National Monument Audit

The National Monument Audit, produced by Monument Lab in partnership with The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, assesses the current monument landscape across the United States. Monument Lab’s research team spent a year scouring almost a half million records of historic properties created and maintained by federal, state, local, tribal, institutional, and publicly assembled sources. For our deepest investigations, we focused on a study set of approximately 50,000 conventional monuments representing data collected from every US state and territory. The National Monument Audit allows us to better understand the dynamics and trends that have shaped our monument landscape, to pose questions about common knowledge about monuments, and to debunk falsehoods and misperceptions within public memory. The National Monument Audit is meant to inform Mellon’s landmark Monuments Project, a $250 million investment designed to “transform the way our country’s histories are told in public spaces and ensure that future generations inherit a commemorative landscape that venerates and reflects the vast, rich complexity of the American story.”

Launch Events

  • September 29, 2021: Keynote Launch Event with Dr. Elizabeth Alexander and Dr. Paul Farber (Register)
  • September 30, 2021: Data Webinar (Register)
  • October 4, 2021: Educators Roundtable (Register)
  • Order a Print Copy (Monument Lab Store)

National Monument Audit Directors: Laurie Allen, Paul Farber, and Sue Mobley

Project Data Artist: Brian Foo

Contributing Editor: Patricia Eunji Kim

Design: William Hodgson and Froyo Tam

Project Managers: Matthew Seamus Callinan and Greta Gabriel

National Monument Audit Research Associates: Alissa Ujie Diamond, Chrislyn Laurie Laurore, Allison Nkwocha, Malkia Okech, Christopher Roberts, Pamela Nicole Walker, and Phoebe Young

Interns: Veronica Brown, Rudy Gerson, Anna Green, Nicole Piepenbrink, Lena Popkin, Hana Pyzik, and Saguna Raina

Communications: Florie Hutchinson, Dina Paola Rodriguez, and Jose Vazquez 

Educational Advisor: Rabiya Kassam-Clay

Copy Editor: Gretchen Dykstra

Advisory Board: Andrea Roberts (Texas A&M University), Katrina Phillips (Macalester College), Kirk Savage (University of Pittsburgh), Krystal Strong (University of Pennsylvania), and Geoff Ward (Washington University of St. Louis).

Monument Lab Staff: Kristen Giannantonio, Naima Murphy Salcido, Nico Rodriguez, and Sarah Spencer

Legal Partners: Harvard Cyberlaw Clinic

Special thanks to: Elizabeth Alexander, Julie Ehrlich, Justin Garrett Moore, Vanessa Correa, Tatiana Evans, Josie Hodson, the Monument Lab Advisory Board, Shannon Mattern, John Carr, Julia Guerrero, Materials Conservation, attendees of the audit focus groups, and the Center for Public Art and Space and the Price Lab for Digital Humanities at the University of Pennsylvania.

Major support for The National Monument Audit has been provided by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.