Stephen Douglas Statue

Former Governor Joel Matteson commissioned sculptor Leonard Volk to make this marble statue of Stephen A. Douglas, Abraham Lincoln's long-time political rival. It was rescued from a fire at Matteson's home in 1873 and now stands outside Representatives Hall.

Douglas made one of his most famous speeches here to a joint session of the legislature on April 25, 1861, shortly after the Civil War began and a few months before he died. Although Douglas had opposed Lincoln for the presidency, on this evening he urged his audience to put aside partisan differences to save the Union.

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