Talk:Tomb of the Unknown Soldier (Arlington)/Archive 1

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Archive 1 Archive 2

factual accuracy

Removing the following per the information in this link:

In the fall of 2003, Hurricane Isabel moved through the Washington, DC area. The winds were so strong that trees were knocked down. Although the guards were, for the first time ever, given permission to abandon their post, they refused, and continued to walk the mat despite the storm. --ZekeMacNeil 01:23, 30 Mar 2005 (UTC)

It says here:

It was erroneously reported that during Hurricane Isabel, the Sentinels were ordered to abandon their posts for shelter and that they refused. *No such order was ever given.* All proper precautions were taken to ensure the safety of the Sentinels while accomplishing their mission. Risk assessments are constantly conducted by the Chain of Command during changing conditions to ensure that soldier welfare is maintained during mission accomplishment.

Article should be updated.

It has been done. Taco325i 19:49, 18 August 2005 (UTC)

Wait a minute, the article said that they were given permission not ordered to leave their posts. The website Taco linked to neither confirmed nor denied the rumor that permission was given. That's the story I'd heard, that they were given permission to leave but chose not to. -- Hurricane Eric - my dropsonde - archive 23:16, 9 November 2005 (UTC)
As a matter of fact, I was informed of this rumor by the Arlington guides on the tour of the site. If it's an official story of the tour, which I would assume would be pre-approved (if not scripted entirely) by government officials, that gives some credibility to the rumor. You are correct - giving permission is not the same thing as issuing an order.

I was the 543rd person to earn the Tomb Guard Badge, and served there for 15 months. Guards were never given permission to leave their post. Provisions were made, that if the storm got bad enough, they would "extend" the limits of the guards' post to inside the building directly west of the tomb, and the guards would watch through windows during their shift. The storm never got that bad, and the guards were never given, nor did they ever need, permission to "abandon" their post. I know of no internet page to cite this with, only my personal knowledge of the even (which is significant) and the personal account of Tom Sherlock (head historian for Arlington Cemetery). 543 03:55, 13 November 2007 (UTC)

Reverted edits recently

I have recently reverted a few edits from User: The reason that I have changed them back is because the changed made the title Tomb of the Unknown Soldier Which is a completely seperate article due to the fact that other nations aside from the US have such tombs for unknown soldiers. I have however kept some info from on of these edits regarding the duty, which is the last paragraph of the article. -- Malo 16:21, 21 October 2005 (UTC)

I nearly did the same thing, except that you got there first and the edit conflict engine didn't tell me. Also, are you sure about the 'haircut and shaving twice per day' thing? - mholland 16:24, 21 October 2005 (UTC)
I'm not 100% about the shave and haircut, however I have seen these soldiers in person and they are extremely well groomed. I have also seen a documentary on the guard duty of the tomb, and it doesn't seem unreasonable, to me, considering the hours and hours they spend preparing. I'm still searching for verifiable facts, but no links just yet. -- Malo 16:36, 21 October 2005 (UTC)
Well I found one about haircuts here however no word on shaving just yet. -- Malo 16:46, 21 October 2005 (UTC)

haircuts are required every other work day. guards must be clean shaven at all times - for me that meant at least twice a day, most people got away with only once though. again, my only reference is 15 months of doing it. 543 03:57, 13 November 2007 (UTC)

Sentinals' uniform care

I am wondering about the section about the sentinals maticulous care about their uniform as I have read I had thought that was an urban legend

Some of that email that went around was urban legend, some of it was accurate. The website designed by present and former guards explains which are which. The meticulous care of their uniforms and their appearance is true. The bit about not talking for six months (and you can see that, right? Guy scribbling madly on his little chalkboard to talk to his wife at the dinner table)? Not so true. --ScreaminEagle 16:46, 12 December 2006 (UTC)


What battle is this? Rmhermen 16:41, 1 May 2006 (UTC)

Oisiu-Eiseu: What a bad joke. It isn't the only problem with "Ardenne, Belleauwood, Chateau-Terrie, Meusse-Argonne, Oisiu-Eiseu and Sommes.". Battle of the Somme, no "s", it's a river(la Somme), in 1916, US Army arrived in France summer 1917...Battle of the Ardennes, an "s" here, mountains' chain(Les Ardennes), and not a WWI battle but WWII... Only someone from "The Old Guard"(US Army) could write such horrors: it has been in their manuals of history for years. Those small faulty "historical details" are just some of the numerous tags inserted into "The Old Guard" manuals, books, symbols, uniforms, ceremonies and so on: for proof that they are not guarding anything and are honorless. This whole article is infected since many sources comes from the "The Old Guard". I won't work on that article: They are sensed being the historical authority concerning the Tomb, they are also in charge to protect, rather than playing the "Oisiu-Eisue", ;).--Tagsforlife 23:24, 7 November 2007 (UTC)

