Historic Markers Across Tennessee

A Patriotic Pulpit

Marker ID: NPS 
Location: Stones River National Cemetery on the Stones River National Battlefield, Murfreesboro, TN
County: Rutherford
Coordinates: N 35° 52.934    W 086° 26.002
  35.88223333    -86.43336666
Waymark: None


The Rostrum is beautifully located in a grove of native trees ... and will be very greatly appreciated by the people who attend the Decoration [Memorial Day] ceremonies.
James Gall, Quartermaster Department Inspector, after inspecting the new Stones River rostrum in March 1883.

Only a handful of original rostrums still exist in the United States. Formal platforms for speakers and dignitaries - like one you see reconstructed here - were common to all national cemeteries and provided focal points for decades of patriotic speeches and ceremonies during veterans' reunions and Memorial Day activities in the years following the Civil War. Some even served as bandstands for summer concerts. The original 1883 Stones River rostrum (above) was torn down in 1941-42 after it had deteriorated beyond repair.

Ground-penetrating radar helped archeologists find the foundation of the original Stones River rostrum in 2004.

Erected by Stones River National Battlefield - National Park Service - U.S. Department of the Interior.