Hospers Memorial Statues

Although Hospers is best known for their veterans memorial with no names,  they also have an interesting collection of statues located at their public library.   The collection was created by the same artist, Fred Reinders. 

Location:  Hospers Public Library in Hospers, Iowa.  The intersection of 3rd Ave N and Main Ave in Hospers, Iowa.

What’s included in the Hospers Memorial Statues? 

The monuments include:

  • A tribute to Iwo Jima –  It’s a four sided pyramid with a female figure watching.  The well known flag raising scene is featured on one side 

A Goddess of Victory –  represents winning the war and moving towards peace. 

A statue of liberty–  She clutches a book inscribed with the word LAW. For without law, liberty cannot be upheld.”

A four-headed dragon.  I’ve read that the four heads represent the four reasons of war: hate, greed, jealousy and envy.  However, when I evaluated the photos –  the word pride appears on one of the dragons, so I’m not if something changed or which version is correct.

When was it created?

The memorials were created in 1945 to celebrate the end of World War II.   They were dedicated on Sept 15, 1945, about 25 years after the World War I memorial that is situated in the middle of Main Street.  The pieces were modeled in cement and chicken wire mesh.  

Who created the Hosper Memorials?

The Hospers Memorial Statues were built by Fred Reinders. He was born in the Netherlands in 1874.  It is believed that he was enrolled in art school as early as the age of 6.  When Reinders was nineteen years old, he immigrated to the United State and after spending some time in South Dakota, he came to Hospers, Iowa. 

He worked as a house painter, then furniture salesman, as well as a mortician.  When he retired in 1935, he dedicated his time to his hobbies of sculpting and painting.  

Over the years, the statues have received care and restorations for Dordt College Art Professor Jake Van Wyk and Dordt alumnus Josh Wynia. 

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