As Tragedies Mount, Memorial at JP’s Monument Grows

Originally created to memorialize fallen soldiers from the town of West Roxbury (now Jamaica Plain) who lost their lives during the Civil War, the Soldier’s Monument on Centre Street in JP is now a growing memorial for this summer’s seemingly never-ending string of tragedies.

In recent years, the monument has been a meeting place for those involved in war protests and peace vigils. Then, in June, community members held a vigil at the Monument for the victims of the Orlando nightclub shooting.

Since then, the fencing around the Monument has also been decorated with flags, signs and crosses memorializing victims from this month’s shootings in St. Paul, Minn., Dallas, Texas, and Baton Rouge, La., as well as international tragedies including last fall’s massacre in Paris and this week’s truck attack in Nice, France.

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  • N Marks

    I would like to say that while I appreciate the memorial, it feels like it has become more of a Christian space than a spiritual/memorial space. I am hesitant to even write this because I know people will jump on me as either anti-religious or anti-christian (I am neither). My point is that Jews, Muslims, atheists, pagans and others are probably among those who died. The presence of so many crosses makes it hard to have that come across.

    • Hugo_JP

      You make a good point. Also, I’m curious as to the “ownership” of the monument. At what point do all the new “memorials” overwhelm the purpose of the original monument?

  • MMRosenthal

    The crosses on the fence look like those left, hammered into the dirt, on abandoned battlefields. Markers of lives lost, more than declarations of faith. Instead of worrying about which religion is being represented, or how the memorial is being “used;” I think we need to focus on why the crosses are there in the first place.