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Statue / monument of Gilbert de Lafayette in Washington DC by Sculptor  Jean Falguiere and Marius Mercie  Subject: Gilbert de Lafayette
 Year: 1891
 Sculptor:  Jean Falguiere and Marius Mercie
 Location: Lafayette Park
( Pennsylvania Ave. & 16th )

The Marquis de Lafayette (1757-1834) was a nineteen-year-old French nobleman who sailed his own ship, La Victoire, in defiance of the French King, to America to assist the colonists. He brought with him a number of French soldiers to fight beside the colonists in the Revolutionary War. (Among them was Pierre L'Enfant, designer of the Federal City and aide to General Washington.)

Lafayette served as an aide to Washington at Valley Forge and contributed greatly to the defeat of the British under Cornwallis at Yorktown, Virginia. He spent $200,000 of his own money supporting the American Revolution. After the war, Congress granted him that amount of money, along with a township of land.

Lafayette was always a welcome visitor in the new nation's capital. He was the first foreigner to address a joint session of Congress (1824) and his portrait hangs in the chamber of the House of Representatives.

Photos and text copyright © 2001 Jean K. Rosales and Michael R. Jobe, All Rights Reserved

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