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Encyclopedia > Grand Army Plaza
The Soldiers' and Sailors' Archat Grand Army Plaza
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The Soldiers' and Sailors' Arch
at Grand Army Plaza

Grand Army Plaza in Brooklyn, New York forms the main entrance to Prospect Park. It is perhaps best known for the Soldiers' and Sailors' Memorial Arch, Brooklyn’s version of the Arc de Triomphe. It is also the site of the Bailey Fountain, and a monument to John F. Kennedy, as well as statues of Civil War generals Gouverneur Kemble Warren and Henry Warner Slocum, along with busts of notable Brooklyn citizens Henry Maxwell Tablet and Alexander J.C. Skene. Grand Army Plaza Arch, Brooklyn NY, 350X300 pixels, © 2003, by Wikipedia user:alex756, all rights reserved; the license granted herein is to Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. ... Grand Army Plaza Arch, Brooklyn NY, 350X300 pixels, © 2003, by Wikipedia user:alex756, all rights reserved; the license granted herein is to Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. ... For other meanings, see Brooklyn (disambiguation). ... Prospect Park is a 526 acre (2. ... Arc de Triomphe The Arc de Triomphe is a monument in Paris that stands in the centre of the Place de lÉtoile, at the western end of the Champs-Élysées. ... John Fitzgerald Kennedy (May 29, 1917 – November 22, 1963), often referred to as John F. Kennedy, JFK or Jack Kennedy, was the 35th President of the United States. ... Combatants United States of America (Union) Confederate States of America (Confederate) Commanders Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee Strength 2,200,000 1,064,000 Casualties Killed in action: 110,000 Total dead: 360,000 Wounded: 275,200 Killed in action: 93,000 Total dead: 258...

Contents


The Arch

The Arch in 1894, before the installation of statuary.
The Arch in 1894, before the installation of statuary.

The Plaza (as it was originally known) was conceived by its designers, Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux, simply as a grand entrance to the Park. It was meant as a gateway, to separate the noisy city from the calm nature of the Park. Olmsted and Vaux's design included only a single-spout fountain surrounded by berms (earth embankments) covered in heavy plantings. They still shield the local apartment buildings and the main branch of the Brooklyn Public Library from the noisy traffic circle that has developed. Image File history File links Grand_Army_Plaza_1894. ... Image File history File links Grand_Army_Plaza_1894. ... Frederick Law Olmsted, oil painting by John Singer Sargent, 1895, Biltmore Estate, Asheville, North Carolina Frederick Law Olmsted (April 26, 1822 – August 28, 1903) was a United States landscape architect, famous for designing many well-known urban parks, including Central Park and Prospect Park in New York City, the country... An unobtrusive bridge in Central Park, designed by Calvert Vaux, separates pedestrians from the carriage drive. ... A berm is a level space or shelf separating two features. ... The Main Branch, Brooklyn Public Library, Grand Army Plaza, 2003 The Brooklyn Public Library (BPL), is the public library system of the borough of Brooklyn in New York City. ...


In 1889, John H. Duncan — designer of Grant's Tomb in Manhattan — designed the Soldiers' and Sailors' Memorial Arch in a classical style similar to the Arc de Triomphe in Paris. William Tecumseh Sherman laid the cornerstone of the arch on October 30, 1889; President Grover Cleveland presided over the unveiling on October 21, 1892. 1889 (MDCCCLXXXIX) was a common year starting on Tuesday (see link for calendar). ... Grants Tomb, circa 1909 Grants tomb 2004 Grants Tomb is a mausoleum containing the bodies of Ulysses S. Grant (1822-1885), an American Civil War General and the 18th President of the United States, and his wife, Julia Dent Grant (1826-1902). ... William Tecumseh Sherman (February 8, 1820 – February 14, 1891) was an American soldier, businessman, educator, and author. ... October 30 is the 303rd day of the year (304th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar, with 62 days remaining. ... 1889 (MDCCCLXXXIX) was a common year starting on Tuesday (see link for calendar). ... Stephen Grover Cleveland (March 18, 1837 – June 24, 1908) was the 22nd (1885–1889) and 24th (1893–1897) President of the United States, and the only President to serve two non-consecutive terms. ... October 21 is the 294th day of the year (295th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar, with 71 days remaining. ... 1892 (MDCCCXCII) was a leap year starting on Friday (see link for calendar). ...


