.S. Independence Day), September 2 (V-J Day), and Thanksgiving Day. Concerts and recitals are performed on the carillon throughout the summer.
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