Connecticut's Civil War Monuments


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East Haddam

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Moodus Green
SR 151 at intersection with SR 149
Moodus in East Haddam, CT

Dedicated: October 24, 1900
Type: Granite pedestal and figure
Supplier: Stephen Maslen Company
Donor: Eliza Wheeler Miller
Height: 19 1/2'

Historical Significance

SOLDIERS MONUMENT, Moodus in East Haddam, is significant historically because it is an expression of honor and gratitude tendered to those from the community who served in the Civil War. The memorial was the gift of Eliza Wheeler Miller, who left $2,000 for the purpose in her will when she died in 1898. Pursuant to her instructions, the monument was modelled after one in Wilbraham, Massachusetts, erected in 1894.

The dedication ceremonies on October 24, 1900, were a great event. More than 1,000 attended, arriving on foot or in buggies and wagons.

The fact that the monument was the philanthropy of a woman was in line with a long record of Civil War service by the women of Moodus. In discussion of the impending conflict, Mrs. George Brainerd Gleason declared at a public meeting, "The day of compromise is gone. If the South will trample upon the law and take up the sword to destroy the Union, there is no alternative. The North must fight to preserve it." (The Hartford Courant, March 10, 1963). Starting in 1861, women in the community collected money, purchased bunting, and made a large Union flag to be raised on East Haddam's highest point. They gathered quilts, clothing, and medical supplies for the soldiers. At its final meeting, June 29, 1865, the [women's] Soldiers' Aid Society of East Haddam had a membership of 150.

Artistic Significance

SOLDIERS MONUMENT, Moodus in East Haddam, is significant artistically because it is an example of a turn-of-the-century Civil War memorial that reflects contemporary interest in classical revival trends in architecture and sculpture. The curved lines of the pedestal die, the round arch of the inset panels, and the swags on the cylindrical statue base are classical motifs. The renewed interest in classical precedents, which developed at the end of the 19th century, was highlighted by the architecture and sculpture of the 1893 Chicago World's Columbian Exposition. Moodus was up to date in reflecting the popular trend.

At the same time, the basic concept of SOLDIERS MONUMENT, Moodus, is a continuation of the norm followed for Civil War monuments since the 1870s. A die lettered with names of soldiers, units, and battles under a standard soldier's figure constituted the popular and highly regarded basics of Civil War monument design.

The supplier, Stephen Maslen Company, has changed hands. Successor is Beij, Williams & Zito, Hartford. Maslen records continue in the possession of Zito. Page 228 of the 1900 Maslen journal, which is devoted to the Moodus monument, includes a detailed drawing. Price was $2,040. Shipment was made to Goodspeed, Connecticut, presumably by water. The question of whether Maslen cut the stone in his Hartford shop, or simply served as agent for an unnamed Barre quarry, is unanswered.


SOLDIERS MONUMENT, Moodus in East Haddam, is a pedestal and figure of gray Barre granite erected in the center of the Moodus Green by a private donor. The names of 35 men from Moodus who died in the war are inscribed in the granite. Three features of the memorial, the curved shape of the pedestal, its round arched inset panels, and the cylindrical base for the statue, set it apart from most Civil War monuments in Connecticut.

The Moodus Green is a narrow triangular park at the northern end of the main street, Plains Road. It is in front of the Amasa Day House museum and other fine homes, some of which now serve commercial purposes.

The base of the monument consists of three risers with quarry-finished faces. The Wilbraham monument has four risers in the base, but otherwise appears to be identical. The pedestal curves inward in a convex line at the base. The corners of the pedestal rise to a foliate band bordered by raised moldings which serves at the corners as capitals, giving the corners the appearance of piers.

A recessed panel of polished granite is centered between the piers on each face of the die. The panel terminates in a half-round arch above the pier capitals. The lettering in the recessed panels, because it is incised in a polished surface, is difficult to read. The half-round surface is embellished with a raised half-wheel or shell design. The battle names are above the arches, under the projecting cornice.

The cylindrical base for the statue, on top of the pedestal, is decorated with raised swags. The base supports a soldier whose left foot is forward, projecting over the edge of the base. The butt of the rifle is at a right angle to the left foot. The left hand is over the right on the barrel. The left corner of the overcoat is folded back. The bayonet and accoutrements are suspended from the waist belt. Wearing moustache and kepi, the soldier looks straight ahead. A quarry-finished granite stele about 10' to the south of the monument carries a bronze plaque giving the names of those who served in World War I. The top of the plaque is decorated in bas-relief with an eagle, anchor, rifles, and swags.


Front (south) face of die, incised u.c and l.c. in recessed polished panel:

In Honored Memory
of the Brave
Defenders of Our Country
in Its Hour of Peril
1861 - 1865.
Erected by Charles Miller
and his wife
Eliza Wheeler Miller

Above panel, under cornice of die, raised caps:


East face of die, incised caps:

(3 names)
(1 name)
(6 names)




(9 names)
(2 names)
16TH REG'T(3 names)




(2 names)
(1 name)
(2 names)
(5 names)




The Hartford Courant, March 10, 1963; September 27, 1993, p. Al.

Stephen Maslen Company, annual journal for 1900. Beij, Williams & Zito, Hartford.

Francis H. Parker, "Contributions to the History of East Haddam, Conn.," column in Connecticut Valley Advertiser, early 1920s, cited in letter, Karl P. Stofko, Municipal Historian, March 15, 1994.

Roe, Alfred S., Commander, Monuments, Tablets and Other Memorials Erected in Massachusets to Commemorate the Services of Her Sons in the War of the Rebellion, 1861-1865 (Boston: Wright & Potter Printing Company, State Printers, 1910), Plate XXXIX and p. 127.