Antietam’s 150th Anniversary

150 years ago, members of four Connecticut regiments, many of them in their first Civil War fighting, were among the 23,000 who lost their lives during the Battle of Antietam. Today, we visit the archives to honor the state residents who fought in these Maryland cornfields and helped turn the tide toward reuniting the United States.

General Mansfield Monument, Antietam

 General Mansfield Monuments

Connecticut native and Civil War General Joseph K.F. Mansfield is honored with two monuments near the site of his mortal wounding on the Antietam battlefield.





CT 14th Regiment Monument, Sharpsburg, Md.

14th Regiment, Connecticut Volunteer Infantry

A granite obelisk honoring the 14th CT Regiment stands a short distance from the sunken farm road at Antietam that became known as Bloody Lane.





CT 11th Regiment Monument, Antietam

11th Regiment, Connecticut Volunteer Infantry

During the Battle of Antietam, the 11th Regiment was involved in fierce fighting near Burnside Bridge.





CT 8th Regiment Monument, Antietam

8th Regiment, Connecticut Volunteer Infantry

The 8th Regiment has a monument at Antietam on private property along Harpers Ferry Road, just outside the boundaries of the battlefield park.





CT 16th Regiment Monument, Antietam16th Regiment, Connecticut Volunteer Infantry

The 16th regiment’s service is honored with a multi-colored granite obelisk, dedicated in 1894, on the western edge of the 40-Acre Cornfield off Antietam’s Branch Avenue.





Antietam National Cemetery, Sharpsburg, MD

Antietam National Cemetery

The Antietam National Cemetery is the final resting place of nearly 4,800 Union Civil War veterans as well as more than 200 veterans of other wars.





























Constitution Convention Oak, Torrington

Constitution Convention Oak, TorringtonA plaque on Torrington’s Main Street marks the location of a pin oak tree planted in 1902 to honor the convention that considered revisions to Connecticut’s state constitution.

Torrington’s Consitition Oak stands across Main Street from the Hotchkiss-Fyler House, which now serves as a Museum and the headquarters for Torrington’s historical society.

The plaque at the foot of the 1902 oak (the larger tree near the center of the first image) provides a history of the oak donation program.

Delegates to the constitution convention were sent by all 168 Connecticut municipalities at the time, and each delegate was presented with a pin oak seedling by Charles Hawley, one of the state’s U.S. Senators.

Constitution Convention Oak marker, TorringtonThe proposed constitutional amendments were defeated by voters.

Torrington’s delegate was Orsamus R. Fyler, a Civil War veteran who also served as Torrington’s postmaster, state insurance commissioner, Republican state chairman and a member of state railroad commission.

According to a 2002 survey of the pin oaks conducted by the Connecticut’s Notable Trees Program and the Connecticut College Arboretum, about 75 of the trees have died over the years, and the locations of 21 were not recorded.




Hotchkiss-Fyler House, Torrington










Jim Thorpe Memorial, Jim Thorpe, PA

Jim Thorpe Memorial, Jim Thorpe, PAJim Thorpe is buried in an eastern Pennsylvania town that changed its name and built a monument honoring the famous athlete to attract tourists.

The Jim Thorpe Memorial site is on North Street (Route 93) in Jim Thorpe, PA. The site features a red marble memorial with his name and a quote from Sweden’s King Gustav V, who said after the 1912 Olympics that Thorpe was the world’s greatest athlete.

The monument also has several images depicting Thorpe competing in the numerous sports in which he excelled, including track and field, baseball and football.

Jim Thorpe Memorial, Jim Thorpe, PAThe mound on which the monument sits includes soil from Thorpe’s native Oklahoma, New York’s Polo Grounds and the Olympic stadium in Stockholm.

The site also pictures a 2007 statue depicting Thorpe as a football player, and another statue, dedicated in 2011, showing Thorpe with a discus.

The Thorpe memorial also includes an abstract sculpture, The Spirit of Thunder and Lightning, that was dedicated in 1998. Surrounding the sculpture, several wayside markers provide highlights from Thorpe’s life and athletic achievements.

