Skip to comments.New life for an old Civil War sentinel
Posted on 06/16/2007 8:42:56 PM PDT by Coleus
Bill Styple and time have a peculiar relationship. He lives in the present, writes about the past and wants to save both the present and the past for the future of his town. "I just want to preserve for our children a little of what I and my parents had in the past," says Styple, 46, who, with others from Kearny, is about to give the Hudson County town, its residents and its children a gift: A statue of a Civil War soldier.
A replica of a statue that, for nearly 50 years until 1933, stood mute guard before the old New Jersey Home for Disabled Soldiers, a place in Kearny that once housed more than 200 men maimed in the Civil War. The home, statue and, especially, the aging vets, were long part of Kearny lore. "I grew up listening to my parents and grandparents talking about seeing the soldiers, about the ceremonies there," says Styple.
After the last old soldier faded away, the place closed, the zinc statue was taken down, and its bronze platform melted to serve yet another war. The monument, already vandalized and beaten by weather, was taken to a National Guard armory in West Orange where, to prevent further vandalism, was laid across the top of a corrugated metal shed. "That's where we found it," says Styple, the Kearny town historian, a Civil War historian, and president of the group that raised more than $30,000 to have the bronze replica recast from the old statue and built at the Johnson Atelier in Mercerville, the workshop founded by sculptor J. Seward Johnson of the family that owned Johnson and Johnson Pharmaceuticals.
(Excerpt) Read more at nj.com ...
It is well to remember those who gave their all.
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