Marker text: James Edward Oglethorpe (1696-1785)
The monument in this Square to James Edward Oglethorpe - the great soldier-philanthropist who founded the colony of Georgia - was erected by the State of Georgia, the City of Savannah and various Patriotic Societies. Impressive ceremonies marked its unveiling in 1910.
The 9 foot bronze statue of Oglethorpe is the work of one of America`s foremost sculptors, the celebrated Daniel Chester French. He has depicted the Founder of Georgia in the full dress of a British general of the period. Oglethorpe is portrayed with sword in hand: alert and ready for council or action. At his feet is a palmetto frond. The statue faces southward symbolizing the threat of Spain`s imperial ambitions to the young colony.
The pedestal and base of the monument were designed by Henry Bacon, the eminent New York architect whose collaborations with Daniel Chester French include the Lincoln Memorial. The four
lions at the corners of the lower base hold shields on which appear, respectively, the coat of arms of Oglethorpe and the great seals of the Colony of Georgia, the State, and the City of Savannah. On the pedestal of the monument is carved a portion of the text of the charter which was granted by Parliament in 1732 to `the Trustees for establishing the colony of Georgia in America.`
025-45 Georgia Historical Commission 1957