Soon after the Vicksburg National Military Park was established in 1899, the nation’s leading architects and sculptors were commissioned to honor the soldiers that had fought in the campaign. The park’s earliest state memorial was dedicated in 1903, and over 95 percent of the monuments that followed were erected prior to 1917. An aging Civil War veteran who hastened to Vicksburg to see the resulting works was so impressed that he aptly described Vicksburg National Military Park as “the art park of the world.” The work of commemoration has continued sporadically since 1917, and today, over 1370 monuments, tablets and markers dot the park landscape. Unfortunately, some of these are on former park lands or are not situated along the tour road.
Six of the park’s state memorials feature the figures of women. The first along the tour road is the Minnesota Memorial at Stop 3. The monument was dedicated on May 24, 1907, at a cost of $24,000. The 90-foot white granite obelisk was constructed by the Van Ambringe Granite Company of Boston, Massachusetts. The granite stereobate (stereo-bait’) or foundation, of the monument has the word “Minnesota” symbolically sculpted into its north and south sides.