In celebration of the National Park Service Centennial in 2016, this exhibit showcases one object from Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site, New Hampshire.
This plaster model (maquette) is a positive cast-mold for the obverse of Augustus Saint-Gaudens’ United States Twenty-Dollar Gold Piece (“Double Eagle”). One of a hundred models by Saint-Gaudens, writing on the back indicates this was his final choice. Written in pencil in the artist’s hand: “Latest model sent to mint Dec. 15 can be always be made from this model.”. The maquette features a standing figure of Liberty, modeled after Saint-Gaudens’ Victory from the Sherman Monument. The figure ascends a rock, holding a torch in her right hand, and olive branch in her left. The Capitol building, barely visible in the lower right corner set against the sun’s rays extends outward in the lower half of the background. The outer edge of 46 stars creates a border arcing over “Liberty,” extending to the date “MCMVII” and artist’s monogram.
Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site, SAGA 949
Park museum staff from Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site.
National Park Service, Museum Management Program Staff: Amber Dumler, Stephen Damm, Ron Wilson, and Joan Bacharach