Sunday, May 30, 2010

"Older than old"

This statue at Los Angeles National Cemetery was thought to have been erected in 1942, but it actually dates to 1896. About 10,000 Civil War soldiers are buried here.

Cheryl Wilkinson, a student of Waugh's, researched the cemetery for her honors thesis and found that the statue dates to at least 1896, when a Times article mentioned its arrival.

Wilkinson also disputed a book about military cemeteries that says it is the likeness of a Revolutionary War soldier.

She pointed to the figure's kepi (hat) and the "US" stamped on its haversack to show that it was a Civil War soldier.

Though the name of the sculptor is unknown, it's questionable whether he saw combat since the figure is shown doing something a soldier would never do: draping his hand over the muzzle of his rifle.

(Steve Harvey, For The Los Angeles Times / May 29, 2010)

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