Robeson County Confederate Monument, Lumberton
This colossal monument consists of a tapered pedestal upon which stands a uniformed Confederate soldier holding his gun in a resting position. The pedestal itself contains several inscriptions and images. There are crossed sabers carved onto the north side of the foundation, while the western side that faces the street displays mounted cannons. Above the base is an inscribed image of the Confederate flag.
Stanzas from the poem “The Bivouac of the Dead" by Theodore O’Hara appear on the north face.
Images: 1916 postcard with the historic Robeson County Courthouse | 1940s photographic image
1865 / OUR CONFEDERATE DEAD
North face: 1861 / THIS MARBLE MINSTREL'S VOICELESS STONE / IN DEATHLESS SONG SHALL TELL, / WHEN MANY A VANISHED AGE HATH FLOWN / THE STORY OF HOW THEY FELL. / ON FAME'S ETERNAL CAMPING GROUND, / THEIR SILENT TENTS ARE SPREAD, / AND GLORY GUARDS WITH SOLEMN ROUND / THE BIVOUAC OF THE DEAD.
South face: ERECTED UNDER THE AUSPICES OF / THE UNITED DAUGHTERS OF THE CONFEDERACY / IN LOVING MEMORY OF THE TWO THOUSAND / CONFEDERATE SOLDIERS OF ROBESON COUNTY.
May 10, 1907
34.620060 , -79.008230 View in Geobrowse
"Monument at Lumberton," The Robesonian (Lumberton, NC), May 6, 1907, 8 Link
"Robeson County Confederate Memorial - Lumberton, NC - American Civil War Monuments and Memorials," www.waymarking.com, (accessed November 29, 2019) Link
"Robeson County Court House, Lumberton, N.C." Durwood Barbour Collection of North Carolina Postcards (P077), North Carolina Collection Photographic Archives, Wilson Library, UNC-Chapel Hill Link
Butler, Douglas J. North Carolina Civil War Monuments, An Illustrated History, (Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Company, Inc., 2013), 225
Douglas, Donnie. "Confederate Soldier in Downtown Lumberton Vandalized," Robesonian (Lumberton, NC), www.robesonian.com, September 24, 2017, (accessed October 4, 2017) Link
Folder 1269: Lumberton: Robeson County Courthouse, circa 1940s: Scan 1, in the North Carolina County Photographic Collection #P0001, North Carolina Collection Photographic Archives, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Link
McAllister, J. A. "Report of Monument Fund," The Robesonian (Lumberton, NC), May 6, 1907, 8 Link
Tyner, Kenneth Blake. Robeson County in Vintage Postcards, (Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing, 2005)
United Daughters of the Confederacy, North Carolina Division. Minutes of the Tenth Annual Convention of the United Daughters of the Confederacy, North Carolina Division, Held at Durham, N.C., October 10th, 11th and 12th 1906, (Newton, NC: Enterprise Job Print., 1907), 107, (accessed September 3, 2012) Link
United Daughters of the Confederacy, North Carolina Division. Minutes of the Twenty-Fourth Annual Convention of the United Daughters of the Confederacy North Carolina Division, Held at New Bern, N.C., October 13, 14, 15, 1920 (Charlotte, N.C.: Queen City Printing Company, 1920), 147, (accessed September 10, 2012) Link
“Confederate Monument,” The Robesonian (Lumberton, NC), May 13, 1907, 1 Link
“Details of Monument,” The Robesonian (Lumberton, NC), February 21, 1907
“Notice to Subscribers to the Confederate Monument,” The Robesonian (Lumberton, NC), April 25, 1907, 1 Link
“Theodore O’Hara’s 'Bivouac of the Dead,” U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, National Cemetery Administration, www.cem.va.gov, (accessed July 31, 2016) Link
Marble statue, granite shaft
Robeson County Veterans Association
The total cost was $4,000. Much of that was raised by public subscription with frequent reports in the local papers of who had donated. Donors promised at least $2,774.81 to fund the monument. At least $1,918 of these subscriptions were actually collected. Up to $750 was to be contributed by Robeson County to complete the monument.
The monument was still missing the statue, which had not arrived yet, that tops the monument for the dedication ceremony on Confederate Memorial Day (May 10) in 1907. It was latter added to the base. Governor Glenn gave a speech at the dedication and the crowd was estimated at 7000 people.
“The Bivouac of the Dead" by Theodore O’Hara is an elegiac poem that expresses feelings of melancholy, sorrow or lamentation—especially for a person or persons who are dead. Although O’Hara wrote “Bivouac” as a remembrance of the many casualties suffered in the Mexican War by the Second Kentucky Regiment of Foot Volunteers it seemed to capture the attention of a patriotic nation after the Civil War. It began to appear in various forms at Civil War battlefields and cemeteries across the county, including the first monument placed in North Carolina at Cross Creek Cemetery in Fayetteville, in Lenoir, and Goldsboro.
This monument was among several that was vandalized after the death of a counter-protester, Heather Heyer, at a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia on August 14, 2017 and after President Donald Trump expressed his opposition to the removal of Confederate memorials.
The monument is located in front of the County Courthouse at 500 N Elm Street, Lumberton, NC 28358.
It faces west.
Right behind the courthouse building there is a paved courtyard located at the corner of N. Court Square Street and N. Chestnut Street. It includes the Robeson County War Memorial and plaques to General John Willis, George Washington Tree, Colonel Thomas Robeson, and George G. McPhail, Jr. Also behind the courthouse to the left of the courtyard is an Appalachian Indian Road (Boone Trail Highway) plaque attached to a large arrowhead.
A 1939 bronze plaque to Robeson County War Dead is located inside the courthouse. It replaced a wooden painted tablet placed in March 1919.
The memorial stands atop and in between two stairs leading to the main entrance.
The old Robeson County courthouse building was torn down and rebuilt, first in 1932 and then 1977. All three buildings kept the same location, 500 N. Elm Street in Lumberton, NC.