WELCOME to the “Hermon A. MacNeil” — Virtual Gallery & Museum !

~ This Gallery celebrates Hermon Atkins MacNeil,  of the Beaux Arts School American classic sculptor of Native images and American history.  ~ World’s Fairs, statues, monuments, coins, and more… ~ Hot-links ( lower right) lead to works by Hermon A. MacNeil.   ~ Over 300 of stories & 4,000 photos form this virtual MacNeil Gallery stretching east to west  New York to New Mexico ~ Oregon to S. Carolina.   ~ 2016 marked the 150th Anniversary of Hermon MacNeil’s birth. ~~Do you WALK or DRIVE by MacNeil sculptures DAILY!  ~ CHECK OUT Uncle Hermon’s works!     Daniel Neil Leininger, webmaster

DO YOU walk by MacNeil Statues and NOT KNOW IT ???

  READ  our  review  HERE   of:

Jim Haas’ BOOK~ Hermon Atkins MacNeil: American Sculptor  In the Broad, Bright Daylight    

   CLICK HERE to purchase (Amazon Books):

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 CLICK HERE to purchase a

MacNeil Medallion of the

Standing Liberty Quarter  on eBay  photos  at right →  →

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After the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair, MacNeil had a studio in the Marquette Building.  Black Pipe modeled and helped him there.  Hermon said that BLACK PIPE …

…  stayed with me in all for a year and a half, helping me with odd jobs about the studio.

MacNeil Comments on

Black Pipe: 29 years after …

in an interview with J. W. McSpadden in 1922

MACNEIL: “Yes, and you may find it an interesting yarn. Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show had been in Chicago during the Fair, and one of his braves was Black Pipe, a Sioux, a fine-looking fellow. He had stayed behind, and one day I met him on the streets, looking hungry and cold, and asked him if he wanted something to do. He did there was no doubt about that. I took him into the studio, fed him up, and then set to work modeling his head. I finished it in four hours, for I was not sure that I would ever see my Indian again; but he stayed with me in all for a year and a half, helping me with odd jobs about the studio. That’s his head there.”

It was a life-size bronze, which he indicated, not done in full relief but resting on a plaque a strong piece of portraiture.

Black Pipe later became the model for “Primitive Indian Music,” also known as “The Primitive Chant” and “The Primitive Chant to the Great Spirit.”

As posted last Month on October 8, 2023, Black Pipe was a model for multiple statues and reliefs. 

Because Black Pipe was among “white folks” long enough to not be superstitious about being photographed and modeled in clay, he became a studio helper, model, and regular for over a year.

‘The Primitive Chant” … is one of my best-known Indian subjects.” MacNeil

Black Pipe became the model for “Primitive Indian Music,” also known as “The Primitive Chant,” and the “The Primitive Chant to the Great Spirit.”

This is the spirited figure of a naked savage dancing to the music of his own flute. It has been widely copied in art prints.

Source: Joseph Walker McSpadden, Famous Sculptors of America, (New York: Dodd, Mead and Company, 1924) pp. 311-12

In reviewing “The Primitive Chant to the Great Spirit,” Lorado Taft praised MacNeil’ sculptural work and composition YET CRITICIZED how a warrior chanting into his elbow could be called “MUSIC ?”  MACNEIL, by contract knew that Native American dances, such as  “The Prayer for Rain” of the Hopi’s or the “Moque Runner” were acts of devotion to the Creator Spirit.

MacNeil’s exposure to the life of Native Tribes appreciated their AWE, WONDER, and WORSHIP embedded in such Ritual Actions.

