HENDERSON, Ky. (WEHT) – An old soldier has been standing guard over the Wabash County, Illinois, courthouse for more than 100 years.
Near the Wabash County Courthouse is a war monument honoring all veterans who survived a war and all soldiers who died in battle. On one side near the monument’s base it reads, “To the lasting memory of all her sons who fought for the stars and stripes in all wars; those who fought and lived, those who fought and and died; those who gave much, and those who gave all; Citizens of Wabash County erect this monument.” On a plaque at the base of the monument it reads, “Soldiers Monument. Dedicated August 1906. Grand Army of the Republic restored and rededicated November 2007. Mt. Carmel Lions Club and Wabash County Historical Society.”
According to Claudia Dant of the Wabash County Museum, the soldier at the top of the monument is a Union soldier standing guard. Dant says the monument was placed there by the T.S. Bowers Post of the Grand Army of the Republic. She says the monument is made of zinc, and she confirms the monument is dedicated to all soldiers of all wars and the monument was erected in 1906.
Dant explains that money was raised in the early 2000s by the Wabash County Historical Society in hopes of having the renovation of the monument completed by 2006. The plaque on the monument also gives credit to the Mount Carmel Lion’s Club for its participation in restoration efforts. The monument was sent off to Ohio for restoration. However, the renovation took longer than expected so the monument was returned to Wabash County in October 2007, and it was rededicated on Veteran’s Day that same year.
Dant says the plan was to rededicate the monument on its 100th Veteran’s Day, but that didn’t work out, and the monument was rededicated on its 101st Veteran’s Day instead. The renovation costed $50,000, and the monument’s original cost was $255 when it was first erected.
The statue is located near the Wabash County Courthouse at 401 North Market Street in Mount Carmel.
This is the tenth of a weekly twenty-one-part series that will help educate about some roadside attractions in the Eyewitness News viewing area. Check in every Sunday at 8 a.m. for the next one! Last week’s installment can be found here.