Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Stories from a Small Town

This is the Mound in my hometown.

Photographer Bill Eyster took this photo on Saturday evening after the big snowfall. He was on his way home from a photo shoot and said he just had to stop and take this photo.

This Civil War monument sits in the middle of our town and the commerce of this small town spins around this relic. The monument is decorated every Christmas and has music piped out of the base for folks shopping or just strolling by. The music used to play all night long until a few folks who lived in the downtown complained about the tune. The rest of us love it!

When our ball teams or choirs or bands come home after returning from competition they always circle the mound and honk (more than once!) Actually they go around several times!

I always make the circle myself when coming home. The mound is our welcome mat to visitors.

Here is the wikipedia entry:
The most popular landmark in Angola is the Monument, referred to by locals as "The Mound" or the 'Circle'.
Built in 1917 by E.M. Heltzer, The Monument commemorates the Civil War. It has statues for all four branches of the military. On top is the statue of Columbia, facing east. It cost $17,000 in 1917, over $1,000,000 if it were built today. The Monument is the center of many town celebrations and festivities. It was unveiled on Thursday, September 13, 1917 at 1PM to much fanfare. On the Monument are plaques with the names of the 1,278 men from Steuben County who fought in the war. Per capita, more men from Steuben County enlisted for the war than any other county in Indiana. The monument underwent a renovation in 1993 and was re-dedicated during Fourth of July ceremonies.

I was asked by Mayor Selman to do the dedication of Columbia in 1993. A scaffold was built for me so I could be seen from all four directions. I told her story and sang a few songs. I spent weeks sitting on the mound, waving to friends, and trying to imagine times gone by. It was the biggest honor ever given to me by my town.

Come on by and visit, take a spin around the mound, and then come on over for supper.


Vickie P. said...

How did it come to be called the mound?

Robb said...

What a huge honor it must've been to be asked to give the dedication!

Lou Ann Homan said...

Hi Vicki, I checked with one of our town historians and asked her that question. She wasn't sure, but that it came to because it was the watering hole for the horses in days of yore. The small shops were around the small lake and folks coming in from rural areas tied up their horses to hitching posts around the mound for watering. I do not believe it has anything to do with burial grounds, although we have plenty of those.

Robb, I cannot begin to tell you how wonderful it was to dedicate Columbia. The town took her down for repair and oh how we missed her! I spent much time sitting out on the mound during my time of research. Folks would honk when they drove by! In the summer the garden club plants flowers all around the edges.