John Brown Gordon Statue

John Brown Gordon Statue, Atlanta, Georgia

Public Art : John Brown Gordon Statue

Sculptor : © Solon Borglum (1868-1922)

Description : Bronze statue of of the proudly sitting General John Brown Gordon astride his warhorse.

Date Unveiled : Saturday, May 25, 1907. Mr and Mrs Borglum and Governor Jarrell were guests of honor.

Funding: Private contribution $10,000 state granted $15,000

Location : On the grounds of the State Capitol, Atlanta, Georgia.

Inscription :

John Brown Gordon, son of Rev. Zachariah Herndon Gordon and Mrs Malinda Cox Gordon, was born in Upson County Feb.6, 1832. He attended a rural school in Walker County, Pleasant Green Academy in La Fayette, and the University of Georgia. He left the university in his senior years to study law under the noted Logan E. Bleckley, but soon gave up the practice of law to join his father in coal mine operations in Northwest Georgia.
At the beginning of the War between the States, John B. Gordon organized a company of mountaineers who wore coonskin caps and called themselves "The Raccoon Roughs". When his company was merged with the 6th Alabama Infantry Regiment of the Confederate Army, Captain Gordon was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel of the regiment. Early in 1862 he became a Colonel and later that year had fought up to the rank of Brigadier General. On May 14, 1864, he was promoted to Major General and had been recommended for the rank of Lieutenant General when the war ended, at which time he was in command of half The Army of Northern Virginia.
Dougals Southall Freeman, in "Lee's Lieutenants" wrote ; " If the final order of march has been arranged to honor those who had fought hardest and with highest distinction during the last days of the war, Gordon rightly would have been put first." In 1873 General Gordon was elected to the United States Senate. He was re-elected in 1878, but resigned in 1880 to develop mining and railway interest. In 1886 he was elected Governor of Georgia and re-elected in 1888. At the end of his second term he was sent to the United States Senate for the third time, serving from 1891 to 1897. He died on January 9, 1904 while visiting his son, Hugh Haralson Gordon in Miami.

History of the John Brown Gordon Statue : In 1906, it was decided to erect a commemorative statue in honor of General John Brown Gordon. In addition to the $15,000 set aside, $10,000 was collected by the Gordon Monument Association and other contributors. Well known sculptor Solon Borglum was given the commission. When the statue of John Brown Gordon was unveiled in the grounds of Atlanta's Capitol grounds, the local newspaper wrote, "Never before have the capitol grounds been so packed with an animated mass of humanity as that gathered around the Gordon monument yesterday". The day included speeches by General Clement A. Evans, Captain Tip Harrison, Colonel Nat Harris, and the Honorable Joe Hill Hall, a 100 voice choir and a poem  performed by Governor Joseph M. Terrell.

Trivia : The sculptor, Solon Borglum, is the brother of Mount Rushmore famed, Gutzon Borglum.

Solon died in 1922 after complications following an appendics operation. It is believed that two gas wounds he recieved during the War lowered his immune system.



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