Drexel Fountain - by Henry Manger
1881-82 / Restored
Believed to be one of the earliest monuments in the city.
The four-sided statue is decorated with Neptune and harvest Goddess figure.
Upon an elaborate pedestal is the life-size sculpture of Francis M. Drexel..
"A Philadelphia broker and banker who, although may have never set his foot in Chicago, donated a wide driveway through land he owned here with the understanding that it was to be used as a boulevard bearing his name. His sons Francis A. and Anthony Drexel erected a statue in their father's memory."
Life-size sculpture of Francis M. Drexel
The elaborate bronze and granite ornamental fountain includes a figurative sculpture of Francis M. Drexel above an upper basin. A four-sided bronze pedestal below has intricate bas-relief sculptural panels featuring Neptune riding a dolphin, a harvest goddess gathering grain, and other scenes. In 1888, six years after the installation of the monument, the Drexel brothers spent an additional $5000 to enlarge the fountain and provide jets to allow water to run continuously.
In 1999, the PBC made significant repairs to the historic Drexel Fountain as part of a city-wide fountain program. Today, the Drexel Fountain is the oldest existing public sculpture in any of Chicago’s parks.
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