Tuesday, March 02, 2021

Chicago monuments under assault, Part Five, John A. Logan

Logan statue in Grant Park
"Not without thy wondrous story, Illinois, Illinois, 
Can be writ the nation’s glory, Illinois, Illinois, 
On the record of thy years, Abraham Lincoln’s name appears, 
Grant and Logan, and our tears, Illinois, Illinois, 
Grant and Logan, and our tears, Illinois." 
Illinois' state song, "Illinois." 

Just three people are named in Illinois' official state song, appropriately named "Illinois." Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant, and John A. Logan. And amazingly, each man has a statue on the Chicago Monuments Project's "review" status. Nearly 450 other monuments, plaques, and reliefs are not "in review." Hmm.

Oh, there is one clarification: Lincoln, you know, the Land of Lincoln fella, who defeated the slave-holding Confederate States during the Civil War, has five statues on the naughty list of the Chicago Monuments Project.

After serving during the Mexican War Logan, whose nickname was "Black Jack" because of his dark looks, was elected as a congressman in a southern Illinois district.

As I wrote in a blog post ten years ago:
Civil War General John A. Logan is largely forgotten, but in his day he was a major political figure. At the outbreak of the the Civil War, Logan was a congressman from southern Illinois. In his Personal Memoirs, Ulysses S. Grant wrote of the questionable loyalty of Logan's constituents, which Grant said consisted of "people [originally] from the Southern States, and at the breaking out of secession they sympathized with the South." Grant added about Logan, "As he went in politics, so his district was sure to go."
Logan went with the Union. He served with Grant at Fort Donelson [where he was badly wounded] and Vicksburg, and also fought at the first Manassas and Corinth. In late 1864, Grant became disenchanted with General George H. Thomas' performance in the Nashville campaign, he sent Logan to relieve him, but Thomas routed the Confederates before he arrived.

Logan switched to the Republican Party and campaigned for Lincoln in his reelection effort. After the war Logan became commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, a fraternal organization of Union  veterans, from that post he was instrumental in the creation of the Memorial Day holiday.

Three times Logan served as a US senator from Illinois and in 1884 he was the Republican nominee for vice president. According to Encylopedia Britannica, "By 1886 he was widely considered the front-runner to become the 23rd U.S. president before he succumbed to the effects of rheumatism and died in his Washington, D.C., home on December 26, 1886."

Logan was just the seventh person whose body lay in state inside the US Capitol.

The same source also says of Logan that he was "an advocate of African American civil rights" during his time in the Senate. But the Chicago Monuments Project ignores that fact and writes of Logan on his monument page, "In his early career in politically-held office [My note: can't these dopes write better?], he allied with Democrat Stephen A. Douglas, and participated in legislation directed towards halting black migration and settlement in Illinois."

Douglas died in 1861 and Logan's views and actions evolved into better ones. 

Man oh man, what the hell is wrong with these people? 

As I wrote many years ago, "John A. Logan is "largely forgotten." That is enough reason for me why his statue should remain in Grant Park.

Logan's bronze statue is a collaboration of Augustus Saint-Gaudens and Alexander Phimister Proctor.

To comment on the Logan statue and the forty others "under review" please visit the Chicago Monuments Project "Feedback page." Please be courteous but firm in your comments.

If you Tweet this post--and I urge you to do so--please use the #ChicagoMonuments hashtag.

Earlier posts

Related posts of mine at Da Tech Guy

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