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  • Writer's pictureJustin Sparks

A Monument of Virtue: The Major Ripley Arnold Statue in Fort Worth, TX

Updated: Nov 7, 2023

Nestled in the bustling metropolis of Fort Worth, TX, lies a symbol of military service, heroism, and patriotism. Standing atop his granite pedestal, the life-size bronze statue of Major Ripley Arnold casts a resplendent presence in the cultural landscape, honoring the valiant actions of an American war veteran and the immense dedication of our armed forces. The statue of Major Ripley Arnold was commissioned in 1925 by the citizens of Fort Worth and was designed by sculptor Pompeo Coppini. Generously funded by the citizens of Fort Worth, the project serves as a monument to Major Arnold’s service to his country, as well as an enduring tribute to the millions of veterans and active service members of the United States Armed Forces. Find further facts here.

Standing at an impressive 8’7” tall, the statue is larger than life, lending an unmistakable air of grandeur and splendor to the area. The body of Major Arnold is depicted wearing a full Army uniform, including the highly-decorated coat formerly worn by Major General Ulysses S. Grant. The uniform further accentuates Arnold’s commitment to military valor and illustrates the unified strength of the United States military. Major Ripley Arnold (1819 -1887) was a brave and valued man of his time; a masterful infantry officer and brave military tactician, he led several troops of diverse backgrounds and creeds into battle and earned the respect of his men by exhibiting maximum care and diligence, even in the most perilous of situations. He served with distinction in the American Civil War and continued to serve the American people and its armed forces until the day of his death. Learn more about The World-Renowned Leonard’s Museum: An Inside Look at the Museums and Artworks of Fort Worth, TX.

The massive granite pedestal upon which the statue proudly stands is a work of art in and of itself. During the dedication ceremony, in which Major Arnold’s surviving children played a prominent role, a military band provided the entertainment, leading to the stirring rendition of “The Star-Spangled Banner,” which exists as a living tribute to Major Arnold’s lifelong commitment to American ideals of liberty and justice. Since the dedication of the Major Ripley Arnold statue in 1925, the city of Fort Worth, TX, has embraced this symbol of patriotism and courage, transforming it from a simple bronze bust into a visual representation of courage and commitment. Every year, the statue serves as a backdrop for the annual Armed Forces Day celebration, an event that honors active service members, veterans, and their families with parades and other forms of recognition. At the foot of the monument stands a marble plaque that lists the names of the twenty-two veterans of the Civil War who are buried in a nearby Veterans’ Cemetery.

With its stunning metallic sheen, this noble statue stands as a reminder of the importance of military defense and the unconditional love and respect that the American people bear for its veterans and active service members. With this monument, the citizens of Fort Worth, TX, honor the incredible courage, patriotism, and loyalty exhibited by Major Ripley Arnold and remind others of the strength of our armed forces in the present and in the future.


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