Civil War Monument, Central Park, Jacksonville, Illinois

Jacksonville was a center of the Abolitionist movement, apparently, and it is reflected in its Civil War Memorial. There are a lot of names listed on its base for a relatively small town. At the top is the allegorical figure of Columbia, sculpted by Leonard Crunelle and obviously cast in bronze. The inscription on the…

Central Park, Downtown Jacksonville, Illinois

Jacksonville was founded by groups of “Yankees,” from New England, many of whom were graduates of Yale University. I can’t help but think the influence of the large town commons and greens of cities such as New Haven played a part in the design of Central Park, the outsized town square of Jacksonville. The center…

Eden Park Reservoir, Cincinnati

I’ve long been interested in the now largely abandoned practice in Western civilization of combining utilitarian structures with pleasure grounds in urban and even rural environments. Take Compton Hill Reservoir Park in St. Louis or Druid Hill Park in Baltimore, for example. Such practices go far back in history until at least the Renaissance and…

Former Site of Union Park, Soulard

Along Russell Boulevard in Soulard is an interesting row of buildings, some quite old such as this one above and below which now houses artists’ studios (as well as an amazing terracotta frieze which is sadly obscured by a gnarled tree). I was alerted by a friend who once lived here. If anyone has a…

Boyd Plantation, Towne Park

Moved and restored after a disastrous fire, the Boyd Plantation house is now the centerpiece of Towne Park near Foristell in northern St. Charles County. It sits in a broad swath of open land east of Highway 63 on land donated by the Towne family. You approach it from the north where you can see…

George Washington Statue, Lafayette Park

The George Washington Monument in Lafayette Park is the only public memorial to the president that I know of in the city. On this Presidents Day, I was also thinking that I don’t know of any memorials to Abraham Lincoln. Does anyone know of one? This statue has an interesting story, as it is a…

Fort Zumwalt Park, O’Fallon

Fort Zumwalt is a real place, and not just the name of four high schools, and this reconstruction of the fortified log cabin that gives its name to the surrounding park and area gives us an idea of early settler days in St. Charles County. Interestingly, Fort Zumwalt, which was originally constructed by Jacob Zumwalt…

The Naked Truth, November 2021

I looked at The Naked Truth back in 2007, and I thought it was due time to go back and more carefully examine this famous sculpture that was moved around Reservoir Park with the construction of Interstate 44. It commemorates the three editors of the Westliche Post, a German language newspaper that I can attest…