Ulysses S. Grant Memorial

Simple bronze & marble statue honouring U.S. President & famed Civil War general Ulysses S. Grant. The memorial to Ulysses S. Grant was dedicated in 1922. In late 2011, the care of the Grant Memorial was transferred from the National Park Service to the Architect of the Capitol (AOC). The bronze elements were restored in 2016 and lamp posts were installed in 2019. Situated in Union Square at the edge of the reflecting pool and backed by the United States Capitol, the bronze and marble General Ulysses S. Grant Memorial honors the Civil War Commander of the Union Armies who was also a two-term President (1869–1877). It marks the eastern terminus of the National Mall and faces the Lincoln Memorial almost two miles to the west, symbolically linking the President and the General who fought to save the Union.

Celebrated as the largest equestrian monument in the United States, it is 252 feet long by 71 feet wide by 44 feet high and is a tour de force of monumental sculpture. It is a remarkable achievement by a sculptor who, with little formal training, toiled twenty years to translate his grand vision into cast bronze. At two and one-half times life size, the figure of Grant mounted on his horse forms the monument’s apex atop a pedestal that is over twenty-two feet high. Four lions lying with heads erect, guarding the flags of the Army and the United States, mark the corners of an imaginary pyramid’s base and visually align with the life-size Cavalry Group on the north and Artillery Group on the south. The monument is an essay in opposites, contrasting Grant’s customary stillness while observing battles with the turbulence of the charging Cavalry and Artillery. The symmetry and simplicity of the classically styled platform, suggesting a reviewing stand, provide an effective stage for the heightened realism of the bronze components.

 

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