Charles Duncan McIver Statue, Raleigh
The 7.5-foot bronze statue with a 3.5-foot granite pedestal is a monument to education pioneer Charles McIver, a founder and first president of the State Normal and Industrial School for Women (now known as UNC Greensboro). It depicts McIver standing in a dignified manner with a book in his left hand; his right hand rests on his waist. There are four plaques, one on each side of the pedestal.
Images (courtesy of Natasha Smith): Contemporary view | Front inscription | Right inscription | Rear inscription | Left inscription
A duplicate statue stands in Greensboro.
Front: CHARLES DUNCAN / MCIVER / EDUCATIONAL STATESMAN / BORN 27TH SEPTEMBER 1860 / DIED 17TH SEPTEMBER 1906
Right: "PEOPLE - / NOT ROCKS AND RIVERS / AND IMAGINARY BOUNDARY / LINES - MAKE A STATE: AND / THE STATE IS GREAT JUST / IN PROPORTION AS ITS / PEOPLE ARE EDUCATED."
Left: FOUNDER AND FIRST / PRESIDENT OF THE / STATE NORMAL / AND / INDUSTRIAL COLLEGE / FOR WOMEN
Rear: ERECTED BY / THE SCHOOL CHILDREN, / THE TEACHERS / AND HIS OTHER FRIENDS / AND ADMIRERS / A.D. 1911
The State of North Carolina
May 15, 1912
35.780110 , -78.638650 View in Geobrowse
"Charles Duncan McIver Whose Statue Will Be Unveiled in Raleigh on the Capitol Square This Morning at Eleven O'clock [photo]," The News and Observer (Raleigh, NC), May 15, 1912, 1 Link
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"M'Iver Statue Goes to State," The News and Observer (Raleigh, NC), May 15, 1912, 1 Link
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"Thousands Paid Tribute to Charles D. M'Iver," The News and Observer (Raleigh, NC), May 16, 1912, 1 Link
"UNCG to Celebrate Annual Founders Day," October 03, 2016, (accessed December 28, 2019) Link
The Carolinian, Edited by the Senior Class, 1909., (Greensboro, N.C.: North Carolina State Normal and Industrial College, 1909), (accessed July 31, 2013) Link
Berent, Irwin M. The Monuments and Statues on the Capitol Square of North Carolina, (Greenville, NC: East Carolina University Press, 1985)
Bishir, Catherine W. "North Carolina’s Union Square," from “Commemorative Landscapes of North Carolina”, http://docsouth.unc.edu/commland/, (accessed May 15, 2012) Link
Connor, Robert Digges Wimberly. Program of Exercises for North Carolina Day (McIver Day): Friday, December 14, 1906, (Raleigh, NC: State Superintendent of Public Instruction, 1906), (accessed February 8, 2012) Link
Coon, Charles L. "Charles Duncan McIver and His Educational Services, 1886-1906," in Advance Sheets United States Bureau of Education, 1907, (Washington: Government Printing Office, 1908), (accessed May 29, 2012) Link
Smith, Alphonso C. "Charles Duncan McIver, the Educational Statesman," Dissertation, University of North Carolina, 1912
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The First Graduating Class of the North Carolina State Normal and Industrial School, University Archives Photograph Collection, UA 104.4.005, University Archives and Manuscripts, The University of North Carolina at Greensboro, (accessed December 28, 2011) Link
Bronze statue, bronze plaques, and a granite base.
Schoolchildren in North Carolina collected $3,000 for the construction of the monument by North Carolina Day in 1911. The remainder of the monument costs were paid for by the North Carolina Historical Commission. The committee appointed to commemorate McIver, which was led by Chairman James Y. Joyner and included Francis Preston Venable, Col. William H. Osborn, Mrs. Lindsay Patterson, and Josephus Daniels, began to work on creating a monument in honor of McIver soon after his death in 1906.
May 15, 1912
Beginning in 1881, Charles Duncan McIver devoted a quarter of a century to educational reform in North Carolina. After his death on September 17, 1906, friends and fellow educational reformers organized to raise funds for a monument in McIver's honor. The committee chairman, James Joyner, started corresponding with Mrs. McIver and sculptor Frederic Wellington Ruckstuhl about a proposed monument in honor of McIver by August 1910. The North Carolina General Assembly approved the monument's construction and location in the Capital Square on March 7, 1911.
The monument in Capital Square was criticized for inaccurately portraying McIver and for the monument’s representation of the educator. Even the committee felt the monument was more of an embarrassment than an accomplishment.
The monument stands close to the border of the square so that pedestrians and drivers are reminded of McIver's lifework as an educator in North Carolina whenever they pass Capitol Square. The original pedestal raised the sculpture of McIver above spectators; the newer pedestal renders the sculpture more approachable. The monument is located near the monument honoring Charles Brantley Aycock and the George Washington monument.
The McIver monument originally faced Fayetteville Street; it was relocated to face Morgan Street in the late 1920s.
At the UNC Greensboro location, the monument is a gathering place to commemorate Institutional Founders Day at the university.
The North Carolina General Assembly approved of the monument's location on March 7, 1911. It took Ruckstuhl two years to complete the statue and original monument.