It is a beautiful statue, at Victory Park – tall and majestic. I admire it often.
But I never noticed anything wrong until my pint-sized companion looked up at it the other day and said, “Where’s the sword?”
According to the National Register of Historic Places, the Victory Monument was recognized in 1996 as part of the Victory Park Historic District, with the following description:
“The Winged Victory Monument was designed by local sculptor Lucien Gosselin and erected in 1929 to honor the City’s World War I soldiers. Three granite steps lead from a cubing around the monument to the base of the shaft. The obelisk monument features a shrouded figure on the east side of the base, paying homage to the war dead. On the west side, the mythic figure of Columbia issues a call to arms, and is seen with a helmeted doughboy and a sailor, representing the army and the navy. At the top of the forty-three foot high obelisk four corner eagles support Winged Victory standing on a sphere representing the world, holding the American flag and a laurel crown of victory. The sculptor’s signature is visible on the west side, while the date 1916 is inscribed on the east. Missing elements include Columbia’s swords and iron oil-burning lanterns which originally rested on the low granite plinths on the west side of the monument.”
From this, we learn that not only is the sword missing, but also “iron 0il-burning lanterns” are not where they are supposed to be.
I wonder for how long these things have been missing? I wonder if anybody has made a suggestion to fix them?
Also, the graffiti visible on the base should be cleaned up.
It seems like a small thing to ask, but once a statue like this falls into disrepair, and stays that way, we get used to it.
I say, let’s fix it.