African American History
The African American Monument is located on the south side of Grant Avenue between milepost 4.3 and 4.4. Erected by the State of Mississippi at a cost of $300,000, including $25,000 contributed by the City of Vicksburg, the sculpture is the work of Dr. Kim Sessums, from Brookhaven, Mississippi. The monument consists of three bronze figures on a base of black African granite — two black Union soldiers, and a common field hand. The field hand and one soldier support between them the second soldier, who is wounded and represents the sacrifice in blood made by black soldiers on the field of battle during the Civil War. The field hand looks behind at a past of slavery, while the first soldier gazes toward a future of freedom secured by force of arms on the field of battle.
Did You Know?
Vicksburg National Military Park is one of the most heavily monumented parks in the world with over 1330 monuments, markers, tablets, and plaques. The beauty and artistry of its monumentation prompted one Civil War veteran to call Vicksburg National Military Park, "the art park of the world."