Civil War Memorial in New York City

Civil War memorial in the New York City is a city park that was used by the Americans to honor the soldiers who fought and died in the American Civil War. The park contains a number of monuments that also serve the same purpose of honoring some of the particular great soldiers who died in the civil wars. The monuments are situated in many parts of the city and even at the outskirts of the city. They are put there in commemoration of the men who fought and died to defend the United States (Blight, 167-442). The communities in the neighborhood also pay homage to these monuments to honor and commemorate the soldiers. I visited the Civil War memorial monument called the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument.

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The monument is a symbol in memory of the American past, the past of the people. In the history of the United States, the Civil War is depicted as one of the most devastating wars America has ever gone through. The war marked the death of 625000 soldiers, which is not equivalent to any loss America has ever had in any war (Savage, 67-200). The core cause of the civil war was the slave trade. The differences between the free and the slave states become very significant, with the Free States campaigning vigorously against the slaves’ trade and the Slave States resisting. After the heated battle, the Free States decided to use their powers to stop the slaves’ trade. The Slave States opposed and, therefore, the civil war broke out.

The war lasted during 1861-1865. It brought a lot of harm to both opposing sides but succesfully ended the slaves’ trade (Savage, 67-200). The war’s the devastating outcome made the US Government introduce some forms of memory of the war so that it may live in minds of the citizens for ages, and the stories to be told from generation to generation through monuments, movies, readings and attending the archives to witness them.

The monuments were built in memory of some of the important events and people during the war, with all the dead soldiers buried at the same cemetery for remembrance (Savage, 67-200). The biggest significance of the monuments was to pass information of the important events and people in the civil war and to bring memories of the devastating results of the war. This has been used for generations to bring awareness of the destructive nature of war.

The Soldiers and Sailors Monument is a bronze angle figure in the center of the memorial part. It was built in memories of Union Army soldiers and sailors from Queens who lost their lives during the Civil War. They are honored because of their sacrifice and strength in defending what they stood for to death (Savage, 67-200). The monument was built by a French sculptor Wellington Ruckstull in 1896. The people who designed and made this monument wanted to express the ideas of victory in the war fought by the Union Army soldiers and sailors, and they wanted to show the humility they have in commemorating the soldiers.

The implication of the vision of the designers of the monument was to honor in the humble way possible the fallen soldiers.  The angel of the monument is the goddess of peace and, therefore, the monument in some ways represents peace at last (Blight, 167-442); it also pays respect to soldiers who made it possible to win in the civil war and bring the peace.

The sculpture is very significant to the United States because it keeps on reminding the nation of the horrors of the civil war. It therefore helps in maintaining peace because every time one passes and sees it all they remember is the problems that was caused by the civil war and hence, the monument is bringing the awareness of the problems caused by this kinds of war to generations and even to the nation as a whole (Savage, 67-200). It also stands there for the families and friends of the fallen soldiers that died during the civil war, they could pay homage to their loved ones and have the feeling that, even if they died in the line of duty, it had been not in vain but brought light to the nation.

The monument conveys a lot of messages to the nation, the use of bronze as the material for the monument depict peace at last. The monument also symbolizes strength in togetherness; and this shows the people that because the soldiers decided to stand together at the times of war, they became victorious, and the result is peace.

The angel on the monument is the goddess of peace and it makes the American people believe that it was the goddess of peace that sailed them through to the winning end of the war and hence had to be honored in the monument (Blight, 167-442). The attire of the monument also shows the sufferings the soldiers went through become victorious in the war, thus conveying the message of the price of peace and the pains that can be endured to get peace.

The monument also brings into the mind the ways that were followed to reach the peaceful end that the generations are enjoying in this century (Blight, 167-442). From the readings and the movies of the civil war, it brings the causes of the civil war and its achievementsto the attention of the public.

While the slaves trade is the most important the causes, it is also true that there was animosity between the southern and the northern people of the American land, therefore, to some extent they wanted to separate and that could only be achieved by war. The outcomes of the civil war were the abolishment of the slaves’ trade and formation of the United States of America (Blight, 167-442).

Reference

Blight, David W. Race and reunion: The civil war in American memory. Belknap Press, 2001.167-442.

Savage, Kirk. Standing Soldiers, Kneeling Slaves: Race, War, and Monument in Nineteenth-Century America. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press, 2007. Print.67-200.

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