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Charleston, West Virginia: West Virginia Lincoln Melancholia

Abe, wrapped in a robe, was originally sculpted to show his anguish over the Civil War. But the artist died before the statue was erected, and its inscription only mentions that Abe "created the state of West Virginia" -- and looks pretty glum about it.

1900 Kanawha Blvd E., Charleston, WV
I-77/64 exits 99 or 100. Drive south on Hwy 114/Greenbriar St. until you reach the river, then turn left onto Kanawha Blvd. The State Capitol will quickly appear on the left; the statue stands directly in front of it.
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Visitor Tips and News About West Virginia Lincoln Melancholia

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Lincoln Walks At Midnight.

West Virginia Lincoln Melancholia

The nine-foot-tall bronze statue was dedicated on June 20, 1974. It's an enlarged version, by Charleston artist Bernie Wiepper, of a much smaller 1939 sculpture by Fred Torrey titled "Lincoln Walks at Midnight," which commemorated President Abraham Lincoln's deliberations about making West Virginia a state during the Civil War.

[Roger Crook, 04/17/2023]

Statehood somnambulist.

Lincoln Melancholia.

West Virginia Lincoln Melancholia

The capitol building is under construction -- a great time to visit the statue... no one is around!

[Stephen Francia, 06/02/2020]

Melancholy midnight walker.

West Virginia Lincoln Melancholia

Stunning statue of our 16th President standing outside the WV state capitol. It really expresses his sadness. Surrounded by gorgeous fall colors, and he watches over the Kanawha River.

[Ohio Tourist, 10/31/2015]
West Virginia Lincoln Melancholia

Inside the West Virginia Cultural Center (the building on the left side of the State Capitol) is the original statue. It's about half the size, but just as unhappy because it's inside a protective case, in a room of misplaced building pieces from the former State Capitol that burnt down in 1921. (In 1927 the temporary Capitol building also burned.) I'd be depressed, too.

[Jane Geoh, 07/23/2012]

Lincoln Melancholia.

West Virginia Lincoln Melancholia

Located at the front steps of the West Virginia state capitol building.

[Julie Barnes, 05/16/2012]

AKA the "Abraham Lincoln Walking at Midnight" statue, the sad, green-tinged bronze was originally modeled in miniature in 1935 by sculptor Fred M. Torrey based on a poem. Torrey died in 1967, so sculptor Bernard Wiepper up-sized the figure to the 8-ft. tall version for West Virginia in 1974.

Roadside Presidents
Roadside Presidents App for iPhone. Find this attraction and more: museums, birthplaces, graves of the Chief Execs, first ladies, pets, assassins and wannabes. Prez bios and oddball trivia. Available on the App Store.

Nearby Offbeat Places

John Brown's Noose: WV State MuseumJohn Brown's Noose: WV State Museum, Charleston, WV - < 1 mi.
Shoney's Big Boy MuseumShoney's Big Boy Museum, Charleston, WV - 4 mi.
Hidden Figures: Katherine JohnsonHidden Figures: Katherine Johnson, Institute, WV - 9 mi.
In the region:
VP Aaron Burr's Death Mask: Seditionist Island Utopia, Parkersburg, WV - 64 mi.

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