The Mojave Cross -- Mojave National Preserve, nr Cima CA
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Benchmark Blasterz
N 35° 18.887 W 115° 33.033
11S E 631760 N 3908915
Quick Description: The Mojave Cross was first erected in 1934 to honor all dead of all wars. In the intervening years, it has had a lot of controversy stirred up around it, been covered up, stolen, recovered, and replaced.
Location: California, United States
Date Posted: 4/1/2016 11:40:37 AM
Waymark Code: WMQVNH
Published By: Groundspeak Regular Member Manville Possum
Views: 2

Long Description:
The Mojave Cross was first erected on Sunrise Mountain in the Mojave Desert in 1934 as a memorial to all military dead of all wars.

In 1999, The Mojave Cross became the subject of an intense constitutional battle over establishment of religion that eventually went all the way to the US Supreme Court. The cross was initially declared an unconstitutional religious display on government land (2001) by a lower Federal District Court in California, which ordered the cross to be boarded up immediately, and eventually removed.

In 2002, Congress approved a land swap between the National Park Service and a local Veterans of Foreign Wars chapter, giving the VFW Sunrise Mountain (and solving the issue of the cross being on public land) in exchange for other private lands in the Mojave National Preserve.

The lawsuit continued, even tough the Government believed that with Sunrise Mountain now in private hands the cross was constitutional. Eventually, the US Supreme Court agreed.

Drama over, right? Wrong.

Shortly after the US Supreme Court ruling, the 1934 cross was stolen. It remained lost until 2012, when it was found zip-tied to a fence in Northern California. The cross is now in possession of the VFW, which is safeguarding it.

A second cross was installed in 2012. It is this cross that stands on Sunrise Mountain today.

A plaque nearby, carefully installed on the VFW-side of the fence that surrounds Sunrise Mountain, reads as follows:

"THE MOJAVE CROSS

First erected in 1934,
in honor & memory of all military dead of all wars.

Rededicated in 2012.

FOR THOSE WHO GAVE ALL"

For more, see here: (visit link) and here: (visit link) and here: (visit link)
Type of Memorial: Non-Specific Memorial

In Honor Of: All military dead of all wars

Marker Text:
THE MOJAVE CROSS First erected in 1934, in honor & memory of all military dead of all wars. Rededicated in 2012. FOR THOSE WHO GAVE ALL


Date of dedication: 11/11/2012

Who Put it Here?: Veterans of Foreign Wars

Description of Memorial:
A metal cross on Sunrise Mountain in the Mojave Desert


Wars mentioned (Multi-war only): Not listed

Visit Instructions:
Visited Logs must contain, at least, a picture of the monument and your GPSr. Preferably YOU at the monument with your GPSr, but we understand that some people are camera-shy.
It is suggested you please include something about your visit here, as well.
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Benchmark Blasterz visited The Mojave Cross -- Mojave National Preserve, nr Cima CA 3/8/2016 Benchmark Blasterz visited it