Cuyahoga County 

Soldiers' & Sailors' Monument

Welcome to Cuyahoga County's Civil War Monument

The Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument commemorates the American Civil War; it consists of a 125' column surrounded at its base by a Memorial Room and esplanade. The column, topped with a statue of the Goddess of Freedom, defended by the Shield of Liberty, signifies the essence of the Nation for which Cuyahoga County veterans were willing to and did give their lives. Four bronze groupings on the esplanade depict, in battle scenes, the Navy, Artillery, Infantry and Cavalry.

Inside the Memorial Room are four bronze relief sculptures:  Women's Soldiers' and Sailors' Aid Society,  Beginning of the War in Ohio, Emancipation of the Slaves and End of the War at City Point, Va., as well as busts of Gen. James Barnett and Architect/ Sculptor Levi T. Scofield, together with 6 officers, who were either killed in action,  or died of disease or their wounds.

The Monument Mourns the Loss of Commissioner Donald Jaffe

Don served our country in the U.S. Army Reserve, Judge Advocate General's Corp. He graduated with honors from the US Army-Military Intelligence School and obtained a honorable discharge with the rank of Captain.

He continued his military career with the Ohio Military Reserve (part of Ohio General's Department Initial Appointment-Staff Judge Advocate, raising in rank from Major to Colonel. He was later appointed Deputy Commander and promoted to Brigadier General.

His long lists of accomplishments included, Law Clerk, US Court of Appeals, 6th District, Trust officer at Union Commerce Bank, Assistant Law Director and Prosecutor, City of Cleveland Heights, Assistant U S Attorney & Chief, Civil Section. He was admitted to practice in all Ohio Courts and the U S Supreme Court while in private practice since 1972. He also served as part time Acting Judge of the City of Cleveland Heights and the City of Shaker Heights Municipal Courts. Donald served as an Arbitrator for the Better Business Bureau, hearing officer for the Ohio Department of Education and the Ohio Department of Health until recently.

Donald was also a Life member of the Ohio Bar Association, Ohio State Bar Foundation and an active trustee for the Cuyahoga County Solders & Sailors Monument since 2014.

Notice of Commission Meeting

Wednesday, February 7, 2024


The Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument Commission will meet on Wednesday, February 7, 2024 at 6:00pm in the Monument located at 3 Public Square, Cleveland, Ohio | 216-443-6878.

For the Commission

Greg Palumbo

Executive Director

Podcast Episode 4 - Thomas Nast's Santa Clause

Caretaker Krista Castillo sits down with Executive Director Greg Palumbo to discuss Santa Clause in the Civil War

Annually the Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument hosts "Patriotic Santa" for the Winterland festivities and Saturdays in December. Caretaker Krista Castillo and Executive Director Greg Palumbo discuss the origins of Santa Clause and the contributions of Harper's Weekly cartoonist Thomas Nast to our American idea of Santa Clause which was popularized during the Civil War and on through the 1880s. 

Podcast Special Edition

Featuring a Discussion with Frm. Acting Secretary of the Navy, Thomas B. Modly on his book Vectors. 

In this special installment of the Cuyahoga County Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument Podcast Commission President Richard Prasse has a conversation with the Honorable Thomas B. Modly, former Acting Secretary of the Navy and author of Vectors: Heroes, Villains, & Heartbreak on the Bridge of the U.S. Navy.

Find Vectors: Heroes, Villains, and Heartbreak on the Bridge of the U.S. Navy at 

Dedication of the Daniel R Fields Family Monument in Erie Street Cemetery

On June 16, 2023 the Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument was honored to have the family of Daniel R Fields attend the dedication of a monument to the Fields Family buried in Erie Street Cemetery. Dan Fields was a Caretaker at the Monument who had served as the model for one of our most prominent statuary panels and worked on the Monument during the construction. He was, however, from Louisiana, a slave State until the end of the Civil War. Dan would have been between 12 and 16 years old when the war ended, based on different sources, which means there was a chance he himself had been enslaved. Dan's story is told daily in the Monument and serves to connect visitors to the Civil War. 

Many thanks to our officiant Dr. Burris of First Baptist of Greater Cleveland, the congregation to which the Fields Family belonged. 

Thank you to Milano Monuments for their efforts to repurpose stone remaning from the Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument Court of Honor which was left over after the redesign of Public Square. Without their generosity this project would not have been possible.

Open Internship Opportunities

The Cuyahoga County Monument Commission is happy to announce two seasonal winter paid-internship opportunities.  

Summer Internships for 2024

Click Here for more information on author Lauren Pacini's book Honoring Their Memory: Levi Scofield, Cleveland's Monumental Architect and Sculptor

New Day Cleveland Downtown Road Trip

Thank you to Fox8's David Moss and New Day Cleveland for stopping by the Monument on their Downtown Road Trip. Watch the segment on YouTube where the Moss-man talks with Executive Director Greg Palumbo about our Cleveland treasure.