Famed Athlete

Jim Thorpe Memorial, Jim Thorpe, PAThorpe, a member of the Sac and Fox tribe, was born in 1888 in Oklahoma. As a young man, he attended the Carlisle Indian Industrial School in Pennsylvania and led its football team to victories over nationally ranked teams.

At the 1912 Olympics, Thorpe won gold medals in the decathlon and pentathlon. The medals were stripped a year later because Thorpe had previously played semi-pro baseball, but restored in 1982.

After the Olympics, Thorpe played professional football for 14 years, and also played professional baseball for six of those years.

Jim Thorpe Memorial, Jim Thorpe, PAHe was voted the greatest athlete of the half-century in 1950, and in 1963 was part of the first group inducted in the NFL Hall of Fame.

Controversial Memorial

While it’s an impressive tribute to Thorpe’s athletic achievements, the memorial site is also the center of a controversy surrounding his burial in Pennsylvania nearly 60 years ago.

After Thorpe’s death in 1953, his third wife essentially auctioned the remains to two Pennsylvania communities, Mauch Chunk (Native American for “bear mountain”) and East Mauch Chunk.

Jim Thorpe Memorial, Jim Thorpe, PAThe Mauch Chunks, former mining and resort communities, were searching for an economic boost when they agreed to build a memorial to Thorpe, merge and change their combined name to Jim Thorpe. Local officials hoped a Thorpe memorial would attract the proposed pro football hall of fame and lead to the construction of other tourist destinations.

Other family members had planned to bury Thorpe on tribal land in Oklahoma, and were conducting a traditional feast the night before the scheduled funeral when Thorpe’s body was removed by his wife.

While Thorpe’s seven children remained divided over the years about his final resting place, the two surviving sons are continuing legal efforts to have his remains returned to Oklahoma.

Jim Thorpe Memorial, Jim Thorpe, PA








Jim Thorpe Memorial, Jim Thorpe, PA








Jim Thorpe Memorial, Jim Thorpe, PA








Jim Thorpe Memorial, Jim Thorpe, PA











Jim Thorpe Memorial, Jim Thorpe, PA








Jim Thorpe Memorial, Jim Thorpe, PA











Jim Thorpe Memorial, Jim Thorpe, PA








Jim Thorpe, 1913












National Monument to the Forefathers, Plymouth, Mass.

Update: We’ve published Faith and Freedom: The National Monument to the Forefathers, a book describing this magnificent monument in more detail. Learn more.


With a recent movie creating interest in the National Monument to the Forefathers in Plymouth, Mass., we put together a quick video slideshow to highlight the monument.

Our original post, with detailed information about the monument, is here.

Finding the monument: The National Monument to the Forefathers is on Allerton Street, a residential neighborhood in Plymouth. If you’re using GPS or an online mapping service to find the site, using the address “70 Allerton Street” will bring you close enough to find on-street parking.

Plymouth, Massachusetts









Hartford Distributors Memorial, Manchester

Hartford Distributors Memorial, ManchesterEight Hartford Distributors Inc. workers killed in a 2010 shooting attack are honored with a memorial on the company’s grounds.

The eight HDI workers were killed by a co-worker on August 3, 2010, and were honored in 2011 with a memorial dedicated on the one-year anniversary of the incident.

Eight stainless steel blocks stand in a small grove of trees outside the company’s warehouse on Chapel Road in Manchester. Each block bears the name of a fallen HDI employee, along with brief messages written by the victim’s family. The blocks, connected across the top by a steel ribbon, also contain personal mementos.

Hartford Distributors Memorial, ManchesterA blank granite tablet near the entrance to the memorial garden reads, in part, “If tears could build a stairway, and memories were a lane, we would walk all the way to heaven, to bring you back again.”

In addition to contributions from HDI, funds for the memorial were raised by the Manchester Rotary Club.

Near the memorial, a piece of sculpture by Mort Fishman titled “Ecology” stands near the HDI entrance.


