Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Historic Wednesday - Gettysburg National Cemetery

Soldiers National Monument
at the center of
Gettysburg National Cemetery

The first monument of any type to be placed at Gettysburg was the Soldiers National Monument in the National Cemetery.

It was designed by the Batterson-Canfield Company and sculpted by Randolph Rogers. The cornerstone was laid on July 4, 1865, and the full monument dedicated on July 1, 1869.

The white Westerly granite pedestal supports a shaft and marble statue entitled "Genius of Liberty". The four buttresses on the pedestal support allegorical statues in white marble:

War, depicted as a seated American soldier resting after the conflict. The soldier is said to be relating the story of what happened at Gettysburg to the second monument,

History, depicted as a woman recording the names and accomplishments of the dead in her book.

Plenty, a woman with a sheaf of wheat over her arm and cornucopias filled with the fruits of the earth, the result of the peace at the end of the war.

Peace, a mechanic accompanied by machine cogs and heavy hammers. Although statues depicting peace are generally represented by female models, the seated mechanic in this work is male.

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