I disagree..the Battle of Ardennes was in August of 1914, one of the first of WWI[1]. also, i thought wikipedia encouraged constructive edits....nothing you said was constructive, please be constructive. 543 04:21, 13 November 2007 (UTC)

Tomb Guard close up photo

Besides the image I put on the front page, here's a close up that might be useful or not.~ (The Rebel At) ~ 15:33, 10 August 2006 (UTC)

close up of Tomb Guard

9/11 remains

I've heard, and until I read this site beleived, that an unknown 9/11 victim had recently been placed in the Tomb. If this is not true, can anyone say how this urban legend got started--Dudeman5685 08:00, 14 September 2006 (UTC)

Well, definitly not true. I have never heard of this urban legend.~ Rorndoff 15:08, 15 September 2006 (UTC)

This might be it: a propsed monument to 9/11 in the national mall was modeled after the Tomb of the Unknowns --Dudeman5685 20:04, 15 September 2006 (UTC)

Rank Insigniae

The article says:

> The sentinels do not wear rank insignia on their uniforms, so they do not outrank the Unknowns, whatever their rank may have been.

This image shows such a guard, with a SSGT (E-6) insignia on his left sleeve:

Unknown Guard with Rank.jpg.

I don't think sourcing this will help, we'll probably have to just cut it.
--Baylink 20:53, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

The Sergeant is not a sentinal, but the "Assistant Relief Commander", as the caption says. The two sentinals (new and old) holding the rifles, are wearing no chevrons, as are the sentinals in all of the other photos. I have been there, if you go inside the building, you will see a sentinal uniform on display where is tells about the the sentinal's uniform and explains about the absence of rank insignia. --rogerd 00:35, 17 October 2006 (UTC)

The six wreaths

I removed the following:

Chateau-Thierry, the Ardennes, Oisiu-Eisue, Meuse-Argonne, Belleau Wood, and the Somme

as there's no such battle as "Oisiu-Eisue", but don't want to only list five of the six. Please don't return this sentence until the six battles have been verified and referenced. Dan100 (Talk) 12:35, 25 October 2006 (UTC)

According to my WW I Chronology there has been a battle near the channel from Oise to Aisne (channel as referenced here: Aisne_River ) which was fought during the 1917 Spring Offensive... Must be a veritable missspelling even when going after sound, but it's the closest hit i could find... -- 23:15, 24 December 2006 (UTC)


"The guards are the only ones in the armed services who are issued sunglasses, due to the bright reflection from the marble surrounding the tomb and the ampitheater."

I'm fairly certain Army Rangers are issued Oakley sunglasses. Also if we do decide to keep this it should mention they are the only one issued to the US armed services. --BHC 09:10, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

"Wiley-X Lobo Saber Slate Lens Sunglasses standard issue to US Navy Seals, FBI, Army Rangers, 100% UV protection, 2.5mm ballistic polycarbonate lens, adjustable rubber tipped saber temple, rubber nosepiece. Sunglasses Wiley-X Sunglasses ...." from this site, Oakley sunglasses are "Elite Special Forces Standard Issue" from this site, and this site claims this of the Wiley-X Modular Tactical Goggles:

"SeriesWiley X has been supplying ballistic sunglasses and tactical goggles for our nation’s finest fighting forces for over 17 years. Wiley X worked closely with military and federal law enforcement agencies in designing these ballistic sunglasses & tactical goggles, then Wiley X made changes according to the feed back obtained from these elite forces. Currently Wiley X protective eyewear is standard issue for the Army Rangers, 160th SOAR, 82nd ABN, 101st ABN, Army Special Forces Groups, Navy SEALs, Air Force Special Operation Squadron's, Marine Corp E.O.D., F.B.I. and D.E.A., just to name a few."