Statuary and fountain

The Quadriga - Columbia in her chariot
Enlarge
The Quadriga - Columbia in her chariot
Heralding Victory - a side view from atop the Arch
Heralding Victory - a side view from atop the Arch

The Arch gained its monumental statues nine years later. They were first suggested by the architectural firm of McKim, Mead and White as part of a plan to formalize the plaza in the spirit of the City Beautiful movement. The Park Commissioner, Frank Squire, liked the ideas, and engaged Frederick MacMonnies in 1894 to design three sculptural groupings for the Arch, the Quadriga, The Spirit of the Army, and The Spirit of the Navy. Grand Army Plaza Arch, detail, Brooklyn NY, 350X300 pixels, © 2003, by Wikipedia user:alex756, all rights reserved; the license granted herein is to Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. ... Grand Army Plaza Arch, detail, Brooklyn NY, 350X300 pixels, © 2003, by Wikipedia user:alex756, all rights reserved; the license granted herein is to Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1536x2048, 1378 KB) Summary View of Herald of Victory atop Grand Army Plaza Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Arch, Brooklyn, New York City Licensing File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1536x2048, 1378 KB) Summary View of Herald of Victory atop Grand Army Plaza Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Arch, Brooklyn, New York City Licensing File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are... McKim, Mead, and White was the premier architectural firm in the eastern United States at the turn of the twentieth century. ... The City Beautiful movement was a Progressive reform movement in North American architecture and urban planning that flourished in the 1890s and 1900s with the intent of using beautification and monumental grandeur in cities to counteract the perceived moral decay of poverty-stricken urban environments. ... Dancing Bacchante with an Infant Faun: fountain at the Boston Public Library Frederick William MacMonnies (September 28, 1863, Brooklyn Heights — March 22, 1937, New York City) was the best known expatriate American sculptor of the Beaux-Arts school, as successful and lauded in France as he was in the United... 1894 (MDCCCXCIV) was a common year starting on Monday (see link for calendar). ...


The Quadriga resides at the top and depicts the lady Columbia, an allegorical representation of the United States, riding in a chariot drawn by two horses. Two winged Victory figures, each leading a horse, trumpets Columbia's arrival. The lower pedestals facing the park hold the Spirit of the Army group and the Spirit of the Navy group. Installation of the groups began four years later, starting with the Quadriga on December 4, 1898, and finishing with the Navy group on April 13, 1901. The work took nearly seven years to complete, about twice as long as the construction of the arch itself. A quadriga (from the Latin language quadri-, four, and jungere, to yoke) is a four-horse chariot, raced in the Olympic Games and other sacred games, and represented in profile as the usual chariot of gods and heroes on Greek vases and bas-reliefs. ... December 4 is the 338th day (339th on leap years) of the Gregorian calendar. ... 1898 (MDCCCXCVIII) was a common year starting on Saturday (see link for calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Monday of the 12-day-slower Julian calendar). ... April 13 is the 103rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (104th in leap years). ... 1901 (MCMI) was a common year starting on Tuesday (see link for calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Wednesday of the 13-day-slower Julian calendar). ...


