Little Monuments in Grace Park

As long as our lives endure, may grace now lead them home.
May God continue to shed His grace on the United States of America.

We begin our journey 400 years ago at the south end of N. Allen Avenue at Park Avenue in Richmond, Virginia. Six blocks hence, at Broad Street, we will have walked the span of Virginia History. We will walk with the people who created our history and insofar as possible (with both the advantages and disadvantages of historical perspective), we need to understand their lives, their motivations and their actions as they themselves understood them. Reach for that understanding. Mindful that understanding is neither acceptance nor rejection, praise nor condemnation. It is understanding. It might grow into empathy, even sympathy. As we cannot see the consequences of our own actions over the expanse of time and future generations neither could these our fellow Virginians.  They did not live in history any more than do we. They lived their todays. They were women and men with strengths and weaknesses. Sometimes their better angels soared. Sometimes they fell far short. They ~ like us ~ walk imperfectly forward.

We walk with the figures of history toward the future. We approach each “little monument” from behind, stand with it for its moment in time, listen to his or her story, and move forward in time. There are 25 “little monuments” leading us through 400 years of Virginia History. These “little monuments” are life sized, eye level, simple, understated, integrated into the existing median strip landscape. As each is approached, audio describing the events of that day begins to play. Old school radio players tell the stories of each period — told by individuals, an amalgamation of personal historic accounts and personal stories whenever possible. Like a Ken Burns’ film, an individual’s voice telling the nation’s story.

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