All projects are important – from the iconic super stars to the mundane quality of life improvements, we approach all of our work with the same dedication and reverence for the science and craft of engineering. But every once in a while a project comes along that we just can’t wait to get to work on; those special opportunities that give even the most seasoned and experienced engineer a case of the goosebumps when they are awarded…and still do when we drive past them. Join us this week as we talk about these projects that make us feel all warm and fuzzy inside.
We are kicking off the week at the top. We asked F&R’s CEO Sam Proctor which projects F&R has undertaken that fill him with a sense of accomplishment and respect for this time in history. Sam isn’t an engineer but the work of his team of professionals and his family before him are a singular source of pride.
Abraham and Tad Lincoln Sculpture at the Richmond National Battlefield Park Civil War Visitor Center, by New York artist David Frech, commemorates the visit to the Confederate capital by Lincoln, accompanied by his son, on April 4, 1865, shortly before Lincoln’s assassination and mere days after Richmond’s capture by Union troops. That day Lincoln, leading 12 year old Tad by the hand and accompanied by a bodyguard of sailors, walked the streets while newly freed blacks cheered.
Sponsored by the US Historical Society, the $250K statue’s future was uncertain as its funding came under fire by opposing groups unhappy about its significance and proposed location at the Richmond National Battlefield Park Civil War Center who claimed that it violated state law. With the funding mired in controversy, many local businesses and individuals stepped up to assist. F&R provided gratis geotechnical services in support of the construction of the bronze statue which sits atop a granite pad surrounded by a wall paid for by a Richmond City Council donation of $45,000. The wall is inscribed with a conciliatory fragment of Lincoln’s second inaugural address: “to bind up the nation’s wounds.”
Our firm has been a proud part of the Richmond Community since the turn of the 20th Century; we know and respect our history and are guided by its lessons. On April 5, 2003, Lincoln’s message of unity resounded clearly after 138 years and continues to do so today.