Reprinted from Passaic County Historical Society Newsletter
Volume 1973 / No. 1
The morning was dark and stormy. A light drizzle fell, and many an expectant heart was filling with disappointment in view of the inclement character of the weather. The date, November 26, 1868, was Thanksgiving Day.
Informal meetings of committees in charge of festivities were held at an early hour, and it was generally resolved by each to postpone the proposed celebration. About half past ten, however, there was a change in the weather. The wind veered around sharply, clouds broke away, and signs of clearing were manifest. Plans for the festivities were resumed–parades, excursions, fairs, dinners, and the laying of the cornerstone for the Soldiers and Sailors Monument.
The first event on the program was the Fireman’s parade and reception of the Number 4 steamer. Originally, the parade line was scheduled to form at eight o’clock in the morning. However, at that hour, it had been raining furiously, and although several of the companies were on hand, it was resolved to postpone the affair until the weather cleared. When it did, each company intuitively marshaled its forces and proceeded to the appointed starting point at the corner of Mill and John Streets. After the Firemen’s parade, the new steamer was taken to the raceway, and a good trail proved her all that she represented.
The next major event in the day’s activities was the ceremony of the laying of there cornerstone for the Soldiers and Sailors Monument located on Table Rock by the Great Falls in the Totowa section of Paterson.
The line of march for this ceremony was formed on Colt Street at Market Street and was as follows:
Marshall and Aids
Soldiers and Sailors Monument Association of Passaic County
Orator and General John COCHRANE of New York
Chosen Board of Freeholders of Passaic County
Mayor and Alderman of the City of Paterson
The Board of Education
Passaic Water Company
U.S., State, County, and City Officials
Clergy, Press, and legal professions
Veteran soldiers and sailors under Capt. Wm. BUCKLY
New Jersey Rifle Battalion Under Major TAYLOR
Kearney Rifle Corps. under Capt. MILNE
Fire Department of the City of Paterson
Under Chief and Assistant Engineer
Civic societies by seniority of organization
I.O. of O.F.
Sons of Erin
St. Patrick’s Temperance Benevolent Society
Catholic Young Men’s Association
Webster’s Literary Association
St. John’s Temperance Society
Young Mens Christian Association
Other civic societies
The route of the march to the Monument Heights went as follows: The parade proceeded through Congress to Main Street, across the West Street Bridge to Water Street to Hamburg Avenue up to Union Avenue. The parade then turned left on Albion Avenue to Totowa Avenue through the Passaic Water Company grounds up to the Heights.
The procession formed around the base of the Monument in the following order: The Monument Association stood on the east face, the ladies on the platform; the press on the platform; the County and City officials on the east face; the military on the south face; the firemen on the west face, and the civic societies on the north face.
All in all, about 1,500 to 2,000 people were gathered. A rope had been stretched around the base of the monument, leaving an enclosure of about 150 to 200 feet in diameter, which was kept clear by a guard of militia.
The ceremonies were opened by a prayer by the Rev. John H. DURYEA, D.D., pastor of the Second Reformed Church, located on Temple and Water Streets. Some national airs were then played by one of the bands, after which the cornerstone was laid by Rev. Wm. H. HORNBLOWER, D.D., pastor of the First Presbyterian Church. Rev. HORNBLOWER stated that as a representative of the people of Passaic County, he laid the stone in the name of God, and hoped the divine architect would approve of the deed, that it was just and right that a monument should be erected to the memory of those who had fallen in battle and to transmit to future generations the evidence of our love for our county and its people.
Placed in the cornerstone were many documents. The following is a list of the articles:
A roll of Army and Navy Veterans Association with names and photographs of officers and members
History of Monument Association with names and photographs of members and also of the architect of the Heights
Resolution of the Common Council and names of other officers and members
Resolution of the Board of Freeholders and names of officers and members
Decision of the City and County attorneys
Deed of ground, by Passaic Valley Water Company
Design of the monument
Copies of the Paterson Guardian 13, 14, and 16 of November, 1868
Description of Paterson
Copy of Engraving by R.H. NORRIS
All the different coins and currency of the United States
Badge of Army and Navy Veterans Association
Badges of different Clubs
Copy of Seal of the Association
Ulster County Gazette, year 1800 with a description of death and funeral of General Washington
Paterson Guardian of November 25 and Press of 24 and 25
New York daily papers
Badge of mourning of Abraham Lincoln and card, by Miss Mary A. PATON
Pictures of Andersonville Prison by Oliver B. FAIRBANKS
Harpers and Frank Leslies Pictorials
Cape May Wave
Army and Navy Journal
American cents of 1791 and 1802, and 1/2 cent of 1807 by Jas. INGLIS
Roll and bylaws of engine Co. No. 3 of Paterson
Two photographs of Passaic Falls by Reid
Package of coins from A. HENDERSON, Geo. PERRY, and John J. WARREN
Chain of coin from Mrs. J.W. DREW
Spanish coin of 1725 by Miss Susie CLOSE
Confederate money by J.W. DREW
Coin from Mrs. Jane PARKER
Register of New Jersey Vol’s.
