Mary McLeod Bethune Memorial

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Mary McLeod Bethune Memorial
Mary McLeod Bethune Memorial, Washington, D.C LCCN2011630730.tif
Artist Robert Berks
Type Bronze
Location Washington, D.C.
Coordinates 38°53′23″N 76°59′20″W / 38.889722°N 76.988889°W / 38.889722; -76.988889
Owner National Park Service

Mary McLeod Bethune Memorial is a bronze statue honoring educator and activist Mary McLeod Bethune, by Robert Berks.[1]

The monument is the first statue erected on public land in Washington, D.C. to honor an African American and a woman. The statue features an elderly Mrs. Bethune handing a copy of her legacy to two young black children. Mrs. Bethune is supporting herself by a cane given to her by President Franklin D. Roosevelt. The statue was unveiled on the anniversary of her 99th birthday, July 10, 1974, before a crowd of over 18,000 people. The funds for the monument were raised by the National Council of Negro Women, the organization Mrs. Bethune founded in 1935. [2]

It is located in Lincoln Park, at East Capitol Street and 12th Street N.E. Washington, D.C.[3]

The inscription reads:
(Front bottom of Bethune's dress:)
(copyright symbol)
73
Berks (Front of base:)
MARY McLEOD BETHUNE
1875 1955
(Front of base, in script:)
Let her works praise her
(Bronze plaque, front of base:)
ERECTED
JULY 10, 1974
BY THE
NATIONAL COUNCIL OF NEGRO WOMEN, INC.
DOROTHY I. HEIGHT
PRESIDENT
(Bronze plaque running around sides of base:)
I LEAVE YOU LOVE. I LEAVE YOU HOPE. I LEAVE YOU THE CHALLENGE OF DEVELOPING CONFIDENCE IN ONE ANOTHER. I LEAVE YOU A THIRST FOR EDUCATION. I LEAVE YOU A RESPECT FOR THE USE OF POWER. I LEAVE YOU FAITH. I LEAVE YOU RACIAL DIGNITY. I LEAVE YOU A DESIRE TO LIVE HARMONIOUSLY WITH YOUR FELLOW MEN. I LEAVE YOU FINALLY, A RESPONSIBILITY TO OUR YOUNG PEOPLE.
Mary McLeod Bethune (in script)

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