Old Abe, the bald eagle mascot who went into battle with the 8th Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry Regiment during the Civil War, sits atop the arch. Statues of a veteran soldier and a young recruit flank the opening. Jeff Miller
Union troops trained at Camp Randall, the site of what was once a state fairground. Although citizens initially admired their drills, the soldiers soon wore out their welcome with rowdy behavior — a result of frequenting Madison taverns while awaiting action. WHS 1838.
The first athletic field was built on the site in 1894. Civil War veterans convinced the state legislature in 1911 to establish a five-acre memorial park and allocate $25,000 to design and build the monument. The arch was built in 1912. Jeff Miller.
Published in the Fall 2016 issue