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Calvin Coolidge’s Speech at the Unveiling and Dedication of the Lafayette Statue in Baltimore

unveiling of Lafayette statue
On September 6th, 1928, President Calvin Coolidge addressed the crowd at the unveiling of the Lafayette Statue in Baltimore, MD. Learn more about his speech and the event at the Ghosts of Baltimore blog!
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Here’s a great photo that we dug up showing Calvin Coolidge attending the unveiling and dedication of the Lafayette Statue in Mount Vernon Place.

This took place on September 6th, 1928, the 171st anniversary of Marquis de Lafayette’s birth.

unveiling of Lafayette statue
unveiling of Lafayette statue
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Source: Library of Congress

Below is an article that we found in The Baltimore Sun, printed on September 7th.

President Coolidge’s address at the unveiling of the Lafayette Monument paid a graceful tribute to the great Frenchman. It was the second speech on Lafayette the President has delivered and he has made himself thoroughly familiar with his subject. Viewing Lafayette’s career as demonstrating his devotion to ordered liberty, to moderation and to self-government, the President took the opportunity to emphasize the needs of those virtues at the present time. This led him to a discussion of issues that enter into the present Presidential campaign. In doing so he boldly challenged those who would destroy the authority of the United States Supreme Court.

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The President touched so directly on political issues which are now in the public mind that surprise may be expressed that he did not go farther and see his way clear to take a bold stand on one other matter that engages public attention. It is the introduction into our politics of religious bigotry and race hatred. Surely on such an occasion, dealing with a man who loved all mankind, who was the apotheosis of toleration, the President might have found it fitting to say a word that would have placed him in courageous opposition to a movement that conveys a threat to the fundamentals of free government.

Here’s another great photo from that day.

Calvin Coolige at podium
Calvin Coolige at podium

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