Tag: Sculpture

  • George Hogg Monument, Allegheny Cemetery

    Angel of the Resurrection

    “Angel of the Resurrection” was the sculptor’s name for this bronze angel. Henry Kirke Brown was the sculptor, and he was one of the first Americans to cast his own full-size bronzes. When his statue of De Witt Clinton was unveiled in 1855, it was reported to be the first full-length statue cast in bronze by an American; this angel, however, is older, though a little less than life size (if angels have a life size). By some reckonings, then, this is the first large bronze statue cast in America. It was cast in about 1850, since George Hogg died in 1849.

    Face of the angel
    Angel of the Resurrection
    George Hogg monument

    More pictures of the George Hogg monument.

  • James Laughlin Monument, Allegheny Cemetery

    Face of Hope

    A fine statue of Hope with her portable anchor surmounts the monument to steel baron James Laughlin (of Jones & Laughlin), who died in 1882.

    Laughlin monument

    More pictures of the Laughlin monument.

  • B. F. Jones Monument, Allegheny Cemetery

    Jones monument

    Like a stone mushroom, this is the visible outcropping of an underground mausoleum. Instead of a heroic statue of steel baron Benjamin Franklin Jones, we get a contemplative allegorical pair, one laying a wreath and palm of victory where his body is buried, the other looking upward hoping to find the real B. F. Jones in that direction. Old Pa Pitt hopes so, too.

    Statue group
    Detail of the statues

    We have more pictures of the B. F. Jones monument from 2014.

  • Biller Monument, St. Peter’s Cemetery (Arlington)

    Statue on the Biller monument

    The edge of the cemetery is right up against a city alley, giving this romantically eroded monument a less-than-romantic location. Ludwig Biller died in 1903, and that is probably the date of this monument. “Marble” monuments like this one were out of fashion in the high-rent cemeteries by then, but they seem to have been produced much later for the ethnic cemeteries.

    Monument and alley
  • Nickel Family Plot, South Side Cemetery

    We also have some older pictures of the Nickel plot.

    Lina B. Nickel mourner

    A family plot of matching graves that is missing one important tenant, or at least the inscription for him.

    Nickel family plot
    Lina B. Nickel

    Lina B. Nickel, who died in 1916 at the age of 29 or 30, is buried here under an inscription identifying her as “MY WIFE.” But the matching headstone is blank, suggesting that Mr. Nickel (whose name was almost certainly William; see below) is not buried here. A husband in mourning might think that of course he would never marry again and would be buried next to his late wife when he died, but a year or two or five go by, and he begins to take a more realistic view of the rest of his life. Or it is quite possible that the whole matching set was ordered when the two sons died in 1912.


    A standard flower-dropping mourner. The wrists are always a weak point in this design.

    William and John Nickel

    Two young sons, William Jr. and John, died in 1912, very probably of the same childhood disease. From the name William Jr. we can deduce the father’s name.


    This angel might also have been dropping flowers, as we can guess from its downward gaze and the eroded bouquet.

    Face and wings