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~ 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 200 of stories & 2,000 photos form this virtual MacNeil Gallery stretching east to west  New York to New Mexico ~ Oregon to S. Carolina.   ~ 2021 marks the 155th Anniversary of Hermon MacNeil’s birth. ~~Do you WALK or DRIVE by MacNeil sculptures DAILY!   ~~ CHECK it OUT!

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

Jul
13

Hermon MacNeil’s bronze bust of Evangelist Dwight L. Moody (1920) ~ “We Found It, Uncle Hermon!”

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Bust of Dwight L. Moody, Evangelist, made by MacNeil in 1920 for the  Mount Hermon Academy in Northfield, assachusetts

Bust of Dwight L. Moody, Evangelist, made by MacNeil in 1920 for the Mount Hermon Academy in Northfield, assachusetts

At age 78 Hermon MacNeil wrote an autobiographical sketch in June 1943 from his home in College Point.   A copy of it is in the MacNeil Papers at the Cornell Library Archives.  My sister, Melba, found a copy in mother’s family files.

Only 13 typed pages in length, MacNeil’s Sketches provides brief reflections on his life and a listing of his sculptures.   The list catalogues 42 pieces that he made in his nearly fifty years as a sculptor.  One very brief entry says simply:

“D. L. Moody. Northfield University, Mass., 1920”

MacNeil’s mention of a sculpture of D. L. Moody was my first awareness that he had ever done such a piece.   

Searching the internet I found TWO photos (one on the right and another larger one below). They both come from the Northfield Mount Hermon (Click HERE)  website.  The school is a merger of the two academies for poor and underprivileged children (one for girls and one for boys) that Moody founded in 1879 and 1881. A  brief history of the school can be found on Wikipedia. [Click Here].

MORE below photo:

"Dwight L. Moody" 1920 - A bust by Hermon Atkins MacNeil now graces the campus of Northfield Mount Hermon academy in Massachusetts. The school is a merger of the two separate academies (one for girls and one for boys) that Moody founded in 1879 and 1881

“Dwight L. Moody” 1920 – A bust by Hermon Atkins MacNeil now graces the campus of Northfield Mount Hermon academy in Massachusetts. The school is a merger of the two separate academies (one for girls and one for boys) that Moody founded in 1879 and 1881

While I await confirmation from NMH, this undoubtedly appears to be the work referenced by Hermon in his autobiograhical sketches as a 78 year old man. While finding ‘undiscovered’ works by Hermon MacNeil over the last 3 years, has been one recurring delight of building this website, I never cease to be amazed when I find one.  This particular discovery seems amazing for several reasons:  

  • Both of my Parents (Rev. Louis Lee Leininger, Sr. and Ollie McNeil Leininger) attended Moody Bible institute in Chicago in 1926-28.
  • I never heard my parents ever mention this sculpture.
  • If my mother knew of  “Uncle Hermon’s” bust of Dr. Moody, she would have mentioned it , repeatedly!
  • To my knowledge, my parents never visited in Massachusetts, never saw, or ever knew of this piece.
  • This is a one of a kind piece. Thus hard to find in a private school. Not known to the general public.
  • I have no information on how it was commissioned, or how Hermon MacNeil became connected with this project.

 STAY TUNED !  There has got to be MORE.   I will let you know as soon as I find it. 

ENJOY these lovely close-ups from the NMH website!!!

 

 

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WHAT YOU FIND HERE.

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
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