The Bartholomew County Memorial for Veterans

A most remarkable scene will greet you when you observe the south lawn of the Bartholomew County Courthouse in Columbus, Indiana. From the sidewalk you will see a series of tall stone columns. This is the Bartholomew County Memorial for Veterans. There are 25 columns, each 40 feet tall and positioned in a 5X5 foot grid. Recessed lights are positioned between the columns. Each column is rock cut Indiana limestone set on black granite.

The memorial is designed to be a tribute to those living and dead who answered our nation’s call during the twentieth century conflicts. It was dedicated in 1997. There are 156 names of local veterans engraved on the smooth sides of the columns. In addition to the names, there are inscriptions of letters sent home from veterans from their places overseas during the wars. Many of these were the last letters written home. Below the letters the date and places where they lost their lives are also recorded.

This memorial is really eye catching and remarkable to see. Allow for enough time to read the names engraved on the columns. Allow even more time to read the letters. So many of them are the last letters that the servicemen wrote home before they perished in combat. This is a most emotional memorial that brings home the gratitude you must express for our servicemen and women. Prepare to shed some tears.

The historic Bartholomew County Courthouse in Columbus, Indiana

Bartholomew County, Indiana is south of Indianapolis and is known for its architecture, public art and well known and long running industry. Columbus is the county seat, and thus is home to the County Courthouse. This striking edifice was designed by noted Indiana architect Isaac Hodgson. The building was constructed from 1871–1874 at the cost of (then)$250,000. The courthouse was put on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979.

A panorama view

The following Court House description is from Wikipedia: It is a three-story, Second Empire style red-brick building trimmed in limestone. It features a mansard roof, corner pavilions, Corinthian-order portico, and a six-level clock tower. The clock tower is 154 feet tall. A six-inch thick, 10-ten clock bell was installed in 1875. The clock’s weighted mechanism were replaced with an electric motor in 1940 and a 900-pound weight fell.

We visited on a Saturday, so the building was closed. It would be interesting to see inside this county government building.

Springer Cemetery , Elizabethtown, Indiana

Elizabethtown is a tiny berg with a little over 500 residents near Columbus, Indiana. The Springer Cemetery is about a mile and a half from town. The first burial was of George Springer in 1857.

The pretty chapel in the cemetery

Civil War veteran and wife

An Indiana Civil War veteran with military headstone

Springer Cemetery is filled with Civil War vets among the other civilians resting here in this small country cemetery. The chapel lends a feeling of spiritual calm and memory of those resting here.


“Large Arch” public art in Columbus Indiana

Columbus, Indiana is noted for its architecture and public art displays. One of the most impressive art pieces is a huge bronze creation titled Large Arch. It was installed in 1971, and was a gift from the J. Irwin Miller family to the library. It is located on the plaza outside of the Cleo Rogers Memorial Library. (J. Irwin Miller founded the Cummins Corporation.)

Library is the brick building in the left background

The following description is from a Wikipedia article: “Large Arch is an abstract bronze sculpture of an arch created by Henry Moore, an English artist. The shape of the sculpture suggests human hip and leg bones, while the negative space on the interior of the arch suggests an abstracted human torso with head. It is 19 feet 6 inches tall. The width of the sculpture at its base is 12 feet 3 inches wide, but is 13 feet 9 inches at its widest at the top. While the sculpture is hollow, it weighs approximately 11,000 lb (5,000 kg).”

This massive sculpture will certainly catch your eye. In the warmer weather people do enjoy the plaza next to the library.