The statue was inaugurated in September 1896, two short years after President Carnot’s death. It was the result of the combined work of the sculptor Louis Ernest Barrias, the architect Jean-Louis Pascal and the Barbedienne foundry. The project was funded by public donations and by grants allocated by the city council and the State ministry for “Instruction Publique et des Beaux-Arts”. In all, the bill came to some 42,567 francs.
|Place Richelieu as it was then, and Place Jean-Jaurès as it is now.|
|The statue as it looked in 1914 and the view from the same vantage point 100 years later. Where have all the shutters gone?|
The message was considered significant enough to feature on the statue itself, engraved on the tablet on which rested the left hand of the female figure, who symbolised history. Her right arm held aloft a golden palm leaf, reaching up towards Carnot. Also at the foot of the monument was a child holding a bunch of everlastings (immortelles in French, i.e. Helichrysum).
|Close-up views of the figures at the base of the monument.|