The Confederate Memorial is the largest and oldest monument on the grounds of the Alabama State Capitol in Montgomery. Designed by Alexander Doyle of New York, the monument took 12 years to complete and cost $46,000 to build. Jefferson Davis, the former President of the Confederacy, laid the cornerstone on the monument in 1887. The Monument includes a limestone base, four granite figures, a limestone shaft featuring a large bronze relief band near the base, and a bronze figure on the top. The four figures represent the four primary branches of the Confederate armed forces, Cavalry, Infantry, Artillery, and the Navy. The bronze base relief is symbolic of any southern battlefield, and the bronze figure atop the 70-foot tall shaft is symbolic of southern womanhood and patriotism.
In 2001, Carraway and Associates was commissioned by the Alabama Historical Commission to select and coordinate a team of conservation professionals to determine the condition of the bronze, limestone, granite, and general metals that comprise the monument and to write specifications for cleaning, repair, and maintenance of these materials. As indicted in the photos, the stone immediately beneath the sculptural bronze frieze and statue had stains from the bronze alloys. Both the bronze and stone components had irregular surface coloration that resembled dirt and indicated the presence of moisture trapped behind various coatings. Some of the stones at the base of the monument were separating along the bedding planes and many of the stonework joints were open. Cracks in the monument in several locations suggested structural problems that were addressed by our firm and the team as well.