- Frederick William MacMonnies (American, New York 1863–1937 New York)
- 1890, cast by 1904
- 28 x 7 3/4 x 6 in. (71.1 x 19.7 x 15.2 cm)
- Credit Line:
- Bequest of Mary Stillman Harkness, 1950
- Accession Number:
In 1890 MacMonnies won a competition for a statue of Nathan Hale (1755–1776), the Revolutionary War hero who was captured infiltrating British lines and hanged as a spy. The bronze was erected in Manhattan’s City Hall Park in 1893. MacMonnies had no images of Hale to consult, so he portrayed him as a quintessential American patriot. Hale appears moments before his execution on September 22, 1776, having just uttered his famous words, “I only regret that I have but one life to give for my country.” He is clothed as a schoolmaster, which was his actual profession; his bound arms and feet are somber reminders of his impending fate.