Sunday, January 22, 2017

Media Boro's Civil War Monument a look back at the dedication day

NOTE: A look back at the dedication of the Civil War Monument in Media which is on the front lawn of the County Courthouse. The above picture is looking toward Front St. and Veteran's Square.

CHESTER TIMES – May 9, 1903

            SOLDIERS’ AND SAILORS’ MONUMENT UNVEILING AT THE COUNTY SEAT – Media in a Blaze of Color with Patriotic Decorations Today in Honor of the Men Who Faced the Foe in the Days of the Rebellion

            The town of Media is in the hands of the men who fought for freedom and liberty of all mankind during the crucial period between 1861 and 1863, and the day is theirs and all the joys and pleasures contained therein, at least as far as the people of the county seat are concerned.  From an early hour this morning persons from every section began to assemble on the streets of this pretty resident town.  The business houses and public buildings have been bedecked with flags and bunting and the place never presented a more patriotic appearance.  The colors of the army and navy prevail in the decorations, while every department of the army and navy is represented in colors upon the buildings about the town.
            All of this pomp and display is in honor of the unveiling of the handsome monument which has been erected in the Court House Square in honor of the men and women of Delaware County who served their county during the dark period of the War of the Rebellion.  Fully eight thousand persons are expected to be within the confines of the borough when 2 o’clock arrives, the hour set for the parade.  Some of the best bands in the State are here and will march at the head of the various organizations.  Thomas J. Dolphin, of Media, is the chief marshal, and John G. Taylor, of Chester, chief of staff.  Following the parade an interesting program will be given at the monument.  A large stand has been erected for the speakers close to the monument.  Captain Caleb Hoopes, 87 years of age, the oldest living veteran in the county, will pull the strings which release the veiling from the shaft.  He was about the monument yesterday the greater part of the day and watched the veiling process so as to be ready to do his part.
            THE ROUTE OF PARADE – The parade will consist of three divisions, military, firemen and civic societies.
            Each division will be under the command of a marshal and aids, who will be mounted, and at 2 o’clock, p.m., will form in their designated positions, as hereinafter prescribed.  The commander of each division will send an aid to report to the Chief of Staff at the corner of Jackson and Front Streets, as soon as his division is ready to move.
            The column will move promptly at 2:15 p.m., over the following route:  Starting at the corner of Jackson and Front, thence by Jackson to Washington, to Monroe, to Jefferson to Jackson, to Washington, to South Avenue, to Lincoln, to Orange, to State, to Edgmont, countermarch on north side of State Street to Orange, to Front, to Monroe, to Fourth, to Jackson, to Third, to the monument.
            On arrival at entrance to monument the battalion of the Sixth Regiment, N.G.P., will halt and allow the Posts of the G.A.R. to pass and enter Court House Square, who will close enmasse and face south.  The N.G.P. will enter the square from the entrance on Second Street, close enmasse and face east.
            The formation of the parade will be as follows:  Battalion Sixth Regiment, N.G.P., WILL FORM ON Jackson Street, right resting on Front Street.  Posts of the Grand Army of the Republic will form on Jackson Street, on left of N.G.P., facing each according to number of Post  Veteran Associations will be assigned positions in line with Posts of G.A.R.
            Carriages containing officers and guests of the G.A.R. will form on Second Street, right resting on Jackson Street, extending east.  Fire companies will form on Third Street, right resting on Jackson Street, extending west.
            Civic organizations will form on Second Street, right resting on Jackson Street, extending west.
            The following distance will be observed in marching:  Between divisions, 60 feet; between organizations, 20 feet.
            The column will march guide left.  When the monument is unveiled, all colors will salute.
            The school children will be taken into the line of parade on countermarch at State and Jackson Streets, and will march ahead of the G.A.R. to Olive and Front Streets, where they will leave the line and proceed to the monument.
            AT THE MONUMENT – At the monument the exercises will begin at 3 o’clock, and will be in the following order:   Music, First Brigade Band, N.G.P.; Invocation, Rev. Dr. David Tully; address of welcome, Chief Burgess A.G.C. Smith of Media; singing, public school children; music, First Brigade Band; unveiling, Captain Caleb Hoopes; singing, school children and audience; presentation, O.B. Dickinson, Esq.; acceptance of monument, John L. Grim; singing, public school children; music, First Brigade Band; Original Ode by J. Russell Hayes of Swarthmore College; oration on behalf of the Army, Hon. Isaac Johnson; music, First Brigade Band; oration on behalf of the Navy to be supplied, singing, public school children and audience; benediction, Department Chaplain Rev. John W. Sayers.
            There will be a grand campfire in the Court House, beginning at 7 o’clock in the evening.  The program for this feature of the occasion will include remarks by well-known persons; good music; singing by a double quartette of Media, one of its selections to be “The Old Flag Shall Never Drag the Ground,” and an original ode by Prof. John Russell Hayes, of Swarthmore College.
