Rejected design for the Statue of Freedom

Title

Rejected design for the Statue of Freedom

Description

This design of the Statue of Freedom was rejected for its reference to slavery. It was one of three designs developed by sculptor Thomas Crawford for the top of the Capitol dome. In 1856, he proposed a statue with a “Liberty Cap.” This style of cap was seen on images of "Liberty" during the American Revolution and was inspired by caps given to slaves in Ancient Rome at their emancipation. Jefferson Davis, Secretary of War at the time, strongly opposed the proposal. Davis, a slaveowner and later named President of the Confederate States of America, rejected any design that seemed critical of slavery.

Creator

Source

Architect of the Capitol. View original.

Date

1855

Coverage

Type

Unbuilt

Description

This design of the Statue of Freedom was rejected for its reference to slavery. It was one of three designs developed by sculptor Thomas Crawford for the top of the Capitol dome. In 1856, he proposed a statue with a “Liberty Cap.” This style of cap was seen on images of "Liberty" during the American Revolution and was inspired by caps given to slaves in Ancient Rome at their emancipation. Jefferson Davis, Secretary of War at the time, strongly opposed the proposal. Davis, a slaveowner and later named President of the Confederate States of America, rejected any design that seemed critical of slavery.

Creator

Thomas Crawford

Date

1855

Coverage

1830-1859

Source

Architect of the Capitol. View original.