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Commemorative Landscapes of North Carolina
Commemorative Landscapes of North Carolina
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  • Monument Name

    Monument to Cornelius Harnett, Wilmington

  • Type

    Obelisk

  • Subjects

    Revolutionary War

    Historic Political Figures

  • Creator

    M. G. Delahunty, Sculptor

  • City

    Wilmington

  • County

    New Hanover

  • Description

    This monument, which stands in the median of Market Street, takes the shape of a tall, thin granite obelisk. It stands 28 feet 10 inches tall. Harnett's grave is located in St. James Church graveyard, across the street from the obelisk.

    Images: Facing west | East side inscription | South side inscription | North side inscription

  • Inscription

    North Side: CORNELIUS HARNETT / 1723 / 1781 / PATRIOT AND STATESMAN

    East Side:THE CAPE FEAR / FIRST EXPLORED / 1663 / FIRST SETTLEMENT / AT OLD TOWN / 1665 / PERMANENT SETTLEMENT / AT BRUNSWICK / 1725 / WILMINGTON ESTABLISHED / 1733

    South Side: IN HONOR OF / THE HUNDRED AND FIFTY / MEN WHO MADE THE FIRST / ARMED RESISTANCE / IN THE AMERICAN COLONIES / TO THE OPPRESSIVE / STAMP ACT / OF THE / BRITISH PARLIAMENT / FEBRUARY 19TH 1766

    West Side: THE / NORTH CAROLINA SOCIETY / OF THE COLONIAL DAMES / OF AMERICA / HAVE ERECTED THIS / MONUMENT TO THE MEMORY / OF THE COLONIAL / HEROES / OF THE LOWER CAPE FEAR

  • Custodian

    City of Wilmington

  • Dedication Date

    May 2, 1907

  • Decade

    1900s

  • Geographic Coordinates

    34.235670 , -77.944720 View in Geobrowsemap pin

  • Supporting Sources

      "Harnett Obelisk," Art Inventories Catalog, Smithsonian American Art Museum, (accessed May 29, 2012) Link

      "Harnett Obelisk," Cornelius Harnett, (accessed June 26, 2012) Link

      Connor, R. D. W. Cornelius Harnett. An essay in North Carolina history (Raleigh, NC: Edwards & Broughton Printing Company, 1909), (accessed August 22, 2013) Link

      Lennon, Donald R. 1988. "Harnett, Cornelius," NCPEDIA, (accessed August 22, 2013) Link

      North Carolina Society Daughters of the Revolution. The North Carolina Booklet: Great Events in North Carolina History XII: No. 1 (1912), 26, (accessed August, 2013) Link

      Smith, C. Alphonso. "Our Debt to Cornelius Harnett. An Address by C. Alphonso Smith, Ph.D., LL.D., of the University of North Carolina," (Chapel Hill, NC: The University of North Carolina Magazine, 1907), (accessed May 29, 2012) Link

  • Public Site

    Yes

  • Materials & Techniques

    Vermont Barre granite

  • Sponsors

    North Carolina Society of Colonial Dames in America

  • Subject Notes

    Cornelius Harnett, a merchant and statesman from Wilmington, was a leader in the resistance to the Stamp Act and was chairman of the Sons of Liberty. He later represented North Carolina in the Continental Congress.

  • Landscape

    The monument is located in the median of Market Street at its intersection with 4th Street.

  • Approval Process

    The cornerstone was laid April 1906; the monument was fully installed in November of the same year and dedicated on May 2, 1907.

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