The Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson monument on Monument Avenue in Richmond is at the intersection of Monument Avenue and the Boulevard (now Arthur Ashe Boulevard). The Monument Avenue Commission circulated background material on it for a public forum in August, 2017:1
Date Conceived: November 29, 1911
Date Erected: Cornerstone laid June 3, 1915
Statue Erected: October 11, 1919
Location: Intersection of Monument Avenue and The Boulevard
Sculptor: Statue: F. William Sievers
Organizer: The Jackson Monument Corporation with Rev. James Powers Smith (member of Jackson’s wartime staff) as president. Jackson’s widow Mary Anna supported the fundraising. The UDC contributed to fundraising efforts.
Description: 37’ tall equestrian statue of bronze on a base of granite. Strength, stability and self-discipline were characteristics often attributed to Jackson who was born into poverty, orphaned at 6, rose to near the top of class at West Point, and was a model soldier before the Civil War. The sculptor Sievers manages to portray both horse and rider as motionless, calm and focused. Oak leaves adorn the statue base and may be a reference to the characterizing of Jackson as stoic. There is an art deco (Greek styled) frieze lining the top of the base. The inscription on the north side of the base reads, “BORN 1824 / DIED AT CHANCELORSVILLE / 1863. The sides facing Monument (east and west) are inscribed with his nickname given by General Bernard Bee, “STONEWALL JACKSON”
The statue was erected following the end of WW1 and may have represented more of a “young brave soldier” archetype to people who had just witnessed the return of another generation of soldiers. During the unveiling ceremony the Governor and Jackson family were driven to the site in automobiles. Robert E. Lee’s grandson spoke and Jackson’s granddaughter and the sculptor’s son pulled the ropes to unveil the statue. A parade of VMI cadets, Virginia National guardsmen, and school children marched to the site.