Just north of the Arch, and away from Prospect Park, stands Bailey Fountain, the fourth fountain to occupy the site. The original fountain, featuring a lone jet of water, was replaced in 1873 by Calvert Vaux's Plaza Fountain which had gas-lit colored horizontal and vertical water jets. The Electric Fountain, designed by electrical engineer F.W. Darlington in 1897, featured 19 automatic focusing electric lights with a dancing display of water jets controlled by a conductor. The Electric Fountain was removed during the 1915 construction of the IRT subway under the Plaza. 1873 was a common year starting on Wednesday (see link for calaber). ... An unobtrusive bridge in Central Park, designed by Calvert Vaux, separates pedestrians from the carriage drive. ... 1897 (MDCCCXCVII) was a common year starting on Friday (see link for calendar). ... 1915 (MCMXV) was a common year starting on Friday (see link for calendar). ... The Interborough Rapid Transit Company (IRT) was the operator of the original New York Subway line that opened in 1904 and additional rapid transit lines in the City of New York. ...


The Bailey Fountain was built in 1932 by architect Edgerton Swarthout and sculptor Eugene Savage. Named after Brooklyn-based financier and philanthropist Frank Bailey (1865-1953), he funded it as a memorial to his wife Mary Louise. It features an elaborate grouping of allegorical and mythical figures that includes the god of water Neptune and a pair of female nudes representing Wisdom and Felicity. 1932 (MCMXXXII) was a leap year starting on Friday (the link will take you to a full 1932 calendar). ...


Current use

The Saturday Green Market summer 2003
Enlarge
The Saturday Green Market summer 2003

The Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument received landmark designation in 1973; in 1975, all of Grand Army Plaza became a New York City historic landmark. In 1976 the Victory figure on the Quadriga on top of the Arch fell out of its chariot. The Arch was restored in 1980 and again in 2000. Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1200x900, 154 KB) Grand Army Plaza Market, Brooklyn NY, 1200X900 pixels, copyright 2003 Alex756 File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Grand Army Plaza Metadata This file contains... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1200x900, 154 KB) Grand Army Plaza Market, Brooklyn NY, 1200X900 pixels, copyright 2003 Alex756 File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Grand Army Plaza Metadata This file contains... 1973 (MCMLXXIII) was a common year starting on Monday. ... 1975 (MCMLXXV) was a common year starting on Wednesday (the link is to a full 1975 calendar). ... 1976 (MCMLXXVI) was a leap year starting on Thursday (the link is to a full 1976 calendar). ... 1980 (MCMLXXX) was a leap year starting on Tuesday. ... This article is about the year 2000. ...


The interior of the Arch is usually closed to visitors, but is sometimes opened for art shows and performances held inside. Only the eastern end is ever open to the public, with a staircase leading to a platform at the top by the Quadriga. The symmetrical western end, with its degraded stairway, is only used for storage.

The traffic circle around Grand Army Plaza
The traffic circle around Grand Army Plaza

The area around the Arch forms the largest and busiest traffic circle in Brooklyn; this point is the convergence of Flatbush Avenue, Vanderbilt Avenue, Eastern Parkway, Prospect Park West, and Union Street. In decades past, the circle hosted Brooklyn's "Death-O-Meter", a sign admonishing drivers to "Slow Up" and with a continually updated tally of traffic accident deaths in the borough. Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (2048x1536, 702 KB) Summary Grand Army Plaza traffic circle, from atop the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Arch (Brooklyn, New York City) Licensing File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (2048x1536, 702 KB) Summary Grand Army Plaza traffic circle, from atop the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Arch (Brooklyn, New York City) Licensing File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not... A traffic circle is an intersection with a circular shape and, usually, a central island. ... Flatbush Avenue is one of the major avenues in the New York City borough of Brooklyn. ...


