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Statue of The Republic

Coordinates: 41°46′46.6″N 87°34′47.7″W / 41.779611°N 87.579917°W / 41.779611; -87.579917
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Statue of The Republic
A one-third scale replica of The Republic, a centerpiece of the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition.
ArtistDaniel Chester French
Year1918 (replica of 1893 original)
Dimensions730 cm (24 ft)
LocationJackson Park, Chicago, Illinois
Coordinates41°46′46.6″N 87°34′47.7″W / 41.779611°N 87.579917°W / 41.779611; -87.579917

The Statue of The Republic is a 24-foot-high (7.3 m) gilded bronze sculpture in Jackson Park, Chicago, Illinois by Daniel Chester French. The colossal original statue, a centerpiece of the World's Columbian Exposition in 1893, was ordered afterwards to be destroyed by fire. A smaller-scale replica sculpted by the same artist was erected in 1918 in commemoration of both the 25th anniversary of the Exposition and the Illinois' statehood centennial. The replacement statue is at the south end of the park at the intersection of East Hayes and South Richards Drive, adjacent to the golf course and approximately where the exposition's Administration Building and Electricity Building once stood.[1] The statue was funded by the Benjamin Ferguson Fund,[2] which commissioned French to cast this recreation of the original 65-foot-tall (20 m) statue that stood on the grounds of the Exposition of 1893. Edith Minturn Stokes served as French's model for the original statue.[3] Henry Bacon, the architect of the Lincoln Memorial, designed the festooned pedestal for the replica.[4]

Daniel Chester French's original statue The Republic at the World's Columbian Exposition of 1893 in Chicago, facing the Administration Building across the Great Basin. This version had a Phrygian cap draped on the staff.

The statue's right hand holds a globe, on which an eagle perches with wings spread. The other hand grasps a staff with a plaque that reads "liberty", partly obscured by an encircling laurel wreath. The original at the Exposition had a Phrygian cap on top of the staff. It was only partly gilded (no gold on the exposed skin of the head, neck and arms), but the replica is completely gilded.[5]

The original statue, constructed in 1893, stood in front of the Court of Honor, inside the Great Basin pool.[6][1] However, on August 28, 1896 that statue was destroyed by fire on order of the park commissioners.[7] The replacement statue stands in the area between the exposition's Electricity and Administration Buildings[8] (both demolished after the exposition), at the intersection of Richards Drive and Hayes Drive. One of two additional replicas of the statue stands in Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, California.

The statue is referred to by Chicago historians by the colloquial name, the "Golden Lady."[9] It was designated a Chicago Landmark on June 4, 2003.[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c "Statue of The Republic". City of Chicago Department of Planning and Development, Landmarks Division. March 15, 2006. Archived from the original on December 26, 2008. Retrieved September 14, 2007.
  2. ^ Hermann, Andrew (August 9, 1991). "Public statues are lumberman's legacy to city". Chicago Sun-Times. Archived from the original on July 25, 2011. Retrieved March 18, 2009.
  3. ^ Morrone, Francis (1997), "The Ghost of Monsieur Stokes", City Journal (August), New York: The Manhattan Institute, archived from the original on January 3, 2011, retrieved August 2, 2015
  4. ^ Ira J. Bach and Mary Lackritz Gray, A Guide to Chicago's Public Sculpture, Chicago: Univ. of Chicago Press, 1983
  5. ^ "Jackson Park's The Republic". Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference. Archived from the original on September 3, 2003. Retrieved August 5, 2015.
  6. ^ Original photo
  7. ^ "Death of the Republic: The fiery end to the golden colossus of the 1893 World's Fair". The World's Fair Chicago 1893. August 28, 2021.
  8. ^ "Overlay of modern roads". Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference. Archived from the original on March 16, 2017. Retrieved August 5, 2015. The new statue is in the northern triangle.
  9. ^ "Jackson Park". Encyclopedia of Chicago. Retrieved April 18, 2012.

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