For many, the spire atop One World Trade Center stands as a memorial to what was lost on Sept. 11, 2001. For others, the absence of the Twin Towers in Lower Manhattan is memorial enough. The places listed below offer a tangible reminder of the attacks, giving all who visit a place to honor, to grieve, to contemplate, and to remember. By Jessica Allen.
Sitting on exactly half of the World Trade Center’s 16 acres, the 9/11 Memorial stands as a calm oasis in the midst of the urban frenzy, welcoming all who seek solace among its boundaries. Inscribed in bronze around two memorial pools (and the largest waterfalls in North America) are the names of every single person who died on Feb. 26, 1993, and Sept. 11, 2001. Surrounded by 400 trees, the reflecting pools and waterfalls sit in the Twin Towers’ original footprints.
Heroes Memorial Way, in Flushing, honors those who died on Sept. 11, particularly civil servants, including firefighters, military workers, and police officers.
Among the artifacts on view at the National September 11 Museum is the “Last Column,” the final intact column removed from the Twin Towers, whose removal from the site marked the end of the recovery efforts. From portraits, to flags, to the “Survivors’ Stairs,” the museum commemorates the attacks of 1993 and 2001 through a variety of narratives, photos, videos, and other multimedia displays. The museum stands as an extraordinary memorial and important educational center.
Located just off the ferry in Staten Island, Postcards honor the more than 250 residents of Staten Island who were killed on Sept. 11 and in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. Two white wings, made from marble and standing 30 feet in the air, frame a view of Lower Manhattan. Granite plaques showing the victim’s name, birthdate, and place of work line the inside of the wings.
Dating to 1766, St. Paul’s Chapel was where George Washington worshiped on his inauguration day. Its location across the street from the World Trade Center offered workers a place to rest and recover in the days following 9/11, and the small church memorializes those who spent time there then and in the aftermath through photos, objects, and concerts. A moving bronze sculpture depicts an ancient tree that was knocked over in the attacks.