In early December 2013, on procrastinator's request, Fegelein1906 edited the server world in MCEdit and flattened the area around East Village. Molster first built the Procrastocaust Memorial to commemorate the loss. Sometime later, Molster speculated from old maps that there had been a village flattened in Athyras as well (this later turned out to be a pyramid) and decided to build the Cenotaph. This was completed in late January 2014. The site chosen was in Turkish Street near the Procrastocaust Memorial.
In the first couple of weeks after the server recovered from the First Server Downtime, the mysterious Rogue Chunk Event happened. The chunk where the Cenotaph was reverted to nature. In response, Molster rebuilt the cenotaph using the same design, using this opportunity to place the structure in a more prominent position where it stands today (albeit still in the same chunk that reverted).
The Cenotaph was based off the one in Kuala Lumpur, which is different enough from the more widespread design of the one in London (and its close copies elsewhere around the world).