Christopher Columbus Memorial
At the corner of the Parkway and Mohawk Street is the Christopher Columbus monument (Dedicated April 25th 1952), the work of the sculptor Enrico Arrighini. Here again, the present location is not the original one. Until 1966 Columbus stood on a traffic island at the intersection of Oriskany and John streets. Identified on some older maps as Columbus Square, this had been the site of a weighing station and turning basin on the Erie Canal. The development of the East-West Arterial forced the monuments removal and it was rededicated on Columbus Day, October 12th, 1966.
The bronze figure of the Genoese Explorer (1451 - 1506) stands on a tall stone pedestal with a bas relief on its front depicting a sailing vessel with a figure at its bow and kneeling crew members. This is surely Columbus and the crew of the Santa Maria, and not the Mayflower as some local sources assert!
On the front of the pedestal is the inscription: "Erected by the citizens of Utica under the auspices of the Federation Italian-Americans Societies of Utica new York. April 25, 1852". On the rear of the pedestal are the words: "The great Italian Navigator/Challenged the Dominant/ Obscurantism of his time/Conquered the unknown/Gave humanity a new world/ Was rewarded with chains And humiliation/Died In Misery"