I had also heard that they were the only ones officially issued sunglasses, but that may have been just once upon a time. It would certainly seem that is not the case anymore. It can still be stated that they are among the few US forces issued sunglasses, or they are the only non-combat US forces issued sunglasses for their duties, or whathaveyou. --ScreaminEagle 18:54, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

they are for sure the only unit authorized to wear sunglasses in the dress blue uniform. 543 04:03, 13 November 2007 (UTC)

Recent edits about the uniform

An unidentified editor (an Army officer supposedly?) took out claims that the uniforms take up to 8 hours to prepare and are of solid wool because his friends told him otherwise, etc. This is not an acceptable reason for altering the text. From the Tomb Sentinels' website: "It takes the average Sentinel 8 hours to prep his/her uniform for the next work day." From the page specifically on uniforms, also from the Society of the Honor Guard's website: "Summer Uniform: The current uniform used by the Guards is the standard issue Army Dress Blue uniform. It is made of 100% wool. The uniform consists of a blouse, trousers, service cap, and white shirt w/ black tie. Winter Uniform: The winter uniform used is also 100% wool and consists of an overcoat, white scarf, trousers, service or cold weather cap, and white shirt w/ black tie." I have replaced the text that was removed. --ScreaminEagle 20:47, 27 February 2007 (UTC)


The Boy Scouts of America presented the Silver Buffalo Award, their highest award, to the Unknown Soldier in 1928.[2] --Gadget850 ( Ed) 19:23, 7 May 2007 (UTC)

"Guarding" the tomb?

Since the job title of the guard suggests that he (or in three instances, she) must "guard" the tomb, does this mean that if anyone attempts to get close to the tomb or cause harm to it they would stop their steps and shoot the person? It's a highly ridiculous situation, but are the guards trained to actually do anything if the sanctity of the tomb is compromised, or is the position merely symbolic? In other words, to what extent does the term "guard" actually apply to the the tomb guard? Jaredt  14:16, 29 May 2007 (UTC)

Yes, they do protect the tomb to the point of confronting people who cross over the ropes, etc. They take the responsibility of protecting the tomb very seriously (and there's a reason their guns are inspected before every shift, you know?). Do you think they're just going to stand by and whine about it if someone rushes past them and starts climbing the tomb? They're going to do something about it, guaranteed. Whether or not they actually shoot you is up to you, I suppose. :) --ScreaminEagle 22:54, 29 May 2007 (UTC)
Well, yeah, I figured as much, but has it ever happened? I mean, do they just break off mid-stride if they feel that the tomb is being invaded? It just seems like one of those things that you would never expect to happen, so I was just wondering the whether there were orders to protect the tomb to that extent. Jaredt  23:02, 29 May 2007 (UTC)
Yes, absolutely they will protect the tomb to that extent. That's their entire purpose for being there. If there were never the chance of someone disrespecting the tomb in any way, they wouldn't be there. The Walk would never supercede the sentinel's primary purpose for being there, which is to protect; if it needs protecting, they'll stop everything and do it. Their own website talks about tourists and kids who cross the line and are terrified when the sentinels confront them. So obviously, it's happened, but the offenders probably didn't do so with malicious intent and the guards know that, meaning I'd be surprised if they got a rifle butt to the face. However, that doesn't stop them from performing their duty, though.
While the need to do so is very rare, the Sentinels can and do interrupt their ritual to challenge the occasional visitor who attempts to enter the plaza or who disrespects the site by talking loudly or lounging in the viewing areas. Challenging a threat on the Tomb and then returning to the Walk is itself ritualized (though again, very rare) and utilizes whatever force is necessary - in all cases, a commanding and authoritative presence and booming order was enough to send trespassers scurrying. For the record, the Sentinel's rifle is unloaded - which really isn't a secret as it's cleared during the inspection of the guard - but it is functional, it has a fixed bayonet, and its not impossible (though exceedingly unlikely) the Sentinel carries a magazine. Any threat on the Tomb that can't be prevented by vocal challenge will be immediately met by MPs or other military personnel who are ready at a moment's notice to assist the Sentinel in securing the site and arrest trespassers. (talk) 18:11, 24 June 2010 (UTC)
If you would like to ask them yourself, you can always email the webmaster of the tomb guard's webpage, who is a former tomb sentinel himself. I've asked him many questions and he's always happy to answer. Be sure and tell us what he says, as it's always interesting. --ScreaminEagle 23:55, 29 May 2007 (UTC)

sorry to burst your bubble guys, but the webmaster of the website is a "Her" not a "Him." She is always willing to answer questions, and if she does not get back to you quickly I am also willing to do the same. I served at the Tomb for 15 months and am an active member in the Tomb Guard Society (the group that keeps up the website, among other things). 543 04:05, 13 November 2007 (UTC)

I distinctly remember reading (or hearing) a news report some years ago tha an officer of the honor guard literally used his sword on some guy trying to deface the tomb. But I can't locate any cite to confirm what I remenber. Its nice to know those professionals aren't just there for show.