See Taft’s critique from this April 25, 2012 posting:

Part 1: “The Primitive Chant to the Great Spirit” Hermon A. MacNeil~Sculptor of the American West

Related posts:

  1. BLACK PIPE ~~ MacNeil’s 1894 Roundel ~~ Only 2 Exist (18.6) This website has found the ONLY TWO BLACK PIPE Roundels…
  2. 123 Year old Bas Relief of “Black Pipe The Sioux at Six Teen Years” has been reported to www.HermonAtkinsMacNeil.com (16.6) 2017 BLACK PIPE in 14 stories    A never before seen or…
  3. MORE on BLACK PIPE #2 ~ How The SIOUX Brave returned to South Dakota. (14.5) I RECEIVED AN EMAIL on September 24, 2023 FROM: Kevin…
  4. BLACK PIPE, the SIOUX, Returns to South Dakota on “Native American Day” ~ ~ (12.3) 2023 After 130 years, Black Pipe, the Sioux, has returned…
  5. 2016 ~ A Double Anniversary Year for Hermon Atkins MacNeil (8.9) 1886-2016 150th Anniversary of the Birth of Hermon A. MacNeil…
  6. Hermon MacNeil Supported Black Sculptor: Augusta Savage: ~ 1923 ~~ Part #1 (8.6) MacNeil wrote a letter in 1923 advocating for Miss Augusta…

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I RECEIVED AN EMAIL on September 24, 2023 FROM:

Kevin James Kirby in California

Dear Mr. Leininger, 

Greetings from California. I would like to thank you for your excellent website on the artist Hermon A. MacNeil. I found the information therein both interesting and helpful.


That said, the real reason why I am writing is to alert you to the fact that I am about to sell a

very rare 1894 bronze sculpture of

Black Pipe.

It is only the second presently known to be in existence
(the other being well documented

on your website).

To this, I replied the next morning that I was VERY interested in purchasing this rare MacNeil piece.

Later I received a response from Kevin:

Good morning Mr. Leininger,

Thank you for your reply. And how fortuitous that Black Pipe is so present in your thoughts!

My wife (PhD in art history ) and I (Bachelor of Science in sculpture) are both keen enthusiasts of art and history.

We have read almost all the associated literature, and have discussed this piece with various academics and institutions.

Indeed, Black Pipe’s is an incredible origin story — as is MacNeil’s.



As part of our private research, I have also been in direct contact with the

Lakota Sioux Nation at Standing Rock.

I was lucky enough to visit the Reservation in 2020,

and inquire directly about Black Pipe.

There I met an elder who remembered hearing about Black Pipe, who apparently was a member of the Rosebud Reservation, just south of Standing Rock.

However, unfortunately, the timing of the pandemic
necessitated the closure of the reservations, and

prevented further research;

and I have been unable to return since.

Needless to say, the story embodied within

this sculpture is  close to my heart!

And it is not lightly that I let go this artwork to a new owner. 

However, as our private collection grows, it moves in new directions…


Kevin packed up this


BLACKPIPE THE SIOUX: Carefully packed by Kevin Kirby and ready for shipment to SIOUX FALLS, South Dakota.


NOW … MACNEIL’s 1st bronze ~ BLACKPIPE ~

rests proudly Between a mini



and a mini of Jo Davidson’s FDR

With Jo Davidson’s “unique bronze bust”

of his first studio teacher


looking on from the other side.



BLACK PIPE (1894) and PONY EXPRESS (1940)

ARE MACNEIL’S alpha & omega

of bronze works …

They are side by side now.


James Kirby comments:

Wonderful to see Black Pipe

“in pride of place”

(as my British wife says)

properly ensconced in your

impressive collection!

Thank you for sharing these photos with us.

ALL very happy!




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This website has found the


Roundels in existence.

BLACK PIPE #1 – Found by this website in 2017 Made in 1894

BLACK PIPE #2 – Found by this website in 2022Made in 1894












THE EAST COAST (Massachusetts);


THE WEST COAST (California)

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Below is the 2017 Story of Discovering


123 Year old Bas Relief of “Black Pipe The Sioux at Six Teen Years” has been reported to www.HermonAtkinsMacNeil.com

The next post tells the 2022 Story of

The Discovery of


⇓  ⇓  ⇓  ⇓  ⇓  ⇓ 

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After 130 years, Black Pipe, the Sioux, has returned to South Dakota, on “Native American Day” ~ ~ now “Indigenous Peoples Day.”

