Monument to the Soldiers and Sailors. – At the town meeting held on Monday, April 2, 1866, John A. Hawes, Dr. George Atwood, James V. Cox, Job C. Tripp and George F. Tripp were appointed a committee to consider the subject of a soldiers’ monument and report at the next annual meeting. The report was made and the monument erected the following year, the committee having charge of erecting the soldiers’ monument at Riverside Cemetery being composed of Capt. John A. Hawes, Dr. George Atwood and Job C. Tripp, the first named being an ardent member of the Whig Party.
An 1868 newspaper item recorded the following: – “NOTICE. The citizens of Fairhaven are requested to meet at the Bridge Corner this afternoon (May 30, 1868) about 2 o’clock, and ‘fall in’ in the rear of Post No. 1 of New Bedford as it passes toward the cemetery. Those who were in the service of the United States at any time during the war are requested to ‘fall in’ on the right of the citizens.”
The New Bedford delegation arrived at the designated point. As it reached the residence of Capt. Hawes, a halt was made and a generous and beautiful contribution of flowers was placed in the flower carriage.
Arriving at Riverside, the members of the Post with their guests and a large concourse of citizens of Fairhaven gathered about the soldiers’ and sailors’ monument, then recently erected by the town authorities. A platform stood near, upon which were seated the selectmen, Rev. Dr. Quint, Capt. Hawes and others. Capt. Hawes, as chairman of the committee having in charge the erection of the monument, spoke and remarked that soon after the arrival of the remains of the first Fairhaven soldier to fall in the war, Mr. Edwin R. Almy, at a meeting of the trustees of the cemetery, moved that a suitable lot be appropriated for the burial of those who fell in defense of their Country. This was done. George F. Meacham, the architect, voluntarily exceeded his contract by adding three feet to the height of the shaft.
Capt. Hawes, pointing to the Monument and addressing his remarks to the chairman of the selectmen, said, “There is our report.” To dedicate informally the monument they called upon Dr. Quint who closed the exercises with a dedicatory prayer.
Source: “Old Time Fairhaven” (I) by Charles A. Harris, Reynolds Printing, New Bedford, Page 245