The tomb may be replaced

Officials at Arlington National Cemetary are considering replacing the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier with a new replica. I didn't see this mentioned in the article but it is an important piece of information and should be added. →Wordbuilder 00:44, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

Come up with a reliable source and you can. --ScreaminEagle 12:15, 13 September 2007 (UTC)
There's the catch. The information is from an email from the National Trust for Historic Preservation. I am unable to find the announcement on their website. I know non-web sources such as books and magazines can be used but does the same hold true for emails? →Wordbuilder 13:46, 13 September 2007 (UTC)
Sounds doubtful. It could very well be a ploy to get people all worked up over nothing (fund raiser?), rather than actual fact. Until it's published published, I refuse to believe something so ridiculous. So I would let it go until you can find actual proof beyond an email. --ScreaminEagle 22:35, 13 September 2007 (UTC)
It actually wasn't a fundraising email. It was a political action push (contact your senators; contact the superintendent of Arlington). Anyway, I'll keep looking and see what I can turn up. →Wordbuilder 02:47, 14 September 2007 (UTC)

They have the article on their website now. Since it's under the advocacy section and doesn't give any detail as to where they are getting their facts, I'm not sure it qualifies as a proper source. →Wordbuilder 02:57, 14 September 2007 (UTC)

Hm. I found that last night as well, but I couldn't find anywhere else that mentioned it or that didn't use that particular aricle as its source. I think it would behoove us to write to the foundation directly and ask them how they found out about this and then move from there (but according to their article the decision will be reached on the 30th, so we should move quickly. I vote for you. :) ).--ScreaminEagle 18:17, 14 September 2007 (UTC)
I found this instead, which is ANC's official document on the entire issue, including the exact problem, proposed solutions to the problem, the history of the Tomb and how it classifies as a national historic landmark, etc. After reading the entire thing, it is evidently clear that the information found on National Trust's website is exceedingly POV. To use it as a reference would be particularly unwise. The damage to the Tomb far exceeds what readers are led to believe given their description of the issue. I would say it is indeed a good thing to add this information, but only the information found in the official ANC's document as it appears that they have honestly tried to be as unbiased about the situation as possible, exploring every option available to them rather than only those that suit their purported interests. If you would like to write the addition, by all means. I can also write it, but my time is limited so it may take a little while to get to it.
Excellent catch, by the way. I had no idea this was an ongoing issue and the way that website talked about it, it seemed an overly asinine solution to a tiny problem. After getting all the facts, I can see what the problems are; very good to know. Props to you, my friend. --ScreaminEagle 19:07, 14 September 2007 (UTC)
Thank you. Good find on your part as well. I'll add the info to the article. How much space do you think it warrants? →Wordbuilder 19:19, 14 September 2007 (UTC)
Well, as stupid as it sounds, as much space as it needs to tell the whole story. I don't think there needs to be a space restriction on this, particularly since it deals absolutely directly with the article topic, as opposed to some issue that only has some themes in common. This information directly affects the subject and should be given ample enough space to make clear exactly what's going on with it as it affects the Tomb's listed history directly. First I would talk about the physical condition that the Tomb is in, pointing out the unexplained verticle cracks, as well as the inherent horizontal cracks that were likely there when the stone was quarried and have gotten worse through cleaning and weather erosion effects, etc. I would list what options the Cemetery is considering and what impact each would probably have according to their expertise. I don't think there's any need to go into depth about it being a historical landmark and thus needing the public's opinion, etc. (who cares?), but I would rely heavily on the scientific research they already performed to reach their analysis of the situation, always making sure to point out that it is ANC's researchers itself who came up with it, and not absolute, indisputable fact (they're just giving their best guess as to the future of the Tomb, too, right?). I certainly wouldn't go into as much depth as ANC has in that document, but I would summarize the applicable and pertinent sections to use for your text. Or at least that's what I would do. --ScreaminEagle 19:31, 14 September 2007 (UTC)

Persons who have lain in state or honor

Why are all these succession boxes spread throughout the article? --— Gadget850 (Ed) talk - 02:39, 7 February 2008 (UTC)

They are in the sections of the soldiers who have lain in state and who laid in state before and after each one. --ScreaminEagle (talk) 17:39, 21 July 2008 (UTC)

45 minute rotation ceremony

Isn't there a longer, 45 minute rotation ceremony every 4 hours or so? Rates a mention, though I can't find anything. (talk) 02:26, 11 June 2008 (UTC)