Copy of resolution of 41st Congress making appropriation of Cannon for Monument
Record of Kearny Rifles of Paterson
Following the sealing of the stone, the band played “Hail Columbia.” A benediction was then delivered by the Rev. John H. DURYEA. The various groups and citizens formed in the parade line and proceeded down the hill to the other festivities of the day.
The Monument was built in 1870 The design of the edifice was a square shaft built largely of brown sandstone with Italian marble tablets inlaid to receive the names of those heroes whose loss it commemorates. On the one side it the New Jersey coat of arms with sculptured flags and cannon. On the other side was the Passaic County coat of arms. From the base, a square tapering shaft rose, traversed by several bands of Nova Scotia stone, on which appeared the names of battles in which Passaic County was represented. They include Antietam, Fredericksburg, Fair Oaks, South Mountain, Williamsburgh, Vicksburg, Petersburg, Spottsylvania, Roanoke, Gettysburgh, and Mission Ridge. The column of the monument was finished with a semi-Corinthian capital on top of which appeared the statue of Captain Hugh C. IRISH, Company K, Thirteenth Regiments NJ Vols., then located on Broadway in Paterson. Capt. Irish was killed September 17, 1862 while fighting the battle of Antietam. The figure, eight feet in height and made of Italian marble is in full uniform and equipment, looking south.
The Monument was originally under the care of the Passaic County Board of Freeholders, but by 1920, the marks of time and the results of vandalism caused the menders of the Grand Army of the Republic to petition the Board to have it moved. A campaign was started to have the Monument not only moved but rebuilt in a place that would be safer and more easily accessible. The Freeholders agreed to take charge, rebuilding it of granite, and moving it to Eastside Park (Paterson).
The rededication ceremonies took place on Memorial Day, 1922.
The restored memorial is made of “Rock of Ages” granite and weights more than 100 tons. It stands 48 feet high, and the statue on top has been waterproofed by a special process which will enable it to last as long as the granite itself.
Below the names of the battles are four bronze tablets with appropriate inscriptions.
On one is an excerpt from Lincoln’s Second Inaugural address which reads: “with malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right, let us strive on to firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in to bind up the nations wounds; to care for him, who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan: to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves with all nations.”
Another is headed “Honor The Brave.” Under the heading is, “The War of 1861-1865 was waged successfully for preservation of the Union as a nation, one and indivisible, now and for all time.”
The third reads: “Passaic County Soldiers and Sailors Monument to commemorate the services and record the names of her soldiers and sailors who gave their lives in the War for the Union.”
The last reads: “This monument, erected in 1922, under the supervision of the Board of Chosen Freeholders of the County of Passaic, is a replica of the original Monument erected in 1870 on Monument Heights, Passaic Falls, by the Passaic County Soldiers and Sailors Monument Association, organized Sept. 17, 1867.”
Following is a listing of those veterans inscribed on the Soldiers and Sailors Monument at Eastside Park, Paterson:
And’r. H. ACKERMAN
Nath’l. L. BARNES
Wm. C. BEGGS
Wm. M. BELL
Geo. A. BERDAN
Wm. J. BERESFORD
Alfred J. BLANCHARD
David A. BOGERT
John C. BOGERT
Wm. C. BOONE
And’r. J. BROEGHTON
Walter W. BROWN
Syl’v. B. BURNHAM
Geo. W. COLE
John G. COLLINS
John E. DAVENPORT
Geo. W. DAVIDSON
Mart. V.B. DEMAREST
John H. DOREMUS
Peter J. DOREMUS
Matt J. DOUGHERTY
Geo. W. DOUGLAS
Joseph J. DREW
Wm. J. EVANS
Peter B. FENWICK
John W. FLAVELL
John K. FRANK
Eben E. FREELAND
John H. FREELAND
Geo. W. GARRIBRANT
Jas. I. GARRIBRANT
Rob’t. A. GARRISON
Wm. E. HALSTEAD
Henry M.D. HART
Henry J. HENDRICKS
Hugh C. IRISH
Philip J.W. JEBB
John M. JUNERNEY
Fred’k. C. KING
Wm. MC CLOUD
Alex’r. MC GILL
John MC GOVERN
Ew’d. MC KIERMAN
John MC LAUGHLIN
John MC MULLEN
Sydney K. MONKS
Jessie B. MORRIS
Rich’d. R. MOSLEY
Joh’thn OLIVER, Jr.
Dav. H. OSTRANDER
Jas. D. PITTENGER
Lew’n. J. PROBERT
Neh’mh. J. PULIS
John D. REDNER
Chas. A. RYERSON
Peter M. RYERSON
John C. SCOTT
Wm. H. SHIPPEE
James SMITH, Jr.
John N. STERLING
Martin VAN BUREN
Garret H. VAN DIEN
Isaac VAN GIESON
John VAN HOUTEN
Jos. H. VAN HOUTEN
Chas. VAN ORDEN
Rich’d. VAN ORDEN
And’w. G. VAN RIPER
H.P.J. VAN VLADACKEN
Geo. E. VESCEILUS
John B. WHITE
Jas. S. WILLIAMS
John E. WOODWARD
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