Cyrus E. Dallin (1861-1944)
Massasoit, ca. 1911-1921
Coles Hill, Plymouth, MA
Without the Wampanoag Indians, early Pilgrims would have had almost nothing to put on their Thanksgiving table, and likely nothing to wear to the party. The Wampanoag taught the Pilgrims how to grow beans and corn, how to dig for shellfish, and how to hunt for food and clothing. Inspired by Massasoit, the Wampanoag leader, Cyrus Dallin created a monumental sculpture of him to celebrate the tercentenary of the Pilgrim colony.
The statue boldly stands near a plaque commemorating the National Day of Mourning, an annual gathering also held on the fourth Thursday of November, when people remember the sacrifices of American Indians and protest ongoing discrimination against Native peoples.