The Hiker by Allan G. Newman


On a small green at the intersections of Exchange, Cottage, Grove, and Spring Streets, a reminder of the Spanish-American War stands tall figure atop a boulder pediment. The statue was erected in 1922, but it was designed and copyrighted by artist and sculptor Allen G. Newman in 1904 to be cast and replicated by Jno. Williams Co. in New York City. The statue brought Newman critical acclaim, and became the official monument of the Veterans of the Spanish American War. And for good reason: American soldiers themselves spent much of that war hiking through the hot, muggy jungles of Pacific and Caribbean islands, often greeting each other casually with a, “hello, hiker!”

Described by respected critic and sculptor Lorado Taft as, “the best bronze soldier in America,” the pose of the soldier is thought to have been inspired by a painting by Frederick Remington, who worked to document the war in Cuba. The statue has been installed in more than 20 locations, including the New York Historical Society in New York City, Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle, Washington, and even as close as Westerly, Rhode Island.

Newman himself was born in New York City in 1875. He studied at the National Academy of Design and for four years (1897-1901) under sculptor John Quincy Adams Ward at that artist’s studio. Among his other works are Triumph of Peace in Piedmont Park, Atlanta, Georgia; Women of the South in Jacksonville Florida; and Grier Monument in Lead, South Dakota. Throughout his life he was a member of the National Sculpture Society, the American Federation of Arts, the American Numismatic Society, the Beaux-Arts Institute of Design, the National Arts Club and was an associate at the National Academy of Design. He died in New York in 1940.

Todd Stong




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