Hermann Monument

"Hermann the German" redirects here. For other similar terms, see Herman the German.
Hermann Monument
Hermann Heights Monument in 2013
Hermann Heights Monument
Location Hermann Heights Park,
New Ulm, Minnesota
Coordinates

44°18′25.52″N 94°28′21.47″W / 44.3070889°N 94.4726306°W / 44.3070889; -94.4726306Coordinates: 44°18′25.52″N 94°28′21.47″W / 44.3070889°N 94.4726306°W / 44.3070889; -94.4726306

Built 1888-1897
Architect Julius Berndt
Architectural style no style listed
Sculptor Alfonz Pelzer
Governing body local
NRHP Reference #

73000965

[1][2]
Added to NRHP October 2, 1973
The Hermann Heights Monument is a statue erected in New Ulm, Minnesota. The statue depicts Hermann the Cheruscan, also known by the Latin name Arminius, but locals refer to the statue as Hermann the German. The only National Register of Historic Places property of its kind in Minnesota, the monument remains an impressive remembrance of German ancestry for many Minnesotans. Visitors to the statue can climb the spiral staircase to an observation platform at the base of the statue, which commands a view of the town and the Minnesota River Valley below.

Significance

This statue commemorates the Germanic victory over the Romans at the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest, a symbol of German patriotism.

While Arminius had been known about in Germany since the rediscovery of the writings of Tacitus in the 15th century, German Protestant intellectuals in the first half of the 18th century christened him "Hermann the German" and promoted his status from that of a local tribal leader with family ties to Rome to that of a hero of German resistance to "Roman" (i.e. Papal) authority; the 19th century added another layer of meaning, namely Pan-German unity and resistance to Revolutionary and Napoleonic Romance-language France.[3] As depicted in this statue, Hermann's eastward gaze and upraised sword signify freedom from Rome. Perhaps not coincidentally, a statue of St. Peter atop the nearby Roman Catholic Cathedral of the Holy Trinity also gazes eastward, with his sword point-down, planted firmly in the ground.

Characteristics

The Hermann Monument has a total height of approximately 102 feet (31 m). Constructed of sheet copper molded over iron, the 27 feet (8.2 m) statue stands on a 70 feet (21 m) iron column encircled by a spiral staircase to the dome, which is supported by 10 iron columns and a Kasota stone base.

History

Following the completion of the similarly commemorative Hermannsdenkmal statue in Detmold, Germany, in 1875, the German-American fraternal order of the Sons of Hermann, under the leadership of Julius Berndt, who headed the New Ulm chapter and was then national secretary of the order, paid for the erection of the American monument.[4] Berndt designed the monument setting, for which the cornerstone was laid in 1888.[5] The statue was created by Alfonz Pelzer of the Wm Mullins company in Salem, Ohio [6] and shipped to New Ulm. It arrived in 1890 and was dedicated in 1897. Structural and cosmetic restoration projects were carried out in 1998 and again in 2004.

The Hermann Heights Monument was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1973. It is the third largest copper statue in the United States after the Statue of Liberty and the "Portlandia" in Portland, Oregon.

The 106th United States Congress (2000) designated the Hermann Monument in New Ulm to be an official symbol of all citizens of German heritage.[5][7]

In August 2009, a small fire at the base of the monument caused officials to question the structural integrity of the monument. As of this time, the monument remains open to the public.

References

External links

  • Hermann Monument, New Ulm, Minnesota
  • Hermann Monument Society
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.