From the Tomb Guards website:
How often are the Guards changed?
The Guard is changed every thirty minutes during the summer (April 1 to Sep 30) and every hour during the winter (Oct 1 to Mar 31). During the hours the cemetery is closed, the guard is changed every 2 hours. The Tomb is guarded, and has been guarded, every minute of every day since 1937.--ScreaminEagle (talk) 17:49, 21 July 2008 (UTC)


Will there ever be a replacement for the unknown soldier of the Vietnam War? Is there any talk of a replacement? DNA testing has obviously helped a great deal in identifying otherwise unidentifiable remains and therefore it's unlikely that there will be any unknown soldiers from any war in the future. However, I think it's highly unlikely that all the unknowns from Vietnam will be identified. And of course, those who died deserve the honor. This seems to me to be the horns of a dilemma and I think it's worth discussing. It also is worth mentioning that unknown soldiers from America's wars prior to WWI should probably also be so enshrined. That seems to me to be less problematic. -- HurricaneERIC - Class of '08: XVII Maius MMVIII 04:45, 21 July 2008 (UTC)

Worth discussion, but not here. This is not the place where decisions are made, only facts reported. No, there will never be a replacement for the Vietnam War veteran, as has been explained by Arlington on several occasions. --ScreaminEagle (talk) 17:32, 21 July 2008 (UTC)

crossing the fench

should there be an artical on what happens if one does get near the Unknowns? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:22, 28 January 2009 (UTC)

An entire article on that? Why? The Tomb sentinals themselves say that from time to time little kids have crossed the line and they've scared the crap out of them and their parents when the guards confront them. The guards put you in your place and warn you to get back. That's pretty much it. I don't think they're going to shoot you unless you attack them. You really think we need an entire aricle on that? What for? --ScreaminEagle (talk) 01:11, 29 January 2009 (UTC)
Warrants a mention in -this- article. With cites, of course. Lots42 (talk) 14:32, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

for dumb shits who think they are better than everyone else.... —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:19, 29 January 2009 (UTC)

You're thinking that happens a lot then? I'd think the ropes at the Tomb itself would be warning enough for them. --ScreaminEagle (talk) 18:31, 29 January 2009 (UTC)

No article is needed for that. It's barely significant enough for inclusion in the present article. →Wordbuilder (talk) 19:25, 29 January 2009 (UTC)

All US military guard posts have general and special orders. perhaps the special orders at this post could be included? for example, i know they are allowed to use any force short of deadly force to protect the government property within their post. - Adam (former guard) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Adamnemon (talkcontribs) 06:09, 18 December 2011 (UTC)

When was the name changed to Tomb of the Unknows?

I thought the name change from Tomb of the Unknown Soldier was changed officially to Tomb of the Unknowns? In your article on the history of the tomb, it says that it was never officially changed? Who is right? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:24, 17 May 2009 (UTC)

The way I read the article, it was never official named but is referred to as the Tomb of the Unknowns or the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. See the article's 14th source; the U.S. Army used "Tomb of the Unknowns" in the title of a recent official report. →Wordbuilder (talk) 16:44, 18 May 2009 (UTC)

I think the author should clarify the whole issue of the name in a section dedicated to the name change. I grew up with the name "Tomb of the Unknown Soldier", then I think it was referred to as the "Tomb of the Unknown Soldiers", now I hear the term, "Tomb of the Unknowns" which seems like someone was very PC oriented within the military or government. Does someone have some specific information with dates etc.Trucker11 (talk) 20:11, 26 May 2009 (UTC)

Well, to be fair the changes in name over time make perfect sense. Originally it was only one soldier buried there, and then there were more added later. And then they probably realized that not everyone buried there was technically a soldier (could have been from any of the services really) so to call them all soldiers automatically would have been inaccurate at the very least. Tomb of the Unknowns makes the most sense given who it's actually referring. --ScreaminEagle (talk) 12:55, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

Although it is probably okay from a copyright POV

it seems to me that too much of the text about the selection of the bodies to be interred at the tomb is taken verbatim from an Arlington web site. I am busy working on the architect and sculptor of this monument, but it seems tha wikipedia should be more than just a cut-&-paste from other web sites. Carptrash (talk) 17:10, 18 January 2010 (UTC)

