NATIONAL MONUMENT TO THE FOREFATHERS
This was Official Medal, presented to officials and guests at dedicatory ceremonies Aug. 1, 1889; designer and number of pieces struck unknown but today, piece is extremely rare.
Idea for national monument to our Forefathers conceived in 1819 charter of Pilgrim Society (see also Part I, Pilgrim Jubilee Memorial--1870); "kept steadily in view and prosecuted to successful conclusion." Monument designed by Hammatt Billings, Boston; cornerstone laid Aug. 2, 1859; built of Maine granite at cost of $150,000; 81 ft. tall, then "largest granite statue in world." On main pedestal stands figure of Faith; beneath her, on wing pedestals, are seated figures emblematic of Pilgrim principles, i.e., Morality, Law, Education and Liberty.
Construction of monument, "on summit of a hill back of...center of...town," became "national undertaking." During 30 years from laying of cornerstone to completion, contributions received from 11,000 individuals "in this and other countries"; acknowledged by engraved certificates; those above certain amount, with small bronze replica of monument. Late Massachusetts Governor Oliver Ames donated $31,300, entire cost of Statue of Faith; 1878 Massachusetts legislature granted $10,000 for Statue of Morality; Congress $15,000 for Statue of Liberty. Pilgrim Society continues to maintain statue and grounds.
Photos courtesy of W. David Perkins
Obv. Monument in center; above, around National Monument; below * Plymouth, Mass. *; beaded border.
Rev. State Seal within center circle; outside, above Massachusetts; below, around are 13 stars; beaded border.
HK-148 White Metal. 38mm.HK-146 to HK-147a HK-149