Memorial park statue honored by WWI Centennial Commission

Memorial park statue honored by WWI Centennial Commission
Close-up of the wings on Spiritualized Life

The bronze sculpture, “Spiritualized Life,” located in Memorial Park has been officially designated as a “World War I Centennial Memorial” by The United States World War One Centennial Commission and the Pritzker Military Museum & Library through 100 Cites/100 Memorials program, according to the Memorial Park Association.

Spiritualized Life

Spiritualized Life

“Spiritualized Life is arguably the most iconic structure in Jacksonville and the Memorial Park Association is honored to have it recognized in the 100 Cities/100 Memorials program,” said Percy Rosenbloom III, president of the Memorial Park Association.

The memorial statue is among the first 50 announced by the commission. The memorials are located in 28 different states and each will receive a $2,000 matching grant funds towards the restoration and maintenance of these memorials through 100 Cities/100 Memorials program.

The description provided at ww1cc.org/100Memorials reads:

“A sculpture in which six youthful figures appear to be emerging from a swirling globe-shaped mass. The figures are nude and are positioned on a diagonal encircling the globe. Atop the globe is a standing male nude with wings. His proper left arm is stretched out to the side. His proper right arm is stretched up above his head and he holds a branch in his proper right hand. He wears a wreath on his head and is sleek and youthful. The sculpture is in the center of a polygonal concrete basin with spiral ridges converging in the center. Two steps lead from the concrete and brick plaza to the basin.”

Memorial Park honors the 1,220 Floridians – men and women – who died in World War I, and whose names are inscribed on a parchment sealed in a lead box buried beneath the memorial plaza. The statue was sculpted by the renowned artist Charles Adrian Pillars of St. Augustine in 1923. The park was dedicated Christmas Day, 1924.

Memorial Park Association recently established a recovery fund in response to damage caused by Hurricane Irma. Do-nations may be made online at memparkjax.org/donate.

Memorial Park as it appeared in the 1930-1940s. (Photo by Virgil Moore; from the archives of Jacksonville Historical Society)

Memorial Park as it appeared in the 1930-1940s. (Photo by Virgil Moore; from the archives of Jacksonville Historical Society)


By Kate A. Hallock
Resident Community News

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