According to the site Central Park: Where Are The Women?, Central Park features 22 statues honoring men and none honoring real women. Statues of women in the park are largely relegated to literary characters, angels, and other mythical figures.
The Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony Fund is seeking to change that, and they’ve just taken the first step in the process — receiving preliminary approval from the New York City Parks Commissioner. If the funds needed to create it are raised, the statue commemorating the two women’s rights pioneers and their cause will be the first of its kind in the park.
The Fund aims to dedicate a statue of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony, significant abolitionists, feminist activists and the founders of The National Woman Suffrage Association. The statue would be erected at West 77th Street and Central Park West, an area marked by its historical statues of great men, including Abraham Lincoln, Frederick Douglass and Theodore Roosevelt.
But before the statue can join the ranks of these notable historical figures, a significant amount of money needs to be raised. New York City Parks Commissioner Mitchell Silver explained in a letter that the statue will cost somewhere in the range of $500,000 to $1 million.
Silver recommended that the Statue Fund hire a project manager and gather a panel to select an artist to create the statue. The Department also recommended hiring a public art consultant, an engineer, a development associate and a publicist. Not only will the cost of development and the construction need to be covered by the fund, but the commission also requires the money to maintain the structure moving forward.
The Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony Statue Fund is not deterred by the sum or the long process attached to the statue’s construction. They explained that Silver’s letter allows the Fund to begin accepting donations to support the creation, organization and promotion of the statue.
Donations are now being accepted at the fund’s official website. The Statue Fund has been granted tax-exempt status under section 501 (c)(3).