Joanie On The Pony from Bob Lindberg

Joey: it’s Mike Lindberg’s brother BOB (the dentist)writing. Recently we had family from Tampa in town and showing them around Gloucester and I wanted to show them the
very nice Joan D’Arc statue . When asked “why does Gloucester have this statue ?” I thought, you know I do not know but I will find out ; I did know the artist was from the area. Much to my surprise I learned many very interesting facts besides that the sculptress Anna Hyatt Huntington came from causeway studio at “hole in the wall” at Goose Cove where we passed a million times as kids heading out to the Annisquam and the Bay.

I do know some refer to her as Joanie on the Pony affectionately and somewhat naively irreverently ( goodmorninggloucester) and always wondered why French statue and not Swedish,Portugese or Italian.

Among the surprising facts I have found thanks to internet:
1) horse was modelled from the biggest Gloucester firehorse at the time in pre WWI days
2) her studio was the house at the hole in the wall as we called it;family owned the house aka first marine biology field station there ;she designed plaque on the rock
3) figure model of Joan was her niece
4) in the art contest many liked her worked but she didn’t win because it was thought a man must have helped her -it was so good
5) Joan is holding up sword before battle asking for God to help her in leading the men in the quest to rid France of the English;later burned at the stake at 19,later sainted
   and wore men’s clothing because as she said “no voice told her to not wear men’s clothing”
6) There are several copies of statue one other in NY and 3 in France -Gloucester’s is #2
7) It was given to Gloucester after WWI as a special thank you to all US forces who helped France kick Germany out of  France
  particularly men from Gloucester in the Battle of Belleau Woods 1918 where the marines fought so bravely they earned the nickname said to have been given to them by
the Germans ” teufelshunden-hound devils or hellhounds ” for their tenacity and where a famous marine corps officer ‘s response to request from the French fighting alongside to retreat under the heavy fire from the Germans was  “Retreat?We just got here!”
8) at that Battle which was greatest battle since Appomattox where US soldiers fought includes men from Gloucester- local Gloucester man Lester Waas seehttp://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/index.php?/topic/30873-show-tell-wwi-5th-marine-co-cdrs-kia-group-dsc-navy-cross/who was last surviving officer none the less led a fatal charge of marines to capture a German machine gun and won several medals for bravery see following and the first Medal of Honor for WWI was given to a marine for bravery  surprisingly for helping wounded while under fire a dentist Alexander Gordon Lyle from Gloucester won the medal of honor for bravery http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexander_Gordon_Lyle  also veteran A Piatt Andrew who name is on 128 bridge .

So after learning this I will look at Joanie on the Pony with well earned affection and appreciation and gratitude . Regards Bob Lindberg

Check out the page from distinguished women from the past-

Joan of Arc

(1412-1431)

8 comments

  • Kathleen Henneberry

    Thank you very much for this. I will tell this story when I bring friends and family to Gloucester, and we ride by “Joanie”! Kathleen

  • What a great post, thank you

  • GIrl Scout Troop #137 helped the city of Gloucester obtain the money to restore the statue starting in 1999. They researched Anna Hyatt Huntington and her work and they researched the men and one woman memorialized on the base of the staute.
    If you are interested, they made an album about the men and woman and gave a copy to the Gloucester Achives and the Sawyer Free Library.
    By the way, not only did the troop recieve a first place national award from the Smithsonian Institute and Save our Sculpture for their work, but the also recieved the 2003 Massachusetts Historical Commision’s Preservation Award, the only youth group ever to do so! (Of course none of this was ever publicized in the GDTimes!)
    Gloria Parsons

  • I didn’t know she had designed the plaque on tho rock at Alpheus Hyatt’s house. It’s down a private drive and now hard to get to. I have a photo of it somewhere and will post it unless someone tells me I already did.

  • The Statue onNYC s inRiverside Park at about 102 street–It always cheered me up to see it and reminded of “Home” …Gloucester of course

  • Thanks for doing the research on this statue! I had heard snippets of its history but didn’t know the whole story. Anna Hyatt Huntington was a remarkable sculptor. If you are in NYC, you can see some of her work a the Hispanic Society of America, a museum founded by her husband, Archer Milton Huntington. It is located at 155th Street and Broadway. Admission is free, and besides Anna’s sculptures in the courtyard, it has an impressive collection of art from Spain, Portugal, and Latin America. Among the things not to miss: the murals by JoaquĂ­n Sorolla y Bastida depicting the different regions of Spain.

  • And of course, we all know what Joan of Arc said as she was burned at the stake:
    “I’m smoking more now, but enjoying it less..”

    Sorry.

  • I love the statue, weather someone finds a bra big enough to strap on her or breaks the plastic sword off but still think that she aught to be turned around so a horse’s ass does not greet visitors to this beautiful city. It might give people the wrong idea about us. Incidently do you know what Paul Revere said to his horse after his famous ride? “Whoa.”

Leaving a comment rewards the author of this post- add to the discussion here-

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s