The 1996 Haller Award was
presented to the structural engineering firm of James
Madison Cutts in Washington, D.C., for work performed on
the Korean War Veterans Memorial. The Korean War
Veterans Memorial was dedicated on the national Mall in
Washington, D.C., on July 27, 1995. The memorial
consists of a 164-foot long polished granite wall that
has been etched with more than 2,400 photographs of
Korean War support personnel. The wall forms one side
of a triangular “Field of Service” in which statues of
19 ground troopers proceed into battle. At the apex of
the triangle is a dark, circular reflecting pool with
the reminder carved in a single 16,000 pound granite
stone that “Freedom is not Free”.
The primary material for the
memorial is granite masonry with flamed, honed, and
polished finishes. More than 107,600 stones with a
combined weight of 1.5 million pounds were installed.
The granite panels in the 164-foot long mural wall were
detailed to precisely align the sixty-four 8-inch panels
that rise to 11 feet at the highest end of the wall.
Stainless steel anchors, bolts, and clip angles were
used to fasten the panels to a concrete base.
Granite paving stones were overlaid to create a smooth
junction of masonry.
Masonry was used as
structure, landscape, and the primary means of
expressing the memorial’s message. It was selected for
the project both for symbolic and fundamental
intentions. Conceptually, masonry recalls the harsh
environment of the Korean peninsula and provides a sense
of perseverance and enduring quality. Design of the
masonry explored new applications of technological
advances while using traditional qualities inherent in
the material. Construction of the masonry demanded
exacting standards during fabrication and installation.
James Cutts accepted the
award at the Seventh North American Masonry Conference
held at the University of Notre Dame, June 3 through 5,
1996. Others involved with the project include the
architect-engineering firm Cooper Leckly Architects in
Washington, D.C., the general contractor R.J. Crowley of
Laurel, Maryland, the statue fabricator Tallix Inc. of
Beacon, New York, and the stone fabricator Cold Spring
Granite Co. of Cold Spring, Minnesota.
Additional information on the Korean
War Memorial is available on the National Park Services
website at www.nps.gov.
Above and below: Seeming to emerge from
the grain of the stone, etched photos of support
personnel gaze out at the ground troops on their way to
The reflecting pool.
PHOTO NOT CURRENTLY AVAILABLE
Korean War ground
troops move across the “Field of Service” towards the
The award is named after
Professor Paul Haller, who started a renaissance in the use
and design of structural masonry. Haller, a civil engineering
graduate from the Federal Technical University in Zurich,
Switzerland in 1924, was responsible for testing over 1600 brick
masonry walls, and based on the results of those experiments,
designed an 18-story building with no structural frame. The tall
load-bearing walls of this structure were only 12 to 15-in.
thick, causing nothing less than a revolution in the structural
use of masonry. From this design and his experimental research,
rational structural design of masonry became possible.
The Haller Award is presented every three to four years to an individual engineer
or an engineering firm that has designed an outstanding work of structural masonry
engineering. This award recognizes the beauty, elegance, and economy of structural masonry
Details on submitting packets for
consideration for future
Haller Awards are included in the