Lincoln statue.

Lincoln with Dumb Hat and Nude Boy

Field review by the editors.

Bennington, Vermont

There are several contenders for the title of Least-Flattering Lincoln Statue, but this might be the winner. It features a nine-foot-tall, green-with-age Abe with his stovepipe hat pulled down over his eyebrows, standing rigid as a robot. In front of him kneels a topless woman (Faith) and stands a nude boy (Hope) with Abe's bony hand grasping the kid's head like a cantaloupe.

Vermont sculptor Clyde du Vernet Hunt displayed this statue outside the Illinois Pavilion at the 1939 New York World's Fair (He came from a wealthy and well-connected family). The sculpture disappeared after the Fair until it was donated to the museum in 1949, which put it on display in front of the building (Hunt had died in 1941). In the winter, ever since, snow has piled comically atop Abe's hat.

In October 2021, the Lincoln statue was vandalized by unknown assailants using red spray paint and marking the number "38" on his chest. While Lincoln was the 16th President (Gerald Ford was 38th), 38 refers to the number of Sioux fighters sentenced to execution by a military commission for murder or rape in late 1862. Lincoln commuted the sentences of 264 of the Sioux, and granted one of the condemned a reprieve, but the other 38 were hanged.

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Lincoln with Dumb Hat and Nude Boy

Bennington Museum

Address:
75 Main St., Bennington, VT
Directions:
In the gated front courtyard of the Bennington Museum, which is on the west edge of town on the south side of Hwy 9/W. Main St. Access to statue is free, but only when the gate is open during museum hours.
Hours:
Open 10-5. Closed W. Gated after hours. (Call to verify) Local health policies may affect hours and access.
Phone:
802-447-1571
RA Rates:
Worth a Detour
Save to My Sights

Nearby Offbeat Places

Tallest Thing in VermontTallest Thing in Vermont, Bennington, VT - < 1 mi.
World's Tallest Ladderback ChairWorld's Tallest Ladderback Chair, Bennington, VT - < 1 mi.
Opulent Children's Play HouseOpulent Children's Play House, North Bennington, VT - 4 mi.
In the region:
Feegee Mermaid, Dueling Frogs, Grafton, VT - 36 mi.

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