            The monument was erected at a cost of $10,000, the money being paid by the County Commissioners.  It is of fine granite from the Barre quarries in Vermont.
            THE INSCRIPTIONS – Each panel on the inscriptions is in the form of a double keystone, and all four inscriptions are in raised letters.  The main inscription is on the eastern panel facing Olive Street, and reads as follows:
Grateful Remembrance
Of the
Soldiers and Sailors
Delaware County
Who Fought for the Unity
Of this Republic
This Monument is Dedicated
That Future Generations
May Cherish the Principles
Civil and Religious Liberty.”
            The obverse panel on the western side and nearest to the Court House, contains a tribute to the women who – whether as nurses in the hospitals or in the equally responsible role of breadwinners or caretakers of the home, whilst the men of the household were at the front, are graciously remembered as follows:
“We Honor the Memory
The Noble and Patriotic Women
Who aided
The Defenders of Our Country.”
The southern panel is of all the most brief yet is pregnant with depth of meaning.  It reads:
“Our Country
Will Ever Remember
And Cherish Their
Deeds of Valor”
Equally appropriate for depth of expression and significance of meaning is the inscription that adorns the northern panel, facing to Second Street.  This reads:
“Heroes They Were
From the Men who
Fell in Baltimore
To Those Who Stood
Victorious at Appomattox.”
STORY OF THE PROJECT – The movement to have the monument erected was first started several years ago by Edward Blaine, a comrade of Wilde Post, No. 25, Grand Army of the Republic of Chester, who was then one of the Board of County Commissioners, at whose instigation a largely signed petition for the monument was sent to the authorities at Media.
Early last year Bradbury Post, No. 149, located at the county seat, took the matter up and appointed a committee of three, requesting Wilde Post to appoint a like committee to act in conjunction with them.  This was done, the comrades named from each Post being:  No. 149 – Samuel R. McDowell, Daniel McClintock, and George W. Eachus, No. 25 – Thomas Lees, Thomas Chambers, and William McGowan.  The result of their labors, which is substantially manifest at the county seat today, reflects the highest credit upon this committee, not only for the excellence of the work, but for the remarkable promptness of its accomplishment.
The members of this committee from Bradbury Post, being residents of Media were delegated by the joint committee as an executive body because of their ability to be continually upon the ground to supervise the progress of the project, and each one performed this duty with commendable faithfulness.
THE JOINT COMMITTEE - Last fall another joint committee was appointed to attend the arranging for the ceremony of unveiling the monument.  This body is composed of eighteen members, representing the four Posts of the Grand Army of the Republic in this county, as follows:  Bradbury Post No. 149, Media – Thomas J. Dolphin, Charles H. Pedrick, Jesse Darlington, Joseph Pratt, Samuel R. McDowell; Wilde Post No. 25, Chester – Thomas Lees, William McGowan, John G. Taylor, Lewis J. Smith, Charles K.  Melville, General Charles I. Leiper Post No. 639, Norwood – D.W. Crouse, A.E. Leonard, John H. Duffee, W.W. James, Samuel H. Heacock.  John Brown Post No. 194 (colored), Chester – Samuel Cain, Charles Lee, and Benjamin Bayard.
The officers of this committee are:  Thomas J. Dolphin, chairman; Charles H. Pedrick, secretary; Thomas Lees, treasurer
THE CORNERSTONE – The cornerstone was laid on October 30, 1902 in the presence of the County Commissioners, Grand Army men and a number of citizens.  A copper box, eight and one-half inches high, the same width and 18 inches long, was placed in the southeast corner of the monument.  It contained the following:
Certified copy of petition for monument and its endorsements
Report National Encampment, G.A.R., 1901
Report Department Encampment, G.A.R., 1902
Ritual of G.A.R.
Service book of G.A.R.
Rules and regulations of G.A.R.
Charter by-laws and roster of Wilde Post, No. 25
Charter by-laws and roster of Bradbury Post, No. 149
Badge of G.A.R.
Button of G.A.R.
Names of 4,724 sailors and soldiers who enlisted from Delaware County for the War of the Rebellion ’61 to ‘65
List of county officers
Joint Committee from Posts No. 25 and No. 149 to procure erection of monument
Joint Committee from Posts No. 25 and No. 149 to arrange cornerstone
Joint Committee from Posts No. 25 and 149 on unveiling monument.
County papers as follows:  Delaware County American Delaware County Democrat, Delaware County Record Morning Republican, Chester times The Progress, Weekly Reporter, and Delaware County Advocate
Smull’s Handbook
Flag of the United States
Photographs, as follows:  Court House, Home of Incurables, Chester Hospital, House of Refuge, County Home, Court room with court in session
Manual of Chester City Council
Sample ballot, 1902
Voter’s guide
Holy Bible
World’s Almanac, 1902
Report of Soldiers’ Orphans’ School, 1901
Horseshoe, forged by Comrade Chas. H. Pedrick
Bylaws of Media R.A. Chapter, No. 23
Bylaws of Chester Lodge F. and A. M., No. 236
Hayman Rezon of Pennsylvania
Several United States pennies and nickels
O.F. Bullard, James H. Worrall, William A. Seal, Thomas Chambers, Thomas Lees, William McGowan committee, A.V.B. Smith, adjutant
DECORATIONS ABOUT TOWN – The Court House is conceded to be decorated the most handsomely of any of the buildings about town.
May favorable comments were hard about the decorations on the Charter House
Many of the private dwellings about the borough displayed flags
The store of Harry P. Engle at the corner of State and Orange Streets attracted considerable attention.

1 comment:

  1. Fascinating! Thanks for sharing. I wonder if the copper box full of mementos was placed in the concrete of the cornerstone? Is it still there?