The memorial to former U.S. President and Civil War General Ulysses S. Grant, commonly known as Grant’s Tomb, is the largest mausoleum in North America. The site opened in 1897 after an enthusiastic grassroots fundraising effort raised about $600,000 from more than 90,000 people—much of it in pennies and dimes. The campaign was spearheaded by Richard T. Greener, the first African-American graduate of Harvard University, who credited Grant with enabling his success by ending the Civil War. When it first opened, more than half a million visitors a year flocked to pay their respects to the popular war hero, including Civil War veterans, many of whom had to be physically carried by park staff up the monument’s many steps.


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