In the 1920’s Paul Goodloe McIntire, Charlottesville’s greatest benefactor, gave to what was then a small farming town an extraordinary series of gifts. Among them were four monumental sculptures executed by several of the finest artists of the time. These works, all of which have earned placement on the National Register of Historic Places and Virginia’s Historic Register, depict General Robert E Lee; General Stonewall Jackson; Meriwether Lewis, William Clark, and Sacagewea; and George Rogers Clark.
In the park McIntire donated specifically to display him, General Stonewall Jackson is mounted on his horse Little Sorrel. Bronze horse and rider stand atop a granite pedestal, with chiseled on the front a young man brandishing a sword and shield and a woman praying. They are Valor and Faith—words that sum up Jackson. Sculptor Charles Keck called it his best work, and it is now ranked among the foremost equestrian statues in the world. For more information about the statue of Jackson click here.
City Council voted February 6, 2017 to reconfigure the park deliberately to obscure him.
General Robert E. Lee is mounted on his horse Traveler. Holding his hat in his hand this is said to be Lee after Appomatox: dignity in defeat, the postwar Lee who advocated reconciliation between north and south, and between whites and the newly freed blacks.
Originally designed by Henry Shrady, who died with the work incomplete, sculptor Leo Lentelli took over. He measured what was left of Lee’s uniform —and the remains of Traveler — to get the proportions exactly right. McIntire also bought and donated a park to the City specifically to display this sculpture. For more information about the statue of Lee click here.