Today, February 12th, marks what would be the 205th birthday of our 16th U.S. President Abraham Lincoln! If you happen to be strolling through Union Square Park today, stop by the 16th Street transverse to wish him well! To celebrate, we’re giving you 5 fun facts about Honest Abe (and his statue in the park) that you may or may not have known:
1. The bronze statue of Abraham Lincoln in Union Square Park was modeled by sculptor Henry Kirke Brown (who also modeled the statue of George Washington on the South Plaza of the park).
2. The statue was dedicated on September 16, 1870 and originally stood on the southwest corner of Union Square and surrounded by a bronze fence rail. Nearby was the intersection commonly known as “Dead Man’s Curve.”
4. Lincoln was also an inventor; he is the only U.S. President to hold a patent. U.S. Patent No. 6469 details the invention of an inflatable bellows system meant to improve the navigation of boats in shallow waters.
5. Union Square Park was completely redesigned in 1930 to accommodate new subway construction. During this time, the Lincoln statue was relocated to the north side of the park where it stands today. Every Saturday at 2 PM, there is a FREE historic walking tour (sponsored by the Union Square Partnership) that meets in front of the Abraham Lincoln statue. Stop by this weekend to learn more about our historic neighborhood!