December 14, 2017

Phillips Brooks Statue

Next to the Trinity Church, in Copley Square, is a statue of Phillips Brooks.

Phillips Brooks

Things that I learned about Phillips Brooks and the Statue

  • Phillips Brooks was born on December 13, 1835, in Boston, Massachusetts
  • Attended Boston Latin School and then went to Harvard University in the Fall of 1851, graduated in the class of 1855.
  • Rector of Church of the Holy Trinity, Philadelphia, 1862 - 1869
  • In April 23, 1865, he read a sermon at President's Lincoln Funeral near Philadelphia's Independence Hall. Lincoln was assassinated in Washington, DC eight days earlier.
  • In 1865 he took a trip to the Holy Land. On Christmas Eve he took a horseback trip from Jerusalem to Bethlehem. It was this trip that inspired him to think about a song called "O Little Town of Bethlehem."
  • He officially wrote the "O Little Town of Bethlehem" song in 1868 when he was at the Holy Trinity in Philadelphia.
  • Phillips Brooks introduced Christianity to Helen Keller and then introduced her to Anne Sullivan.
  • One of the few Americans that preached at London's West Minister Abbey
  • Rector of Trinity Church (Copley Square), Boston, 1869 - 1891
  • Was the rector of the Old Trinity Church when it was on Summer Street in 1872. The Church burn down in the Great Boston Fire of 1872.
  • Some people regard the new Trinity Church as a memorial to Bishop Phillips Brooks.
  • Bishop of Massachusetts, 1891 - 1893
  • Died January 23, 1893.
  • The Hall of Fame for Great Americans has a replica of the Daniel Chester French statue of Phillips Brooks. The original can still be seen inside the Trinity Church.

Things that I learned about Phillips Brooks Statue

  • The bronze on marble base statue was unveiled on January 22, 1910
  • The Statue was done by Augustus Saint-Gaudens using Tennessee marble in Vermont.
  • Augustus Saint-Gaudens died before the work started and it was completed by his assistants
  • A committee of thirty-one people were in charge of fundraising and statue design.
  • More than $95,000 was raised for the statue, which was more than needed to build the statue.
  • A case was heard before the State Supreme Court on January 21, 1919, Charles W. Eliot & Others vs Trinity Church, about authorizing to move the statue to the Theological School in Cambridge, as there were some people that didn't like the statue created by Augustus Saint-Gaudens.
  • In court, Charles Eliot argued that a better statue was suited for the location. Bela Pratt created a different statue of Phillips Brooks and many people thought Pratt's statue had a better resemblance to the former preacher.
  • The Massachusetts State Supreme Court sided with the Trinity Church saying that it didn't have any power to force the Trinity Church to move the statue. The court said, "When charitable gifts can be administered according to the directions of the donors, the court "is not at liberty to modify it upon considerations of policy or convenience."
  • The statue done by Bela L. Pratt was placed in the North Andover common in 1925.
  • Today you can't see the statue because of construction going on around the Trinity Church

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