Leading the charge of the Battle of Quebec, Major General Richard Montgomery died under British fire in 1775. In order to drum up public support for the revolutionary war effort, Benjamin Franklin convinced the Continental Congress to commission the monument, to build support for separation from Britain. Benjamin Franklin championed the monument from its design to its installation, in spite of the intervening war and paltry coffers.On Jan 25th, 1776 Ben Franklin was given 300 pounds sterling to oversee its creation commissioning the French royal sculptor, Jean-Jacques Caffieri.  After Caffieri completed the sculpture in 1777, Franklin had the chutzpa to show it off in Paris while the war still raged. It was shipped to America in 9 lead sealed cases.  The monument was lost first at Le Havre and then in Edenton, North Carolina and did not arrive for about a decade.  In 1787 the Common council recommended that the monument be installed in St Paul’s chapel. Pierre L’Enfant directed the installation.   Montgomery is buried beneath the monument.This was the first piece of commissioned public artwork by the new country.   

Commissioned, Jan 25, 1776
Installed, 1787
Renovation, 2010


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