Michael Blassie & Sampley

I've reverted an edit in which this article [3] from the Washington Post contended that Ted Sampley "investigated" and discovered the correct identification of the Vietnam Unknown. As per the Michael Blassie article, it looks like there was plenty of info on hand with the Pentagon about Blassie possibly being the Unknown. Likewise, the Wash Post obit [4] talks about Sampley doing an analysis, but it is disputed as to whether he was the one responsible for the eventual identification. Rather, I'd say he had a hand in prompting the Pentagon to do DNA analysis. In any event, instead of letting this article become a forum in which the Pentagon gets a poke-in-the-eye from deceased Sampley, I think we should remain encyclopedic about the Unknowns and Blassie by leaving the Sampley controversy out of it.--S. Rich (talk) 13:46, 8 June 2011 (UTC) PS: Here is Sampley's original newsletter about the case: [5].--S. Rich (talk) 13:52, 8 June 2011 (UTC)

Certainly. As it is, however, the article gives the impression that the Pentagon just decided to do DNA testing out of the blue, and happened to have appropriate comparison material on hand. I presume you will be correcting this? Nevard (talk) 20:49, 8 June 2011 (UTC)
I've been doing some work on the Find-A-Grave website for the United Nations Memorial Cemetery in Busan, Korea. Also, based on my intensely personal experiences and this historical related work with UNMCK, I proffer that the Pentagon just does not decide these matters "out of the blue". Recovery and identification of remains is a most serious, difficult, complex, and emotional undertaking. Sampley, for all of his good intentions, raised rabble. And I submit that the credit he deserves for the Unknown's ID issue need not be mentioned in this article because this article is about the symbolism of the Unknowns, not the technical details involved with their identification or lack thereof. Still, here is a source that addresses the particular issues in this case: [6]. Now some might ask why wasn't the inquiry done earlier. The answer is simple: All records related to the selection of the Unknown for entombment are destroyed once selection is made and the Unknown is laid to rest in peace. True, Sampley did have a role in convincing Blassie's family to push for DNA testing and the decision to allow such testing was made at the highest level. (See: [7]. The Pentagon did not have the info "on hand".) (Indeed, we had a situation where Unknown's NOK, e.g., POTUS as CINC, and Blassie's NOK were at odds. POTUS had a responsibility to all of the Unknowns recovered and unrecovered while Blassie's family had their more personal concerns.) So while Sampley had a role in making the identity of one particular Airman known to the public, in doing so he effectively emptied the grave that symbolized the loss that so many other NOK once had regarding their lost family members. What does this have to do with writing an informative and useful Wikipedia article? Easy -- I submit that the particulars related to the Sampley controversy -- in this article -- is WP:OFFTOPIC. --S. Rich (talk) 22:18, 8 June 2011 (UTC) 22:20, 8 June 2011 (UTC) And here is more info which should alert us to tread carefully in dealing with the Ted Sampley contribution to this issue: [8]. 23:10, 8 June 2011 (UTC)
I'm not claiming that the Pentagon decided to test Blassie's DNA out of the blue. I'm saying that this is the impression that the article tends to give at the moment. If you have an issue with the text I inserted, I would rather you proposed something yourself. As for concerns about whether this is offtopic, I don't see how information about the history of the Vietnam Unknown is any less relevant than erosion damage to the monument. Both subjects are relevant to the subject of the article, the 'Tomb of the Unknowns'. Nevard (talk) 02:18, 9 June 2011 (UTC)
There is a CNN story on the DNA issue. I'll find it and use it to revise. (The more I learn about Sampley, the less I want the article to have his fingerprints on it.)--S. Rich (talk) 02:30, 9 June 2011 (UTC)
I certainly don't believe that any Americans captured in Vietnam were left alive there or in Russia into the 80's and 90's, but discomfit with Sampley's tactics is really not a good reason to exclude his involvement, which is mentioned in many sources around the time of the disinterment. Sampley may have overstepped in attributing the misplacement of Blassie's remains to a deliberate plan rather than bureaucratic incompetence, but there's no need to mention that theory in the article. Nevard (talk) 02:39, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
The essential information about the Vietnam Unknown is presented and sourced. How the subsequent identification came about might better be elaborated upon in the Michael Blassie article. Here, again, Sampley's involvement with the Tomb of the Unknowns is WP:OFFTOPIC as it looks like he lobbied the Blassie family to lobby the Pentagon. Rather tangential to this article and giving any mention is WP:UNDUE. --S. Rich (talk) 02:51, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
I found very few sources from around the time of the disinterment that didn't mention him, although some journalists were lazy. He got the ball rolling- mentioning him is absolutely not undue weight. Nevard (talk) 02:58, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
Mention of him should go in Blassie's article. Here [9] in a 1994 CNN article Sampley says investigators had enough info to ID the body back when. It was not until 1998 that Blassie's family petitioned the Pentagon. This article does not suggest that Sampley did an investigation himself. --S. Rich (talk) 03:33, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
The sources I have added describe the context fully (including Sampley's investigation), which your reference- a 1998 article not a 1994 article, which should be obvious from the url if nothing else- does not. Nevard (talk) 04:41, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── My mistake. I did see it was a 1998 article and that is why I said 1998 in my comment. (I did not mean to say there was a 1994 article or imply there was a second article.) In any event, it looks like Vince Gonzales a lot of leg work on this and was the one who sparked the Blassies to act. As for Sampley, it still looks like he did not investigate and determine that it was Blassie. He was second-guessing (as part of his own agitating) the what the original trained forensic investigators had determined -- that the recovered bone fragments did not correspond with the physical description of Blassie and therefore could not be certified as Blassie. For now I think I'll cogitate on this some more and then make some edits. (And thanks for the "Hallowed Ground" reference. It is very good!) --S. Rich (talk) 05:58, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

