Canada has two national war memorials. One in Ottawa and the other here in St. Johns. It was erected at King's Beach on Water Street where, in 1583, Sir Humphrey Gilbert claimed Newfoundland for England and started the British Empire in doing so. It was formally unveiled on Memorial Day, July 1, 1924 by Field Marshal Douglas Haig, 1st Earl Haig. The term "National" refers to this monument being built by the nation of Newfoundland before it became part of Canada in 1949..