Bird and Flagpole
"Eagle, goose, or turkey, Wickham’s representation of a bird once flew high atop the flagpole that stood near his log cabin. The bird has few distinguishing characteristics other than a long neck and oblong body. One argument for its identification as a turkey might be Wickham’s sympathy for Benjamin Franklin’s submission of the American Turkey as the national bird. Wickham would have been familiar with the wild turkeys that populated the hills near his home. However, sightings of the American Bald Eagle, which is more often seen on flagpoles, have occurred in Tennessee, and the Canada Goose, a migrating bird, flocks through Tennessee skies every spring and fall.
The base of the flagpole was encased in concrete by Wickham and inscribed with the following message: They Say I Would Forsake the Flag Of My Native Land But Woe Unto the Foe Or Stranger Whose Sacrilegious Hands Would Touch Thee Or Endanger Flag of My Native Land. Wickham’s patriotism is undeniable. Removed from the pole by 1974, the bird later found a home on the nearby property of Wickham’s daughter, Mary Wickham Evans."- quoted text is from the 2001 Customs House Museum Online Wickham Exhibit
The quote on the base of the flagpole is from the following poem by Father Charles Constantine Pise(1801-1866).
The American Flag
(Click on image for larger view)
THEY SAY I WOULD FORSAKE THE FLAG OF MY NATIVE LAND,
This inscription is also found on the base of the flagpole in the Wickham Cemetery near the angel statue.
Get a souvenir of this statue at the new online Wickham Stone Park Gift Shop