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| || SOLDIER'S MONUMENT |
East End Park
13 North Main Street
Winsted in Winchester, CT
Dedicated: May 30, 1905
Type: Tall dado, short shaft, and figure, all in granite
Supplier: Fox-Becker Granite Company
SOLDIER'S MONUMENT, East End Park, Winsted in Winchester, is significant historically because it is one of three good-sized Civil War monuments in a relatively small town, and because it was the philanthropy of a single individual.
Grand Army of the Republic and other interested parties in the Winsted and greater Winchester community had worked for many years in organizing the campaign which resulted in completion of WINCHESTER SOLDIERS' MONUMENT, Crown Street, Winsted, in 1890. The large scale and unusual design of the first monument might seem adequately to have filled the need of the modest-sized community for recognition of Civil War heroes. There is no record at hand of townwide discussion leading up to creation of the second monument, NON-REPATRIATED SOLDIERS' MONUMENT, Forest View Cemetery, an impressive memorial erected in 1900. SOLDIERS' MONUMENT, East End Park, also large and elaborate, is the third.
The donor of SOLDIER'S MONUMENT, East End Park, Charles H. Pine (1845-1915) of Ansonia, enlisted at age 16 as drummer in Company E, 19th Connecticut Volunteers (later the 2nd Regiment Connecticut Artillery) in Winsted on August 6, 1862, serving three years, until June 20, 1865. In postwar years he was referred to as General Pine. In 1867 he became a clerk in the Ansonia National Bank, rising to president in 1888. He was noted for his philanthropies, one of which was the gift to Yale University of $50,000 as a scholarship fund for the benefit of deserving students from Ansonia. Another was a chapel in Pine Grove Cemetery, Ansonia (see SOLDIERS MONUMENT, Pine Grove Cemetery, Ansonia). He regarded Winsted as his hometown. Pine was one of the principal speakers at the dedication on June 11, 1904, of SOLDIERS' MONUMENT, Seymour.
Other Civil War monuments which were the philanthropy of a single donor include SOLDIERS AND SAILORS MONUMENT, New London, and SOLDIERS MONUMENT, Unionville in Farmington.
The site chosen for the monument, East End Park, had been a military parade ground a century earlier, a circumstance which enhanced its suitability for a war memorial. Dedication Day on May 30, 1905, was a big event, with 2,000 people in attendance. The parade's line of march struck off with a platoon of police followed by Austin's Band; a group of 88 veterans; Co. M, 1st Regiment, Connecticut National Guard; Company No. 29, Sons of Veterans; a contingent of schoolboys; Winsted Business Men's Association; and Winsted Fife & Drum Corps, among others.
The donor was on hand. He presented the monument to the town, recalling with pride and satisfaction that our "heroes struck the shackles from 4,000,000 bondsmen" (Winsted Evening Citizen, May 31, 1905), a more vigorous and straightforward recognition of the Emancipation Proclamation than is often found in Civil War-monument dedication speeches.
Principal orator was the Reverend Father William J. Slocum, pastor of the Church of Immaculate Conception, Waterbury, Connecticut. His remarks were more conventional, focusing on the importance of saving the Union and impressing on the young the principle of willingness to die. He reviewed the war, recalling the "lesson it teaches in patriotic citizenship and especially what it conveys to the young and those who come after us." He deplored the view held by some that "this country was not a nation but a confederacy," and intoned that "The Union must and shall be preserved regardless of consequences" (Winsted Evening Citizen, May 31, 1905).
SOLDIER'S MONUMENT, East End Park, Winsted in Winchester, is significant artistically because of its robust size and elaboration. The monument is tall with proportions appropriate for the height. The relief of the trophies is raised higher than is customary. The polished surfaces and lettering of the dado add a feature of elegance suitable to the overall design. Only the figure is unremarkable.
The Winsted Evening Citizen reported that the monument was "of Quincy granite built by Fox-Becker Granite Co. of Middletown." Nevertheless, it is uncertain whether Fox-Becker actually designed and cut the figure and other components in its own shop or acted as agent for a Quincy quarry. It may be that Fox-Becker acted as agent because it probably did not have in its own shop equipment capable of handling pieces so large. Why Charles H. Pine, the donor, selected Fox-Becker is not known.
SOLDIER'S MONUMENT, East End Park, Winsted in Winchester, is a 27'-tall amply proportioned Quincy granite memorial consisting of high base, elaborately embellished dado and shaft, and crowning figure. It faces south in the southern end of a triangular open space known both as East End Park and the Town Green. The memorial honors all the community's men who served in the Civil War.
Four tall risers of the base support the dado. The faces of the dado are polished, with raised lettering on the south and incised lettering on the north, as recorded below. The east and west faces are plain. The gablets of the dado's cornice have rounded ridge lines, characteristic of the period.
The shaft is decorated with robust raised trophies, the flags-and-eagle emblem of the United States on the south, three stacked rifles on the east, the Seal of Connecticut on the north, and crossed cannon on the west.
The crowning figure is the conventional soldier, standing at parade rest with his left foot forward. The butt of his rifle is at 90 degrees to the left foot; its barrel is held by both hands, left over right. The overcoat has cape, waist belt, accoutrements, and bayonet. The soldier wears a visored cap.
A drinking fountain 25' south of the monument honors Samuel W. Pine, the father of Charles H. Pine, donor of the monument, and Jane Nesbit, donor of the fountain. A bronze plaque on the fountain reads:
In loving remembrance of Samuel W. Pine. The gift of his daughter, Jane A. Nesbit. 1927
Front (south) face of dado, raised and polished caps surrounded by raised and polished border:FOR THE DEAD
A TRIBUTE -
FOR THE LIVING
A MEMORY -
FOR POSTERITY/AN EMBLEM
OF LOYALTY TO THE FLAG
OF THEIR COUNTRY
Above, in gablet of pedestal cornice:1904
Above, in band under shaft cornice:COLD HARBOR
East face, in band under shaft cornice:ANTIETAM
North face of dado, incised caps in raised polished surface:IN HONOR OF THE PATRIOTISM
AND TO PERPETUATE THE MEMORY
OF THE 368 BRAVE MEN WHO WENT
FORTH FROM THIS TOWN FROM
1861 TO 1865 AND PERILED THEIR
ALL THAT THE NATION MIGHT LIVE
THIS MONUMENT HAS BEEN
ERECTED THAT ALL WHO COME
AFTER THEM MAY BE MINDFUL OF
THEIR DEEDS AND FAIL NOT IN THE
DAY OF TRIAL TO EMULATE
THEIR EXAMPLE Above, in gablet of pedestal cornice:THE / GIFT / OF / CHARLES H. PINE
Above, in band under shaft cornice:PORT HUDSON
West, above, in band under shaft cornice:PETERSBURG
Baruch, p. 15.
Robbins Brown, National Register of Historic Places Registration Form for Winsted Green Historic District, Winchester, Connecticut (Washington, D.C.: National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior, 1976).
Frank H. DeMars and Elliott P. Bronson, Winsted and the Town of Winchester, (Winsted, 1972), p. 143.
Margaret J. Gibbs, Municipal Historian, City of Ansonia, research on the life of Charles H. Pine, 1994.
Winchester, Connecticut, Bicentennial, 1771-1971, p. 43.
Winsted Evening Citizen, May 31, 1905, 1:1 (picture of Charles H. Pine).