Alexander Hamilton statue returns to Lincoln Park this month
Loop North News

Art & Architecture

(Above) 13-foot-tall bronze statue by Bela Lyon Pratt of Alexander Hamilton, the first United States Secretary of the Treasury, in Lincoln Park on September 22, 2014. The building in background at left is Elks National Memorial. Photo by Jim Roberts.

19-May-17 – Lincoln Park’s gilded statue of Alexander Hamilton will return to its pedestal in the park by the end of the month and, after two decades facing south, will once again face north, according to Jessica Maxey-Faulkner, spokesperson for Chicago Park District.

Hamilton’s statue had been scheduled to return by the end of last year, but Maxey-Faulkner says the statue’s return is dictated by the conservation process, not a calendar timetable. After microscopically-thin sheets of hammered gold were applied last fall, it was decided to keep the statue out of the cold as long as possible.

“The statue has remained protected in a dry, warm environment,” she said.

Interest in Hamilton has increased due to the popular Broadway musical. A member of George Washington’s staff during the American Revolution and later, the nation’s first Secretary of the Treasury, Hamilton (1757-1804) has been described as the “forgotten founding father.”

Among those pleased the statue will be reinstalled to face north, its original position, is Ward Miller, executive director of Preservation Chicago, a local nonprofit dedicated to architectural preservation.

Ward Miller “That was 20 years in the making,” says Miller (left). “It would be great if they could one day encourage the restoration of the black granite obelisk behind the statue. That contrast of the gilded statue against the black obelisk was a grand gateway into Lincoln Park from Sheridan & Diversey.”

Preservation Chicago is also advocating for the return of the Hamilton statue that once stood in Grant Park. That statue was removed around the time construction of Millennium Park began and has been in storage ever since.

By Peter Von Buol | Loop North News | peterbuol@aol.com

Published 19-May-17 4:46 AM

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