Statue of the Republic

Description

The Statue of The Republic is a 24-foot-high (7.3 m) gilded bronze sculpture in Jackson Park, Chicago, Illinois by Daniel Chester French. The 1893 original statue was destroyed by fire. The present statue is a smaller-scale replica, sculpted by the same artist, which was erected in 1918 in commemoration of both the 25th anniversary of the World's Columbian Exposition and the Illinois' statehood centennial. The statue is now located on the south end of the park at the intersection of East Hayes and South Richards Drive, adjacent the golf course and approximately where the exposition's Administration Building and its Electricity Building once stood. The statue was funded by the Benjamin Ferguson Fund, which commissioned French to cast this recreation of the original 65-foot-tall (20 m) statue that stood on the grounds of the Exposition of 1893. Edith Minturn Stokes served as French's model for the original statue. Henry Bacon, the architect of the Lincoln Memorial, designed the festooned pedestal for the replica statue.

The statue's right hand holds a globe, an eagle with wings spread perches on it. The other hand grasps a staff with a plaque that reads "liberty", partly obscured by an encircling laurel wreath. The original at the Exposition had a Phrygian cap on top of the staff. The original was only partly gilded (no gold on the exposed skin of the head, neck and arms), but the new version is completely gilded.The original statue for the Exposition, constructed in 1893, stood in front of the Court of Honor, inside the Great Basin (pool). However, in 1896 the statue was destroyed in a fire.
The current statue stands in the area between the exposition's Electricity and Administration Buildings (both demolished after the exposition), now an intersection where Richards Drive joins Hayes Drive.

The statue is referred to by Chicago historians by the colloquial name of the "Golden Lady." It was designated a Chicago Landmark on June 4, 2003.

Reference

Wikipedia, Blueballoon

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