|Artist:||Levi Tucker Scofield|
|General Roeliff Brinkerhoff|
|Ulysses S. Grant|
|Philip Henry Sheridan|
|Edwin McMasters Stanton|
|James A. Garfield|
|Rutherford B. Hayes|
|Salmon P. Chase|
|William Tecumseh Sherman|
This tall and highly detailed sculpture group is based on Roman history and pays homage to significant 19th century Ohio historical figures.
Located on the Ohio Statehouse grounds, this sculpture is an impressive piece of the many monuments and memorials on Capitol Square. The main figure on the top of the monument is Cornelia Africana, a Roman historical figure who was seen as a virtuous Roman woman.
The title of the monument is based on one of her famous quips. As the story goes, Cornelia was visited by her friends who went to elaborate measures to gloat about their expensive jewels and other adornments. When it was her turn to show off, they asked her where she kept her valuables. She left the room and returned with her sons, saying simply “these are my jewels”.
The sculpture was conceived by General Roeliff Brinkerhoff who claimed that Ohio’s greatest contributions to the nation were her people. Architect and artist Levi Tucker Scofield was commissioned to develop a monument based on the theme. His design includes life size figures at various heights above the ground with Cornelia towering over them all. At Cornelia’s feet are some of Ohio’s greatest sons of the 19th century; including:
- Ulysses S. Grant, 18th President of the United States
- Philip Henry Sheridan a Union general in the American Civil War;
- Edwin McMasters Stanton, Secretary of War through most of the Civil War
- James A. Garfield, the 20th President of the United States
- Rutherford B. Hayes, the 19th President of the United States
- Salmon P. Chase, Governor of Ohio, U.S. Treasury Secretary under President Abraham Lincoln, and Chief Justice of the United States
- William Tecumseh Sherman, General in the Union Army during the American Civil War
The sculpture initially debuted in Chicago at the Ohio Pavilion of the World Columbian Exposition in 1893. It was then moved to the statehouse following the exposition. The original only had six figures at the base, but then Governor William McKinley (and future president) added Rutherford B. Hayes to make seven. Thus, when the monument is viewed from any angle, at least one of Ohio’s 19th Century presidents are visible.
If You Go:
Capitol Square and statehouse grounds and are open to the public and serve as the epicenter of Downtown Columbus. It is a dynamic space surrounded by high-rises and bustling streets. Several other monuments on the grounds provide for quiet reflection.
This work by Matt is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.