“BLACK PIPE, THE SIOUX, AT SIX TEEN YEARS.” These words are what MacNeil wrote on this bronze roundlette, a bas-relief, circa 1894.

This piece, one of only two known to exist,  [CLICK HERE for the other]

dates to 1894 and was possibly cast in bronze by its sculptor:

    Hermon MacNeil

     Now it resides in


       at the home of the webmaster.


Hermon MacNeil’s BLACK PIPE work was a product of lean days.  Following the closing of the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair, both artists and Fair workers had tough times.   In 1894, Hermon found himself “stranded” in Chicago. 

For a while, he earned meals in exchange for drawing sketches of patrons in a Chicago restaurant.  (He learned that livelihood while traveling  through France years before). Eventually, his prospects would begin to improve. 

Fifty years later after a lifetime of sculpting, remembering that era of his life, he wrote:

“I finished my work at the “Chicago Fair” and it (The Fair) was a great success.  The best combination of buildings in the then prevalent classic style, ever put together for any Fair.

I took a small studio in Chicago and tried to see if I could make a go of it.  C. F. Browne was also stranded there and I invited him to share the studio with me.  During that year (evenings) I was asked to teach sculpture and drawing in the School of the Art Institute and also had the good fortune to have four bas-reliefs to do illustrating the life of Pere Marquette.”   [Autobiographical Sketch, Hermon Atkins MacNeil, June 1943, page 5.]

The Indian had caught Hermon’s fancy.  Beginning with Buffalo Bill Cody’s “Wild West Show” just outside the gate of the Chicago Fair, MacNeil saw Cody’s dramatic spectacle many times.  He always carried a sketch book and drew whatever he saw. 

Black Pipe later became the model for Primitive Indian Music.


One day walking down Adams Street, Hermon recognized a really long haired Indian looking down and out walking along the sidewalk.  He looked hungry and cold.  Hermon had sketched many Indians while attending Buffalo Bill Cody’s Wild West Show. 

“So I stopped and chatted with him and found he was stranded.”  Mac brought him to the studio, warmed him, fed him and began modeling him.  In four hours, MacNeil had made a full head profile relief, and titled it Black Pipe, the Sioux at Six Teen Years.

 Like many other artists of the time, Hermon sculpted what he saw.  This Indian had indeed “caught his fancy.” 


Chicago. In fact, 1985, in general, had been a productive year for the sculptor. MacNeil had found Black Pipe, (the Sioux from Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show), cold and hungry on the streets of Chicago.  He took him in as studio help and a model for future sculptures.   That vision of Black Pipe remained in Hermon’s artistic memory and appeared again many times.

For October 2023,


will be the featured theme of

upcoming posts


Related Posts:

  1. The “Apache Papoose” an early Native American study by Hermon MacNeil (10.811)

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Since 2010 this website has been dedicated to

perpetuating the Legacy of

Hermon Atkins MacNeil 

#      #     #      #      #

Jay H. Cline

 has been a majorly contributor

to that  Legacy


  1. He literally wrote the book on The Standing Liberty Quarter.
  2. That book became “the collector’s Bible” for that mintage. 
  3. Through four Editions (between 1975 1nd 2007) he updated, expanded, and refined his research.
  4. He ran J. H. Cline Rare Coins specializing in the The Standing Liberty Quarter for more that forty years.
  5. No other numismatist has devoted as much research, writing, publication, and business practice to the knowledge, identification and appreciation of Hermon MacNeil’s creative design.
  6. A Row of Liberty Standing Quarters is our LEAD Header.
  7. This is our 4th Posting in August 2023 telling some of the story of this amazing Numismatist. 

Jay H. Cline

After his death …

Over a 100 messages of condolence from collectors

were posted on the

Collectors Universe Website

Many who met JAY expressed their sorrow.

Many who never met him shared condolences.

Many more had only met him through his book on the SLQ.

ALL felt a sorrow and void with loss of a dedicated expert.