Corrections to existing content and new data

I ask that someone make the below article edits for I do not want to learn the editor for what is a one time change for me. My interest in the Tomb is through my being the director of the museum in Marble, Colorado where the Tomb marble came from. Presently, I am making for the museum a very large display of the Tomb history up through the present. I am a historian at heart.

Original tomb of 11 November 1921 was a three layer marble one. (Library of Congress - a lot of 1921 tomb photos of marble and being three layers) (1963 Army QuarterMaster article that the tomb was marble)

The Piccrilli Brothers (under the direction of Thomas Jones) did the sculpting at Arlington. (The Brothers also sculpted the Lincoln statue for the Lincoln Memorial) (The Piccrilli Brothers sculpting the monument in a retype of an April 1931 publication "The Memory Stone" by the Vermont Marble Company, who (at this time) owned the Colorado-Yule quarry (3.9 miles from Marble, Colorado) where the Tomb marble came from)

Remove "sarcophagus" for the definition does not match with buial location. If the remains are buried under the sub-base then "sarcophagus" is not valid for the remains are not located in a "sarcophagus". The Wiki link to "scacophagus" definition is that of a stone object that is hollowed out and into which a body is placed. I am though awaiting a reply from the Vermont Marble Museum if the 1931 stone work in Proctor, Vermont included a hollowing out of the 56 ton die block.

The citation Link to meaning of the six wreaths is not present on the ANC website.

The 6 wreaths represent "a world of memories" from the April 1931 "The Memory Stone".

"Valor" in the article is "American Manhood" in the April 1931 issue of "The Memory Stone" publication by the Vermont Marble Company, the company that owned the quarry where the marble for the tomb came from.

Selection of WWII and Korean War unknown: (1964 Army QuarterMaster) a lot of great data

The Tomb was repaired in 2010 but the repairs failed after a couple of months.

In September 2011, the cracks were filled again.

Repairs inspected on 21 October 2011 by the Army Corps of Engineers and other experts and the repairs being pronounced successful.

OneHistoryGuy (talk) 23:57, 7 November 2011 (UTC)

I'll look over your ideas a bit more, but few editors like to edit for other editors. For example, the source that you provide for the article calls it a "sarcophagus", so that could be considered a problem. Or not, but it makes me ...... wonder. Carptrash (talk) 00:50, 9 November 2011 (UTC)

The date of the replacement block is not correct. Three block cuttings were made for a replacement in 1999, 2003 and 2005. The 1999 and 2003 blocks were rejected because imperfections were found. The 2005 block was flawless and brought down to the marble staging area (where it sits today on a yellow flatbed trailer in the north-west corner of the staging area). The information is from the quarry superintendent (Gary Bascom)and Kimberley Perrin vice-president of the company. I know the above does not comply with Wiki "verfiable" which is a Wiki weakness for verifable assumes that the published source is correct. What can be done for the above to be acceptable for inclusion? OneHistoryGuy (talk) 00:11, 9 November 2011 (UTC)

The by-the-book answer is "find a published source." Misinformation in published sources is best trumped by the correct source elsewhere. This is not that uncommon on wikipedia. A less PC answer is go ahead and edit the article, citing the names above as sources and see what happens. This is a fairly closely watched article, so your additions might be challenged and/or removed. Einar aka Carptrash (talk) 00:36, 9 November 2011 (UTC)

Ok......I will give it a go with the editing. I did come up a website of Ron Bailey, who photographed the 2003 block quarrying and his statement that the block contained imperfections and was used for other purposes. OneHistoryGuy (talk) 01:31, 9 November 2011 (UTC)

Where are the WWI unknown remains located in relation to the 1931 Tomb?

