The National Monument

Costa Rica’s Cherished Statue

Bronze National Monument in a beautiful city park.
The National Monument in the National Park.

The National Monument is a bronze statue that commemorates Costa Rica’s victory in the War of 1856-57. Although the War of 1856-57 was not a war of Independence, it was a war where the independence of the nation was at stake, which is why the National Monument was unveiled September 15th, 1895, to celebrate that year’s Independence Day, starting a long tradition for everyone in San Jose Costa Rica to celebrate the special anniversary surrounding the monument.

The War of 1856-57, also known as the National Campaign, was fought against William Walker’s invading forces when he took over Nicaragua and declared himself the president in order to establish a slave state. In an effort to free Nicaragua from William Walker and his army of mercenaries and to suppress the impending threat of invasion from this Tennessee filibuster, Costa Rica led a fearless and victorious war campaign that established once and for all Costa Rica’s right to be an independent and sovereign nation.

The National Monument statue honors all parties involved in the National Campaign, which ended in May of 1857. Each element in this majestic sculpture is symbolic by nature. Each woman represents a Central American nation; their weaponry the different ethnic backgrounds fighting for the cause; and the fleeing William Walker running over a dead soldier represents the invading force’s defeat.

Hidden symbols, privileged information and the global historical context will also be shared with those fortunate enough to take our free walking tour in San Jose Costa Rica.

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