City Council Committees on the Army and Navy Monument records
Scope and Contents note
The Committee on the Army and Navy Monument Collection includes the records of the various City Council committees created during the years 1866, 1870-1871 and 1877. In 1866, a committee was formed to procure designs and select a site for the monument. In 1870, a second committee was created to obtain designs for the monument. In 1871, a committee was created to organize the celebration of the laying of the cornerstone of the monument. In 1877, a committee was created to organize the celebration of the dedication of the monument. The majority of the records are from the Committee on the Dedication of the Army and Navy Monument, 1877. The Collection has been divided into six series: Committee on the Army and Navy Monument of 1866 records; Committee on the Army and Navy Monument of 1870 records; Committee on the Laying of Cornerstone of Army and Navy Monument of 1871 records; Committee on the Dedication of Army and Navy Monument of 1877 records; Oversized material; and Artifacts.
The committee records of 1866 were added to this collection in December of 2001. The committee records of 1866 include designs proposed for the monument and correspondence relating to the designs and selection of a site for the monument. Several of the proposed designs are missing. Most of the proposals are written descriptions. Some sketches are included. One item of interest is the notes recording the opinions on the submitted designs of several prominent citizens of Boston including Samuel Eliot, Francis Parkman, Theodore Lyman, and Charles Sumner.
The records of the committee of 1870 include designs submitted for the monument and a list of persons submitting designs. The designs are written descriptions of what the proposed monument will look like. One submission includes drawings. Several of the proposed designs are missing including those of Martin Milmore, the eventual winner of the competition.
The records of the committee on the laying of the cornerstone of monument of 1871 include orders, correspondence, news clippings, miscellaneous records, and lists of invited guests.
The records of the committee on the dedication of monument of 1877 include orders, correspondence, miscellaneous records, requests for payments, invoices, plans, invitations, tickets, list of invited guests, and programs.
The oversized material includes plans of formation and procession, platforms, and seats. The artifacts include two badges worn by City Council members and members of the Grand Army of the Republic (G.A.R.) at the dedication ceremony.
- 1866, 1870-1871, 1877
On 8 March 1866, the Common Council passed an order for the appointment of a joint committee “to take into consideration the expediency of erecting a monument in the city, in some prominent place, commemorative of the fallen heroes who so heroically aided in putting down the Southern Rebellion, and in sustaining the Constitution of our country and the Union of the States.” The Board of Aldermen passed the order on 12 March 1866. On 16 April 1866, the Committee submitted a report that recommended the advertisement for plans and estimates for a monument. The Committee chose the design and estimate of $100,000 of Hammatt Billings, of Boston, and recommended “Flagstaff Hill,” the highest elevation on Boston Common as the site for the monument. The City Council accepted the design and the Committee advertised for proposals for the work and found that the work could not be done for less than $160,000. Work was suspended on the monument and nothing was done until 1870. In 1870, the Committee advertised for designs not to exceed $75,000. The Committee received 16 proposals and chose the design of Martin Milmore. The City Council passed the order for the construction of the monument on 30 December 1870. On 18 September 1871, the cornerstone of the monument was laid. In 1872, Martin Milmore went to Rome and spent the following five years modeling his designs. In January 1877, a Committee was appointed to have charge of the erection of the Army and Navy Monument. In April 1877, Martin Milmore returned to the United States and informed the Committee that he would deliver the monument to the City on 17 September 1877. The City dedicated the Army and Navy Monument on 17 September 1877.
1 Cubic feet (2 document cases, 1 card file box, 1 flat box)
Language of Materials
- Boston (Mass.) -- Army and Navy Monument Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- Monuments Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865 Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- Guide to the City Council Committees on the Army and Navy Monument records
- Kristen Swett
- November 9, 2001
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Code for undetermined script
Part of the City of Boston Archives Repository
201 Rivermoor St.
West Roxbury MA 02132 United States