Department Chair

Andrew D. Nicholls, Ph.D. Professor and Chair

Date of Award


Access Control

Open Access

Degree Name

Museum Studies, M.A.


History and Social Studies Education Department


Cynthia A. Conides, Ph.D.

Department Home page

First Reader

Cynthia A. Conides, Ph.D.

Second Reader

Noelle J. Wiedemer


The goal of this paper is to investigate the motivations of the patrons behind four of Buffalo, New York’s early monuments. These are the Soldiers and Sailors Monument (1882), the Lincoln, The Emancipator Monument (1902), the Red Jacket Monument (1890), and the McKinley Monument (1907). Each section contains historical context regarding the time period, critical events that influenced the monument, comparisons to similar monuments in the United States, and the narratives of the monument’s dedication and ceremonies. When grouped together, the historical context provided for each monument essentially plays into the motivations behind why each monument was erected. Lastly, the physical features described in each section demonstrates the ideas examined through the historical context of each section. In the past, Buffalo’s monuments have been individually studied. However, through this paper, the four monuments will be collectively studied and made relatable through what their patrons meant for them to symbolize. In doing so, this paper not only determines the motivations behind each monument, it also provides an insight to which groups of citizens controlled the commemoration of past events and historical figures in Buffalo between 1882 and 1907.