Hartford Distributors Memorial, Manchester








Hartford Distributors Memorial, Manchester








Hartford Distributors Memorial, Manchester








Hartford Distributors Memorial, Manchester








Hartford Distributors Memorial, Manchester








Hartford Distributors Memorial, Manchester








Hartford Distributors Memorial, Manchester








Hartford Distributors Memorial, Manchester









Seth Warner Monument, Roxbury

Seth Warner Monument, RoxburyRoxbury native and American Revolution hero Seth Warner is honored with a monument at his burial site on the town green.

The monument, an obelisk dedicated in 1859, marks the final resting place of Warner, who participated in a number of military victories against British forces in New York and Vermont.

An inscription on the monument’s northeast face reads, “Col. Seth Warner of the Army of the Revolution. Born in Roxbury, CT, May 17, 1743. A resident of Bennington, VT from 1765 to 1784. Died in his native parish Dec. 25, 1784.”

The monument’s northwest face reads, “Captor of Crown Point. Commander of the Green Mountain Bouys in the repulse of Carlton at Longueil and in the Battle of Hubbardton and the associate of Stark in the victory at Bennington.”

Seth Warner Monument, RoxburyThe southwest face reads, “His remains are desposited under this monument. Erected by order of the General Assembly of Connecticut AD 1859.”

The southeast face reads, “Distinguished as a successful defender of the New Hampshire Grants and for bravery, sagacity, energy and humanity as a partisan officer in the War of the Revolution.”

The northeast face also bears a small plaque commemorating Warner’s appointment in 1975 as an honorary major general in the state militia.

The monument was rededicated in October of 2010.

Seth Warner Monument, RoxburyAfter his death in 1784, Warner was buried in a local cemetery before his remains were moved to the town green in 1859.

Warner is also honored with a statue on the grounds of the Bennington Battle Monument in Vermont.





Seth Warner Monument, Roxbury








Seth Warner Monument, Roxbury








Seth Warner Monument, Roxbury








Seth Warner Monument, Roxbury









Veterans’ Monument, Warren

Veterans' Monument, WarrenWarren honors the service of its war veterans with a granite monument on a small green.

The Warren Veterans’ Monument bears a dedication on its north face reading, “This memorial stands in honor of all the men and women from the Town of Warren who served our country in times of war.”

The undated monument, flanked by shrubbery, stands near a flagpole on a green at the intersection of Kent Road (Route 341) and Cornwall Road (Route 45).


Veterans' Monument, Warren









Stiles Judson Fountain, Stratford

Stiles Judson Fountain, StratfordThe fountain on the West Broad Street green in Stratford honors state legislator and attorney Stiles Judson.

The fountain, at the west end of the green, features a bronze bust of Judson on its east face above an inscription reading, “Gift to his native town.”

The monument’s west face bears a dedication reading, “Stratford honors itself by accepting this memorial from Stiles Judson, a gifted son, a public official true to every trust, an able laywer, and a loyal citizen.”

The fountain, which was dedicated in 1916, included drinking troughs for horses on its sides, and troughs for dogs on its front and rear faces. The fountain is not active today (the troughs contain water, but you wouldn’t want to drink it).

Stiles Judson Fountain, StratfordThe fountain was designed by sculptor Bela Lyon Pratt, whose other works include the Nathan Hale statue at Yale, the Andersonville Boy monument on the grounds of the state capitol, the Hive of the Averys monument in Groton, and a number of other works.

When it was dedicated, the fountain stood at the eastern end of the green, directly across from St. James Church. It was moved to the western end when Stratford’s War Memorial was dedicated in 1931.

Stiles Judson (1862-1914), was a Stratford native who practiced law in New Haven and Bridgeport. He served as state’s attorney for Fairfield County, and represented Stratford for several terms in the state House of Representatives and Senate.

Stiles Judson Fountain, StratfordJudson financed the construction of the fountain honoring him with a bequest in his will. Pratt was paid $5,000 for the fountain (nearly $100,000 today).






Stiles Judson Fountain, Stratford








Stiles Judson Fountain, Stratford








Stiles Judson Fountain, Stratford








Stiles Judson Fountain, Stratford