Danville National Cemetery, IL
NCA marks 50 years (1973-2023) of serving America's Veterans, Service Members, and Families.
View events, daily photos of national cemeteries and more.
The Soldiers Monument at Danville National Cemetery.
Visitation Hours: Open daily during daylight hours.
Office Hours: Monday thru Friday 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Closed federal holidays except Memorial Day.
This cemetery has space available to accommodate casketed and cremated remains.
Burial in a national cemetery is open to all members of the armed forces who have met a minimum active duty service requirement and were discharged under conditions other than dishonorable.
A Veteran's spouse, widow or widower, minor dependent children, and under certain conditions, unmarried adult children with disabilities may also be eligible for burial. Eligible spouses and children may be buried even if they predecease the Veteran.
Members of the reserve components of the armed forces who die while on active duty or who die while on training duty, or were eligible for retired pay, may also be eligible for burial.
» Eligibility for Burial in a VA National Cemetery
Vermilion County Airport on Bowman Avenue Road is approximately 10 miles from the cemetery. Travel south on Bowman Avenue Road (which changes to Bowman Avenue). Turn left on East Main Street. At the third traffic light, which is at the entrance of the VA Illiana Health Care System, turn right. Follow the signs directing you to the cemetery. The cemetery is located on the east side of the campus.
Fax all discharge documentation to the National Cemetery Scheduling Office at 1-866-900-6417 and follow-up with a phone call to 1-800-535-1117.
For information on scheduled burials in our national cemeteries, please go to the Daily Burial Schedule.
Military Funeral Honors
Local veterans organizations provide military honors. Please contact the cemetery office for further information.
For educational materials and additional information on this cemetery, please visit the Education section, located below.
Cemetery policies are conspicuously posted and readily visible to the public.
Floral arrangements accompanying the casket or urn at the time of burial will be placed on the completed grave. Natural cut flowers may be placed on graves at any time of the year. They will be removed when they become unsightly or when it becomes necessary to facilitate cemetery operations such as mowing.
Artificial flowers will be permitted on graves during periods when their presence will not interfere with grounds maintenance. As a rule, artificial flowers are permitted on graves during the period of October 10 through April 15, and ten days before and after Memorial Day.
Christmas wreaths, grave pillows and other seasonal adornments may be placed on graves from December 1 through January 20. They may not be secured to headstones or markers.
To preserve the dignity and appearance of your loved one's final resting place, the following items aren't allowed at headstones or columbariums:
- Alcoholic products
- Balloons, candles, or vigil lights
- Decorative and breakable glass, plastic items, or objects
- Non-government supplied floral containers (pots, planters, glass vases, etc.)
- Objects such as rocks or other durable items, beads or wires that when mowing or performing maintenance could become projectiles or become entangled in equipment that may cause injury
- Offensive items or those deemed contrary to honoring Veterans
- Permanent in-ground plantings or floral containers
- Pinwheels or windchimes
- Statues or stuffed animals
- Weapons of any kind, explosives, or ammunition
Also, permanent in-ground floral containers are not authorized for placement in new national cemeteries or in new sections of existing cemeteries.
As a courtesy, personal items, removed prohibited items, and artificial floral arrangements that are in good condition will be stored in an inconspicuous holding area for a period of not less than 30 days. During that time cemetery personnel will assist families who request to retrieve those personal items. Items that are not in good condition will not be placed in the holding area but will be disposed of immediately without notice. Personal items removed from gravesites which are not retrieved during the 30-day holding period may be disposed of consistent with the rules governing the disposal of Federal property.
VA regulations 38 CFR 1.218 prohibit the carrying of firearms (either openly or concealed), explosives or other dangerous or deadly weapons while on VA property, except for official purposes, such as military funeral honors.
Possession of firearms on any property under the charge and control of VA is prohibited. Offenders may be subject to a fine, removal from the premises, or arrest.
Danville National Cemetery is located in Vermilion County, IL, at the eastern side of the VA Illiana Health Care System. This area once belonged to the Miami, Kickapoo and Pottowatomie tribes of the Algonquin Indians. Salt deposits located on the Vermilion River attracted a variety of wildlife that served as a constant food supply for the local Native Americans; they later attracted the first white settlers to the region. In 1818, the Kickapoo ceded a large area of land to the federal government, including what is now Vermilion County. In the mid-1800s, coal miners settled in the Danville area, and soon the region ranked as Illinois' top coal producer. From 1841 to 1859, Abraham Lincoln practiced law in Danville; in 1852, he established a law practice with Ward Lamon. This was Lincoln's only permanent law office in the Illinois circuit.
Although no Civil War battles occurred here, many men from Danville volunteered for the Union. The men who returned home were often sick, wounded or disabled. In 1897, Congress authorized the establishment of the National Home for Disabled Volunteer Soldiers in Danville. The next year, a small plot of land was set aside as a burial site; it was subsequently designated a national cemetery in 1898. In 1901, the present cemetery was plotted and the remains of those buried in the old cemetery were reinterred at the new site.
In 1930, the Soldiers Home was transferred to the Veterans Administration (VA), and the cemetery became part of the VA Cemetery System. An internal study of the VA Cemetery System in 1948 recommended that the cemetery be transferred to the Department of the Army. No action was taken, however, and in 1973 when the National Cemetery System was reassigned from the Department of the Army to the Veterans Administration, it was merged into the National Cemetery System. Danville National Cemetery was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1992.
Monuments and Memorials
The Civil War Soldiers Monument was dedicated on Memorial Day 1917 to the "men who offered their lives in defense of their country." The United States had entered World War I the month before. The federal government built it, at the cost of $6,000, as the focal point of a circular-plan cemetery at the Danville Branch-National Home for Disabled Volunteer Soldiers (now VA Illiana Health Care System). Each National Home cemetery features a large, singular monument to honor veterans interred there. A plaza surrounds a granite base supporting the life-sized bronze by W. Clark Noble (1858–1938), a sculptor recognized for military monuments and portraits of American statesmen. This figure of a soldier holding a musket was used thirteen years earlier for the 100th Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry Monument installed at Antietam National Battlefield, Maryland.
Medal of Honor Recipients
The Medal of Honor is the highest award for valor in action against an enemy force that can be bestowed upon an individual serving in the Armed Services of the United States. Recipients receive the Medal of Honor from the president on behalf of Congress. It was first awarded during the Civil War and eligibility criteria for the Medal of Honor have changed over time.
Recipients buried or memorialized here:
Lieutenant Morton A. Read (Civil War). He received the Medal of Honor while serving in the U.S. Army, Company D, 8th New York Cavalry, for actions at Appomattox Station, Virginia, April 8, 1865. Read died in 1921 and is buried in Section 10, Site 3033.
Unknown Soldier interred in section 2, gravesite 274, date of death August 15, 1903.