Henry Maxwell Memorial Tablet
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Henry Maxwell Monument

 

Henry Maxwell is a Brooklyn-based philanthropist, banker and supporter of public education. Maxwell

is known for making a lot of money as a partner in the Maxwell and Graves Bank, but he is better known for giving it away to local charities. Maxwell played a significant role in building the Memorial Industrial School No.2, which he dedicated to his wife and mother.


When he passed away, his friends and relatives commissioned artist Saint-Gaudens to make a

bronze relief portrait of Henry Maxwell. Albert Jaegers assisted Saint-Gaudens in creating the relief

and affixing it to a 20 ton pink granite boulder. The monument was unveiled on December 26, 1903

by Howard Whitney, Maxwell’s niece.


The memorial’s original location was the intersection of Flatbush Avenue and Eastern Parkway,

beside Mr. Prospect Reservoir. That piece of property was the former Sunset Park, and is now

where the Brooklyn Central Library stands. When the library was constructed in 1912, Maxwell’s monument was loved to its present site at Plaza Street East and St. John’s Place.


However, the relief on the boulder is only a replica. The original is displayed at the south entrance

of the Brooklyn Museum of Art. Another replica may be found in Cornish, New Hampshire at the

Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site.