This striking monument commemorates the American-French victory over the British in the Siege of Yorktown (1781), which effectively ended the Revolutionary War. The Yorktown Monument to the Alliance and Victory was designed by architects R.M. Hunt and Henry Van Brunt and sculpted by J.Q.A. Ward in 1881, and completed in 1884. Lightning damaged the statue of liberty atop the column and Oskar J.W. Hansen sculpted a replacement in 1957.
The monument is adorned with symbolism, including four high relief sculptures depicting military aspects of the American-French alliance. Thirteen neoclassical female figures represent the thirteen original colonies forming the United States of America. Beneath them is written, “One country, one constitution, one destiny.” Thirty-eight stars on the column represent the 38 states at the time the monument was erected. And of course, Lady Liberty stands at the top.