  • I’m shocked and this is hard to believe. Last I saw him he was in good shape and animated; looked like he had 10-20 years more before retirement. 
  • I met him only once but he was a genuinely nice guy and easy to talk to.  Condolences to the family.
  • Sad news. Jay had a coin shop in Dayton Ohio for years. … Miss his coin stories!  RIP Jay.
  • My sympathies to Mr. Cline’s family. image
  • Immediately thought of the dealer with the Top Hat and Standing Liberty Quarters. Rest in Peace! >>
  • Find a Hundred more at CUW


FYI.  BELOW IS one of my previous postings on MacNeil’s Liberty Standing Quarter. 

MacNeil’s masterpiece still circulated during my childhood.  Below is my childhood story:

Collecting the Standing Liberty Quarter – Part One

The Standing Liberty Quarter

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“Ohioans shut down an effort to make it harder to amend Ohio’s state constitution. Future state constitutional amendments will still pass with a simple majority, rather than the 60 percent threshold that Issue 1 proposed. Abortion-rights activists saw Issue 1’s defeat as a victory, with a November abortion-rights vote on the horizon in the Buckeye State.”   Zach Montellaro, National political reporter”. from POLITICO [https://www.politico.com/2023-election/results/ohio/ballot-measures/] Retrieved on Aug. 11, 2023,

McKinley VIEWS:

  • “I am for America because America is for the common people.”   1 ~ William McKinley
  • “The mission of the United States is one of benevolent assimilation. ~ William McKinley, December 21, 1898.   https://www.azquotes.com/quote/1224569
  • “Unlike any other nation, here the people rule, and their will is the supreme law.”  ~ William McKinley

The Statue of Wm. McKinley stands in front of the Ohio Capitol looking out over the city of Columbus. I always marvel at MacNeil’s works all over the U.S. of A.



  1. 1 America, People, Common; McKinley, William (1893). “Speeches and addresses of William McKinley, from his election to Congress to the present time.”, p.194, Best Books
  2. https://www.azquotes.com/author/9869-William_McKinley

Related posts:

  1. H. A. MacNeil Sculpted the McKinley Monument at Ohio State Capitol (15.3)   The following article (by our Webmaster) was accepted for…
  2. MacNeil’s statue of Wm. McKinley stands above Screaming Protestors. (10.9) At the stately doors of the Columbus, Ohio Capitol,  protestors…
  3. DC Capitol Assault? by “Trump-it-eers!” ~~ What Would Will Rogers Say about January 6, 2021 ? (5.7) Jo Davidson was the “studio boy” for Hermon Atkins MacNeil…
  4. William McKinley –A President Assassinated by a Anarchist Protestor. (5.6) Angry Protestors at the Ohio Capitol screamed over their governor’s…
  5. ~ Missouri State Capitol Fire of February 5, 1911 ~ Resulted in new Sculptures by Hermon A. MacNeil and Others ~ MacNeil Month 2013 (5.2) On February 5, 1911 lightning struck the Missouri Capitol in…
  6. Presidents Day 2020 ~~ MacNeil Month ~~ Wm. McKinley ~~ Abe Lincoln ~~ Geo. Washington ~~ “THEY ARE ALL THERE” — H.A MacNeil’s Sculptures of 3 Presidents ~~ (4.9)  “They are still there” celebrates several re-visits and discoveries of…

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Here is ONE place to go to see sculpture of Hermon A. MacNeil & his students. Located in cities from east to west coast, found indoors and out, public and private, these creations point us toward the history and values that root Americans.

Daniel Neil Leininger ~ HAMacNeil@gmail.com
Hosting & Tech Support: Leiturgia Communications, Inc.           WATCH US GROW


1. Take digital photos of the work from all angles, including setting.
2. Take close up photos of details that you like
3. Look for MacNeil’s signature. Photograph it too! See examples above.
4. Please, include a photo of you & others beside the work.
5. Tell your story of adventure. It adds personal interest.
6. Send photos to ~ Webmaster at: HAMacNeil@gmail.com