Confederate Memorial (Wilmington, North Carolina)
Located at the plaza of South Third and Dock Street in downtown Wilmington, North Carolina, the bronze and granite Confederate Memorial stands honoring Confederate soldiers who fought for the Confederacy.
The monument consists of an eleven-ton granite backdrop, granite base, and a bronze sculpture of one fallen and one standing soldier atop the base. The two soldiers represent courage and sacrifice while the inscriptions along the top of the backdrop and bottom of the base, honors Confederate soldiers.
The United Daughters of the Confederacy had the Confederate Memorial erected in 1924 with a donation from Gabriel James Boney, whose name appears on the bottom of the statue. Henry Bacon who designed the Lincoln Memorial, George Davis Monument, and the Donald McRae House, is the architect also responsible for the design of the Confederate Memorial. Frank H. Packer who was the sculptor for the George Davis Monument, also sculpted the two bronze figures on the Confederate Memorial. The creation and purpose of this monument was to memorialize the soldiers who fought for the Confederacy during the American Civil War.
An inscription along the top portion of the statue reads:
To the soldiers of the confederacy
The bottom portion of the statue reads:
Confederates blend your recollections
Let memory weave its bright reflections
Let love revive life’s ashen embers
For love is life since love remembers
PRO ARIS ET FOCIS
This monument is a legacy of Gabriel James Boney
Born Wallace, NC 1846-Died Wilmington, NC 1915
A Confederate soldier
The Latin words ‘Pro Aris Et Focis’ translates ‘For Altar and Home.’ This phrase was used by Southern sympathizers of the Confederacy to defend their reasoning for the Civil War, which was to defend their altar and their homes.
Since being placed at the busy downtown intersection, the monument has had to undergo many repairs due to being hit by cars and cranes. In 1954, a car first knocked the statue down. In 1999, it was again hit by a car and knocked from its foundation and into the street. This caused a cracked foundation and the backdrop to be knocked over. While trying to reconstruct the monument, a crane carrying the backdrop slammed into a wall, cars, and power lines. After an absence of almost a year and a half, the monument was repaired, restored, and replaced in 2000, only to be damaged again as it was being put back into place. The mishap was quickly fixed and remains complete today.
- Hutteman, Hewlett Ann. Postcard History Series: Wilmington, North Carolina. Arcadia Publishing 2000. 58.
- Barbour, Clay. “Fallen Warrior.” Wilmington Star News. 1999/03/01.
- Hutteman, Hewlett Ann. Postcard History Series: Wilmington, North Carolina. Arcadia Publishing 2000.
- Reiss, Cory. “Monumental Repairs.” Wilmington Star News. 1999/11/04. 1A.
- Kolnitz, Cece von. “A Troubled History.” Wilmington Star News. 2000/08/14.