The transformation of battlefields into spaces of remembrance containing the individually marked graves of dead soldiers forms one of the uniquely modern facets of war. Scholars have demonstrated how systematic and bureaucratically organized burial of military fatalities originated with the American Civil War in the mid-nineteenth century and the First World War in the early twentieth (see, for example, Laqueur 1994 and Winter 1998). Gettysburg, according to the historian Drew Gilpin Faust, ‘signalled the beginning of a new significance for the dead in American public life’. Battlefield cemeteries organized by the government meant the soldier dead could no longer be considered ‘the responsibility of their families’ since ‘they, and their loss, now belonged to the nation’ (2008: 100-101). Similarly, in Europe after the First World War, commemoration became ‘a universal preoccupation’ and the need ‘to put the dead to rest, symbolically or physically, was pervasive’ (Winter 1998: 28). Although different factors resonated during each of these conflicts, high fatality rates and mass death proved necessary preconditions to the transformation of battlefields from spaces of war into places of remembrance. The emphasis on these wars and their relationship to modern commemoration leads to the assumption, at least somewhat erroneous, that the British did nothing for their soldier dead of the nineteenth century. Or that the transformation of battlefields into cemeteries necessarily began with organized State projects.