Location: 68th Street, west side
Artist/Designer: John Quincy Adams Ward, sculptor; Richard Morris Hunt, architect
Materials: Bronze, Barre granite
Funding: 7th Regiment Memorial Committee, public subscription
John Quincy Adams Ward’s 7th Regiment Memorial is dedicated to 58 members of this New York City reserve infantry unit who perished in the Civil War. Known as the “Silk Stockings,” the regiment’s ranks were filled with the sons of wealthy New Yorkers. After its formation in 1806, this reserve militia participated in every war of the United States through World War II and helped quell many riots and civil disturbances in New York.
Central Park designers Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux, concerned that man-made objects would disrupt the natural beauty of the park, gave detailed instructions about the size, design elements, and location of statues. In keeping with the concept of a “people's park,” the 7th Regiment Memorial soldier is representative of all soldiers. This solemn citizen-soldier calmly keeps an ever-watchful eye over Central Park’s Sheep Meadow. The statue became the model for Civil War monuments across the United States.
7th Regiment Memorial
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