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[s31] Sen. Merritt Honors Civil War Hero
Start Date: 6/10/2013Start Time: 12:00 AM
End Date: 6/10/2013
Entry Description
STATEHOUSE (June 10, 2013) – State Sen. Jim Merritt (R-Indianapolis) honored a key figure in Indiana’s Civil War history today with the re-commemoration of a bronze bust honoring Union Colonel Richard Owen. This month marks the 100th anniversary of the bust’s original dedication.

During the Civil War, Owen was a Commandant of a prisoners of war camp in Indianapolis. He was widely regarded for his kindness and strength of character.

Colonel Owen was so highly respected by the Confederate prisoners that 50 years after the war’s end, they set up a fund to memorialize him with a bronze bust. The bust, which now resides in the Indiana Statehouse, was dedicated in June of 1913 by 500 Union and Confederate veterans in what United Confederate Veterans General Bennett H. Young called “the greatest lesson in humanity and peace the nation had ever seen.”

“It’s important not only that we honor Indiana’s role in the Civil War and the historical significance of our state’s contributions, but also the quality of this man and the indelible impression he left upon his countrymen,” Merritt said. “His is an example we can all aspire to.”

Merritt has been a champion of preserving Indiana history in the past, co-authoring a bill during the 2013 session of the Indiana General Assembly which provides funds for maintaining and restoring Indiana’s historic battle flags.

“I was pleased to have the opportunity to commemorate the service and spirit of Colonel Owen today,” Merritt said. “His generosity and mercy are shining examples of Hoosier character and ought to be remembered.”

Re-enactors representing Civil War soldiers as well as third- and fourth-generation family members of Colonel Owen attended the event, which culminated with Civil War-era music courtesy of Nick Sacco and words of tribute from the original dedication.

Members of the public are encouraged to visit the bust on the 2nd floor of the Indiana Statehouse.
Contact Information:
Name: Molly Johnson
Phone: 317-234-9133
Email: mjohnson@iga.in.gov
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Entry Type:
Press Release
Entry Category:
  • Announcements
  • IN.gov Category:
  • About Indiana
  • Agency Name
    Senate Republican Caucus

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