For the past several years a Green Market, referred to as the 'Farmer's Market' by residents, is held on the Plaza in front of Prospect Park every Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.. On weekends a free tourist trolley service runs between noon and 6 p.m. from Grand Army Plaza with stops at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, the Boathouse, the Wollman Rink and the Brooklyn Museum. The Grand Army Plaza subway station is on the north end of the Plaza and furnishes transportation to the site and the nearby park. A Tourist trolley, also called a road trolley, is a bus (usually diesel fueled) made to resemble an old-style streetcar. ... The Cranford Rose Garden at Brooklyn Botanic Garden The Brooklyn Botanic Garden (BBG) is a botanical garden located next to Prospect Park near Grand Army Plaza in Brooklyn, New York, USA. Founded in 1910, the 52 acre (210,000 m²) garden includes a cherry tree esplanade, a one acre (4... Wollman Rink is located in Central Park, New York City. ... Brooklyn Museum, Eastern Parkway, 2005 The Brooklyn Museum, located at 200 Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn, New York, is the second largest art museum in the City, and one of the largest in the United States. ... Grand Army Plaza, located at Flatbush Avenue and Grand Army Plaza, is a local station with a very wide island platform, which the express tracks and BMT Brighton Line tracks pass underneath (built at the same time as part of the Dual Contracts). ...


Grand Army Plaza is also the name of a plaza at the intersection of 59th Street and 5th Avenue in Manhattan, opposite the southeastermost corner of Central Park. It is the site of a fountain contributed by Joseph Pulitzer. Street sign at Fifth Avenue and East 57th street Fifth Avenue is a major thoroughfare in New York City. ... The Borough of Manhattan, highlighted in yellow, lies between the East River and the Hudson River. ... A Central Park landscape Central Park (, ) is a large public, urban park (843 acres or 3. ... The Jet dEau fountain in Lake Geneva in Geneva A traditional fountain is an arrangement where water issues from a source (Latin fons), fills a basin of some kind, and is drained away. ... Joseph Pulitzer Joseph Joe Pulitzer (April 10, 1847 – October 29, 1911) was an American publisher best known for posthumously establishing the Pulitzer Prizes and (along with William Randolph Hearst) for originating yellow journalism. ...


References

Books

snowy-covered little parkspot behind the arch
snowy-covered little parkspot behind the arch
  • Lancaster, Clay; (1967, 1972 ). Prospect Park Handbook Greensward Foundation, Inc. ISBN 0-913252-06-9
  • Berenson, Richard J. (ed); deMause, Neil (text); (2001). The complete illustrated guidebook to Prospect Park and the Brooklyn Botanic Garden Silver Lining Books, New York ISBN 0760722137 Pages 32 - 36

Newspapers Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1024x768, 285 KB) Summary A little snow-covered park-spot behind the Grand Army Plaza Arch Licensing I, the creator of this work, hereby grant the permission to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1024x768, 285 KB) Summary A little snow-covered park-spot behind the Grand Army Plaza Arch Licensing I, the creator of this work, hereby grant the permission to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU...

  • (October 30, 1889). "Tecumseh's Warm Greeting" The Brooklyn Daily Eagle Page 6
  • (December 4, 1898). "Quadriga in its Place" The Brooklyn Daily Eagle Page 31
  • (April 13, 1901). "Navy Group in Place; Arch is Now Complete" The Brooklyn Daily Eagle Page 2

External Links October 30 is the 303rd day of the year (304th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar, with 62 days remaining. ... 1889 (MDCCCLXXXIX) was a common year starting on Tuesday (see link for calendar). ... December 4 is the 338th day (339th on leap years) of the Gregorian calendar. ... 1898 (MDCCCXCVIII) was a common year starting on Saturday (see link for calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Monday of the 12-day-slower Julian calendar). ... April 13 is the 103rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (104th in leap years). ... 1901 (MCMI) was a common year starting on Tuesday (see link for calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Wednesday of the 13-day-slower Julian calendar). ...

  • Prospect Park Alliance historical note on Grand Army Plaza Retrieved December 28, 2004
  • Text of an NYC Parks Department historical marker near the site Retrieved January 1, 2005

  Results from FactBites:
 
Grand Army Plaza - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1016 words)
The Plaza (as it was originally known) was conceived by its designers, Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux, simply as a grand entrance to the Park.
The Electric Fountain was removed during the 1915 construction of the IRT subway under the Plaza.
Grand Army Plaza is also the name of a plaza at the intersection of 59th Street and 5th Avenue in Manhattan, opposite the southeastermost corner of Central Park.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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