Monuments for Restoration

Two of the three bronze monuments that stand in the boulevard show the ravages of time and deterioration. The Court of Honor needs improvements to make it relevant to the 21st century.

George Washington   

Geo Wash 7Milwaukee’s first monument was given to the City by Elizabeth Plankinton in 1885.  A bronze of George Washington shows the hero standing tall on a granite pedestal in his uniform as Commander in Chief of the Continental Army.  The sculptor, Richard Henry Park (1832-1902) became a popular artist for Milwaukee’s elite early in his career. Unfortunately, today the surface of the bronze is covered with dirt and corrosion. The pedestal includes the word Washington and standing at the pedestal base is a mother with a child, both dressed in 19th century dress.  The mother is pointing to the inscription as a lesson for the child.  Yet, the mother is missing the back of her head and both she and the child are disfigured with black corrosion.

Geo Wash 5


Click here to read the full condition report.






Spanish–American War Hero 

SP Am war 2The second monument in dire need of restoration is the Spanish-American War Hero.  This bronze captures the image of a foot soldier dressed in a campaign hat, kit bag and khaki uniform.  In 1932, the thirty-fourth annual national encampment of Spanish-American War veterans took place in Milwaukee. Local newspapers claimed Milwaukee to be the first city to erect a memorial to soldiers of the war with Spain without outside help. In 2014, however, the sculpture is covered with eighty years of dirt, dust and corrosion.


Click here to read the full condition report.





Civil War Monument 

civil war 1The Victorious Charge was created by American artist John S. Conway and dedicated in 1898. This bronze sculpture is 9’10” high and sits on a 20′ square granite pedestal. This monument depicts four Union soldiers cast in bronze, caught in action and moving forward to victory. Although the Victorious Charge was fully restored during the 1990’s, it too is in need of cleaning and some minor restoration work today.









Court of Honor In The News

Milwaukee’s Oldest Monument Leaves City for Repair” – WUWM

George Washington Gets a Makeover” – CBS 58

George Washington statue will cross the border Monday for restoration” – JSOnline

George Washington statue on Wisconsin Ave to be refurbished” – BizTimes

‘Bringing George Washington back to life:’ Milwaukee’s 1st public monument gets much-needed repair” – FOX 6

Restored George Washington statue, Milwaukee’s oldest monument, returns to Wisconsin Ave.” – JSOnline

Newly-restored George Washington monument back on display in downtown Milwaukee” – TMJ4

George Washington Statue returns home to Milwaukee” – CBS 58