Boy in Blue
Blue Earth County Civil War Memorial Project
Copyright 2018 © Boy in Blue Memorial Project
Boy in Blue Memorial Project Committee Members:
Bryce O. Stenzel - Chairman
Shelley Harrison, Blue Earth County Historical Society - Secretary
Julie Schrader, Minnesota Heritage Publishing - Treasurer
Genette Carlton, D.A.R.
John Ganey, Lincoln Park Neighborhood Association
Susan Hynes, Blue Earth County Historical Society
David Johnson, Merely Players
Arn Kind, Civil War historian & re-enactor
James Olson, Commander of Lorentz Post 11 American Legion
Lincoln Park is a small triangular piece of land bordered by Broad, Lincoln and Grove Streets in Mankato, MN. The land was made into a park in the mid-1880s. Wishing to perpetuate the memory of the honored dead of the Civil War, the Alexander Wilkin Post, Grand Army of the Republic placed a bronze monument of a Civil War private soldier holding a musket at parade rest on a pedestal in the center of a stone basin. At each corner of the basin were ram’s heads from which water would flow. A dedication ceremony was held on Memorial Day, 1893. The soldier’s monument was called the Boy in Blue. The Boy in Blue fell into disrepair and had to be removed in 1922.
The Boy in Blue Memorial Project Committee is made up of individuals who have dedicated themselves to the job of restoring the Boy in Blue statue and fountain memorial in Mankato’s Lincoln Park to honor and perpetuate the memory of the 682 Blue Earth County, Minnesota citizen soldiers who stepped forward and volunteered during the years 1861-1865 to protect and preserve freedom, their state and the Union.
Our goal to complete the project during the 150th anniversary years of 2011–2015 was realized when the memorial was dedicated on May 30, 2015. All committee men and women involved in this project (on the planning level) are volunteers and accept no compensation for the work they do, which can be daunting at times. We stepped forward and volunteered “as they did 150 years ago” to complete the job at hand and made this memorial a reality.