Thursday, October 16, 2008

NYC - Statues and Monuments

Architecture can define a city and the roles of its inhabitants in that city, but part of the city's memory is in the statues and memorials the citizens raise to mark important persons or events. Shown above is roughly a third of the mammoth bronze plaque erected to honor the FDNY firefighters who died in the September 11th attacks. The station house the plaques are attached to is just across the street from the site.

The station house's (I believe it was Station 10) own plaque to honor the six members of the station who died.

This is the Gay Liberation Memorial in Christopher Square across the street from the famous Stonewall Inn, the site of the eponymous riots that are widely regarded as the start of the modern LGBT rights movement. The park these four statues inhabit share space with a much older bronze statue of General Philip Sheridan.

At the southern end of Battery Park sits the World War Two Memorial, a set of carved marble stelae inscribed with the names of New Yorkers who died during the war in the various services.

The northern end of the WW2 Memorial is dominated by this monumental bronze eagle dedicated to all those who lost their lives serving along the Atlantic coast and in the Atlantic Ocean. Part of the inscription reads, "Into Thy hands, O Lord ..."
The Korean War Memorial, named "The Universal Soldier." The flags you see on the base are actually mosaics, and depict all of the United Nations participants in the conflict. The concrete apron is carved with the names of each nation, along with casualty figures.

George Washington, standing at the entrance of Federal Hall on Wall Street. He took his oath of office at Federal Hall and then went to pray at St. Paul's Chapel (pictures of which will be forthcoming).

Theodore Roosevelt, at the entrance to the American Museum of Natural History. He's flanked by an African and a Native American, and dressed as a rough-riding cowboy. The great hall within is inscribed with excerpts from some of his speeches.

Yours Truly at the intersection of East 60th Street and Fifth Avenue, which means this is the southeast entrance to Central Park and that is the gilded bronze statue of General William T. Sherman, preceded by a statue of Victory.

At the northern reach of Times Square stands a statue dedicated to George M. Cohan, inscribed with the years of his birth and death and "Give my regards to Broadway." The picture was taken in the early morning right after a small rain shower, so it looks like a scene out of a Ridley Scott film.

Now this threw me.

Situated on a rise overlooking the same lake as the Belvedere Castle in Central Park rises this statue, inscribed "Poland." It's a monument to Wladyslaw Jagiello, the first King of Poland and Grand Duke of Lithuania. Why it's here, I don't know. Do you?

The inscription goes on to say that Wladyslaw defeated the Teutons at Grunwald in 1410. Again, why the statue is here, I have no clue.


Blogger Blondesense Liz said...

I think they put up the statue of the polish guy after bush's famous words, "Don't forget Poland!"

Good pics. I haven't ever noticed any of those statues when I am in town.

5:19 AM EDT  

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