Wednesday, August 31, 2011

the other angel

Recently, i posted essays on Lake View Cemetery (a, b). It is a place that can be photographed repeatedly. It is the Who was Who in Cleveland; beyond that, it has had some serious landscaping. One can, rightfully, consider it a sculpture garden.
I have seen people outside the area (Cleve., O.), and outside the country interested in one particular piece: the Haserot bronze angel, created by Herman Matzen, and called by some, 'the Angel of Death Victorious' [i have not yet discovered the source]. Some just call it the 'seated angel', or the 'crying angel'. There is also a Haserot stone woman in the cemetery by Joseph Carabelli. This verdigris vision is right below the Hanna mausoleum. Hanna was the man who bought, and stole the 1896 presidential election for McKinley from Bryan. That mausoleum is marked by a worn rubber mat on the sidewalk leading to it.

The other angel that is popular was sculpted by James Earle Fraser. Fraser did many American historical statues (Franklin, Patton, Lincoln). The buffalo and Indian head nickel was his design. John Milton Hay died in 1905 as the Secretary of State. He had married a daughter of the railroad, and steel mill, magnate, and bridge architect, Amasa Stone of Cleveland. In 1916 Fraser carved a monument of soft, fossil bearing, limestone.

Hay created the 'Open Door Policy' in China. The beginnings of American imperialism, was seriously begun in the administrations of McKinley, and Theodore Roosevelt. US troops joined in the quelling of the Boxer Rebellion in China. The US fought Spain for their remaining overseas empire. The Caribbean was becoming an American lake. Hay wrote to Theo. Roosevelt that the Spanish war was "a splendid little war".
It is an odd, martial angel with a stele quoting James iii. 18, “And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.” The stone is not strong enough to withstand the rain, and snow of Cleveland, and is being washed away. The original, sword shaft has been replaced by concrete cement, and is noticeably different in shade, and texture. The pedestal is of granite and is mostly covered by blue spruce, which greatly adds scenic ornament.

It is a naked, almost, burly Saint Michael. The wings are there, but not prominent when viewed directly. He is helmeted, and is gazing downwards with arms crossed, expressionless. He is more of a gladiatorial guard than Christian angel.

1 comment:

  1. Great post. Nice shots of two really fine monuments and some excellent commentary and background. Thanks.