3 possibilities - In the body block (the inscription, wreaths, Greek figures) - In the base (which is below the body block) and subbase - in the ground below the subbase

The location determination is complicated by the use of conflicting terminiology and location on the ANC website(which is verbatim in the Wiki article)which uses "sarcophagus" and the location of the Tomb "sarcophagus" being at the head of the grave of the WWI unknown. Also, the text with the article photo of the Tomb says the Tomb sarcophagus is over the remains

Terminology and/or location is wrong for sarcophagus by definition is a stone that has been hollowed out so a body can be placed into it. Why would there be a sarcophagus if no body is in it? Every source that I cited and those already with the Wiki article use the word "sarcophagus"

Possibly the grave is in the base and sub-base...?? The height of the base is 1'-11.1" and the sub-base is 1'-10.9" with no one level being thick enough. If the location is here, the tomb would still be a sarcophagus. The dimensions were from digital scanning of the Tomb in 2004 by "Direct Dimensions".

Some other historical data:

My cited April 1931 "The Memory Stone" publication (by the Vermont Marble Company) refers to the body block as a sarcophagus

In the 1921 Tomb, the remains were placed into the three-layer marble tomb from the top. A photo in the article link to the MHC website shows the opening in the top and through at least the top two layers before the remains were placed inside. After internment, other Tomb photos show a different type of stone covering the internment opening rectangle that is flush with the top of the marble. OneHistoryGuy (talk) 06:12, 9 November 2011 (UTC)

can a document on Wiki Commons be considered verifiable?

Can a jpeg or pdf of the below documents placed on Wiki Commans be accepted as verifiable?

A chronology from the Vermont Marble Museum, in Proctor Vermont as when the body block in arrived in West Rutland, arrived in Proctor and departure for Arlington National Cemetery. Proctor, Vermont is also where the Vermont Marble Company was located (the company that quarried all of the Tomb marble, in Marble, Colorado.

A chronology from Mr Thomas Sherlock, Historian, Arlington National Cemetary as to when the various marble parts arrived, when the 1921 tomb was removed, when the subbase and rest of the blocks were installed, when the sculpting on the body block was done and the date in April of the dedication.

I am awaiting these chronologies OneHistoryGuy (talk) 21:52, 10 November 2011 (UTC)

File:TousRepairSep2011.jpg Nominated for Deletion

Image-x-generic.svg An image used in this article, File:TousRepairSep2011.jpg, has been nominated for deletion at Wikimedia Commons in the following category: Media without a source as of 21 November 2011
What should I do?

Don't panic; a discussion will now take place over on Commons about whether to remove the file. This gives you an opportunity to contest the deletion, although please review Commons guidelines before doing so.

  • If the image is non-free then you may need to upload it to Wikipedia (Commons does not allow fair use)
  • If the image isn't freely licensed and there is no fair use rationale then it cannot be uploaded or used.

This notification is provided by a Bot --CommonsNotificationBot (talk) 12:38, 21 November 2011 (UTC)

$48,000 posting for deletion

Another editor posted after my authorization of $50,000 "it actually was $48,000" with no source. The amount I cited of $50,000 is from the Army Quartermaster, who was the immediate Army organization involved with the Tomb construction. It could very well be another authoritative source has a different figure so I see no problem with having two different amounts that are cited. But without a source, the $48,000 posting needs to be removed. If someone comes up with a citation from the "Congressional Record" that the amount authorized was $48,000 then this is THE only amount and the $50,000 needs to be removed. OneHistoryGuy (talk) 05:22, 29 November 2011 (UTC)

I did find $48,000 on the website Home of Heros but the amount is claimed to be the cost of the Tomb and what I cite is the amount authorized by Congress. OneHistoryGuy (talk) 05:49, 29 November 2011 (UTC)

Source 29

Source #29 no longer exists. Does anyone know of a new source for it?

It is a reference backing up the knowledge that Tomb Guards do not leave, even in terrorist attacks (I assume 9/11). — Preceding unsigned comment added by Puppier (talkcontribs) 21:35, 29 October 2012 (UTC)

The source is actually #30. It has been tagged as a dead link. --S. Rich (talk) 21:44, 29 October 2012 (UTC)
I see it is fixed. Thanks IP!--S. Rich (talk) 00:46, 30 October 2012 (UTC)