The Battle Story (The Returned Soldier)

Larkin Goldsmith MeadModeled ca. 1863-65, carved ca. 1865-66

Chrysler Museum of Art

Chrysler Museum of Art

Imagine the heroism and suffering this soldier witnessed during the Civil War. Newspaper illustrations and battlefield photography made the brutality of this conflict frightfully real to all Americans, but many deemed these scenes too gruesome for fine art. Larkin Mead’s Battle Story presents instead a comforting image of a survivor reunited with his daughter and narrating his adventures. The war is present, but Mead’s statue hopes for a peaceful resolution and a return to the pleasures of family life.


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  • Title: The Battle Story (The Returned Soldier)
  • Creator: Larkin Goldsmith Mead
  • Date: Modeled ca. 1863-65, carved ca. 1865-66
  • Provenance: Private collection, Croton, N.Y.; [The Den of Antiquity, Mamaroneck, N.Y., by ca. 1960]; James G. Gordon, Mamaroneck, N.Y., ca. 1960-64; [The Den of Antiquity, Mamaroneck, N.Y.]; [United Housewrecking, Stamford, Conn.]; [Paul Gabel, Nyack, N.Y., after 1973]; James H. Ricau, Piermont, N.Y.; Gift of James H. Ricau and Chrysler Museum of Art Purchase, 1986.
  • Physical Dimensions: 83 3/8 x 31 7/8 x 42 5/8 in. (211.8 x 81 x 108.3 cm)
  • Credit Line: Gift of James H. Ricau and Museum purchase
  • Type: Sculpture
  • Medium: Marble