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Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Augustus Lukeman

Henry Augustus Lukeman (January 28, 1872 – April 3, 1935) was an American sculptor, specializing in historical monuments. He was born in Richmond, Virginia, and introduced to sculpting at age 10 at a boys' club miniature workshop. From 10 to 13 he worked with clay and wood. He then became a pupil of sculptor Launt Thompson until age 16, followed by an apprenticeship at the foundry of Jno. Williams, Inc. until he was 19. Then for several years he studied terra cotta and architectural modeling for building and exterior decorations while in the evening studying life drawing and the antiques at the Cooper Union and the National Academy of Design in New York. His work was recognized by the Henry Street Settlement and he earned an honorary L.H.D. from Dickinson College.

When the construction began of the World's Columbian Exposition, 1893, he superintended the enlarging of some of the most important works, including Daniel Chester French's Statue of the Republic. Following that he went to Europe and worked under Jean-Alexandre-Joseph Falguiere in the Beaux Arts, in Paris. When he returned to New York he became a pupil of friend and mentor Daniel Chester French before starting his own studio in New York.
Stone Mountain
His independent work began with portrait busts and statues, the National Sculpture Society Seal, bas-reliefs, ornamental sculptures and many monuments. Lukeman's most noted work was Stone Mountain in Atlanta, Georgia. He designed and worked on the sculptures of Stone Mountain, after removing Gutzon Borglum's work (who had originally been given the commission but resigned). When funding ran out in the advent of the Great Depression, he continued to pay the craftsmen until his own means fell short. The carving remained incomplete for decades until sculptor Walker Hancock and chief carver Roy Faulkner, using Lukeman’s models, completed the edited version (no legs on horses) in 1970 measuring 300 feet in length and 190 feet in height.

Lukeman died in New York on April 3, 1935, at age 65 leaving his wife, formerly, Helen Bidwell Blodgett.

Public sculptures

  • Four figures, Hebrew Law Giver, Hebrew Psalmist, Hebrew Apostle and Hebrew Prophet for the facade of the Brooklyn Museum, 1907-1909
  • The World War I monument, the "Prospect Park Memorial", in Prospect Park, Brooklyn
  • Stone Mountain, DeKalb County, Georgia, 1925-1928
Lukeman was preceded in this project by Gutzon Borglum and followed by Walker Hancock.
  • Two sculptures in Statuary Hall, US Capitol, Washington, D.C., Jefferson Davis ) and Senator James Z. George, both 1928
  • Gold Pulitzer Award (Lukeman with Daniel Chester French)
  • The Straus Memorial in Straus Park, Manhattan, New York City, 1915
Dedicated to Ida and Isidor Straus, who lost their lives on the RMS Titanic.
  • Manu, the Law Giver of India, on the Appellate Division Courthouse of New York State, New York City, 1899
  • President William McKinley Statue, Adams, MA
  • President William McKinley Statue, Toledo, Ohio
  • President Franklin Pierce, New Hampshire State Capitol
  • Francis Asbury Equestrian Sculpture, Washington, DC
  • Francis Asbury Statue, Madison, New Jersey
  • Robert Livingston, St Louis, Michigan
  • Professor Joseph Henry, Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey
Kit Carson
  • Kit Carson Monument in Trinidad, Colorado (Lukeman created the figure of Carson while sculptor Frederick Roth executed the horse)
  • 4 colossal statues for the Royal Bank of Canada headquarters in Montreal
  • Soldiers’ Monument, Somerville, Massachusetts
  • The Soldiers and Sailors Monument, Pittsfield, Massachusetts, 1923, (refurbished, Memorial Day 2010)
  • Equestrian statue of Major General David McM. Gregg, Reading, Pennsylvania
  • Elisha Yale at Gloversville, New York
  • Former President James K. Patterson of the University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky
  • Memorial to the Women of the Confederacy, Raleigh, North Carolina
  • Columbus, New York Custom House
  • Bas-relief portrait of Daniel Boone, Paris, Kentucky
  • US Grant Memorial, San Diego, California
  • Saint Louis Exposition medal
  • Lieutenant Cushing on the Dewey Arch, New York, New York
  • Gen William Shepard, Westfield, Massachusetts
  • Sculpture at the Pan American Exposition in Buffalo, New York
  • Sculptures at the Saint Louis Exposition in 1904 (awarded a medal)
  • Soldiers and Sailors Monument, Public Square, Watertown, New York


  • Obituary: New York Times, Thursday April 4, 1935
  • The Times-Dispatch, Richmond, Virginia, May 10, 1903
  • Portfolios and papers given to the Smithsonian, American Archives, Washington, DC
External Links 
Stone Mountain

Source: Internet