Workers construct a section of the thirteen steps that would eventually lead to the Four Freedoms monument on Evansville’s riverfront, across the street from the McCurdy Hotel, Hadi Shrine Mosque, and the Jackson House Hotel.
The monument was built in 1976 to commemorate the United States Bicentennial. The steps represented the original thirteen colonies founded in the nation’s early history; at the top of the steps, fifty limestone pedestals — one for each state — would encircle the four pillars, which embodied the freedoms of speech and religion, as well as the freedoms from fear and oppression.
The mammoth columns now in place soar to an impressive height of twenty-four feet and were originally part of the entrance to the Community Center at Eighth and Main streets. When the building was razed in 1966 to make way for the Civic center, the four columns were spared by the wrecking ball and preserved until a permanent location was found.