Bornes and the
Soon after World War II, the the people
of France decided to commemorate the liberation of their country by the
American 1st and 3rd Armies by creating a monument that would be an everlasting
symbol of liberty. They conceived of installing
symbolic milestones, or "Bornes," at every kilometer along the
route taken by these U.S. Armies, and naming this path "Liberty Road."
Thus, 1,146 Bornes, were installed along Liberty Road.
Each Borne is 48 inches high, 24 inches in diameter at the base and tapers
upward to 18 inches diameter near its rounded top. Each weighs 716 pounds.
All Bornes are identical. Their design represents the
red flaming torch of the Statue of Liberty, which was donated to the United
States by France in 1886. Circling the top on a blue field are the 48
stars of the American flag of the 1940s, to remind all who see them that
men from every state suffered to liberate Western Europe.
This particular Borne, number 35, came from the highway
174 between Utah Beach and St. Lo. The fourth - and perhaps final - Borne
to be brought to the United States, it was donated to the Camp Blanding
Museum in a ceremony at St. Lo in Normandy on 21 October 1997. The Prefect,
or Governor, of Manche presided, along with the Mayor of St. Lo.
Contained within the base of this Borne is an urn holding
earth from major towns and sites along the Liberty Road: Utah Beach, St.
Mere Eglise, Omaha Beach, Normandy Military Cemetery, St. Jean-de-Daye,
St. Lo, Vire, Mortain, St. James, Brittany Military Cemetery, and Domfront.
Placing this particular Borne at Camp Blanding is significant.
Between 1940 and 1943, the 1st, 29th, 30th, and 79th Divisions and the
508th Parachute Regiment trained there for extended periods. Then, in
1944, these same units fought side by side during the invasion and ensuing
Battle of Normandy to restore Liberty and Freedom. This Borne serves as
a permanent reminder of the men who lost their lives in World War II establishing
Liberty Road - the road to Freedom.
Museum and MemorialPark