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General Casimir Pulaski Monument in Patterson Park

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S Linwood Avenue & Eastern Avenue (Street View)

GPS: 39° 17′ 13.47″ N 76° 34′ 36.93″ W

History

After years of fighting Russian occupiers in defense of Poland, Kazimierz Pulaski was eventually forced from his homeland. His role in forming the Bar Confederation, the group responsible for Poland’s first uprising, had cost him is freedom. Sentenced to death, he fled to France where he was recruited by General La Fayette to fight in the American Revolution.

Known as the “father of the American cavalry” for his courageous and intuitive techniques, the soldier of fortune was a friend of Ben Franklin. In 1777, at the Battle of Brandywine, he saved George Washington’s life and was promoted to brigadier general. Due to his inability to speak English he relinquished this post and became America’s “Commander of the Horse,” a position he held until his untimely death. The magnificent relief sculpture depicts General Pulaski and Captain Paul Bentalou leading their cavalry at the Siege of Savannah. Behind the two men are more soldiers and horses in full battle march. Pulaski was shot in the thigh during the fight and died two days later.

Notes

Placed at the southeast corner of Patterson Park, the Pulaski Monument is an imposing combination of art and architecture. The area surrounding the structure is circled by a fence and a long walkway leads to the memorial. Commissioned in 1929, by the General Pulaski Monument Committee, the memorial faced a series of set-backs before it’s final completion in 1951. After collecting and saving funds, primarily from the Polish community, the project stalled when the bank, where the money was kept, went under during the Great Depression. Then, during WWII, bronze became difficult to obtain and inflation increased the cost beyond the estimated amount. It wasn’t until the State of Maryland and the City of Baltimore stepped in to provide additional financial support that the sculpture was completed. Restoration of the monument took place in 2002. Hans Schuler created the relief with A. C. Radziszewski acting as architect.

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Written by monumentcity

April 11th, 2009 at 4:23 pm