Have you ever wandered through a park and come upon a statue and wondered who or what inspired it? Maybe it towers above you. Maybe it can meet your gaze ‒ eyeball to eyeball. Sometimes it is shining gold. Other times it is a dark aged metal. Perhaps it was chiseled from marble or some other stone.
No matter its size or texture, it usually commands my attention. On closer inspection a plaque is usually present. Raised gold lettering on black, or carved recessed lettering often tells about the individual or event that the statue is honoring. These words may cause buried knowledge about the subject to rise, but often the honoree is being met for the first time.
Parks are not the only location for encounters with statues. Town squares, museums and our nation’s capital, Washington D.C. are home to many statues. National Statuary Hall in the Capitol has two statues representing each state. Most of the people these statues honor I know little or nothing about. When I first learned about these statues, I was curious. I wanted to know more about who inspired the statues. Why should we remember these individuals and their accomplishments? I decided to start a series of posts over the next weeks that will share what I discover. I hope I have sparked some curiosity and you will check out what I find.
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Table of Contents of Statues in the National Statuary Hall Collection
Colorado: John L. “Jack” Swigert
Connecticut: Jonathan Trumbull
Nebraska: William Jennings Bryan
New York: Robert R. Livingston
Nevada:Patrick Anthony McCarran
North Carolina:Zebulon Baird Vance
Pennsylvania: Peter Muhlenberg
Rhode Island: Nathanael Greene
South Carolina: John C. Calhoun
South Dakota:William Henry Harrison Beadle
West Virginia:Francis Harrison Pierpont
Wisconsin: Robert M. LaFollette
Car of History– one of the oldest sculptures in the US Capitol
Sybil Ludington– a true fearless girl
Edwin Booth– saved President Lincoln’s son
Dr. Mary Edwards Walker– independent spirit
The Statue of Freedom– stands atop the U.S. Capitol
The Statue of Liberty– Lady Liberty’s full name is “Liberty Enlightening the World”
Edgar Allan Poe– Father of the Detective Story and other mysterious writings…
The Signers of The Declaration of Independence and Subjects Related to it
BY GEORGE! He’s Gone… a statue of King George III that stood in Manhattan was pulled down on July 9, 1776
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Diana Erbio is a freelance writer and author of “Coming to America: A Girl Struggles to Find her Way in a New World”. Read more in her series Statues: The People They Salute, at www.dianaerbio.wordpress.com/blog and visit the Facebook Page.
6 thoughts on “STATUES: THE PEOPLE THEY SALUTE”
The statues should stay. The people of the time were reporting history & they lived it. What’s next? The Vietnam Wall, WWII monument, , all of the buildings in D.C. which reflect our Christian heritage, etc. The “history police” have been at work for years. I first became aware of this about 45 yrs. ago when a liberal hunting friend loaned me an 8th grade history book to read. It was not the same as I read in 8th grade. In my youth during depression years my parents and grand parents were all democrats which which shared the values of most present day republicans. At 21 I registered as a republican, in ’64 didn’t like the way the elections turned out so I got involved in grass roots politics, became a deputy reiistrar of voters, worked in campains for people I respected, the most notable a CA Gov. who later became Pres. of USA–a hell of a man. Wish Trump could emulate him. These protests make me ill and solve no problems, only waste resources. Still a news junkie do not like what I have witnessed. The protsters should spend week ends studying history. Bad as we are, a lot of people want to get here and few are leaving.. that should be a calming fact. I’ve had a good ride so far, born July 4th, ‘1932 on a farm in sp. Ohio, graduated from USNA in 1957, served as Naval Officer, worked in Aerospace business for 29 years, owned and managed a business for 20 years, and now manage assets providing rental property, and holding stocks in about 200 companies providing productive jobs for thousands. Where did our problems start? Entitlements? educating people on rights rather than responsibilities? Are these some of the things/ and the media? Have chores to do. Have a good day.
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Thank you for this series and photo’s. I have been to “Statuary Hall” many times throughout the years. Love the place.
Hey, kiddo! I seriously had a comment. Maybe just a request. I’ve had many history teachers over the years and I believe I have learned more from you and Ms. Tara Ross in the past few years, then the others combined. Our children do not get this kind of history in classes today. We do have to do something about that. I can only do some amounts for the grandkids of the siblings by word of mouth, when there is time and an eager ear. You ladies have to continue by passing on what you do, when you get tired of doing it. Perhaps, if you finish the statues in your list too quickly, you could find another angle to use for continuing. I often wondered what became of the children and grandkids of presidents (and kings of other countries) who were not famous on their own. Ike’s grandson, who married Nixon’s daughter, might have made a good politician, if not for the impeachment. Maybe he didn’t have the chops of either relative, but many may have hid their light under a bushel basket. Now, with the virus closing the schools, perhaps the parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles will see just how badly our schools are teaching, and actually take a hand in it, when things get back to ‘normal’. But I hope even that, in this case, is just a knob on the washer/dryer. Parents helping their children really learn, could be our real ‘gift’ from China. Keep up the good work, both of you, but make sure this continues, if either of you decide to quit. God bless you both, and those who may be your helpmates.