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Public Art

Margaret R. Kincaid Fountain

By Nancy Coonsman Hahn
Category: Fountain


Mrs. Margaret Kincaid of Louisiana, Missouri, bequested funds for a drinking fountain in “some park in St. Louis” with the stipulation that the competition be open only to women. Nancy Coonsman Hahn, a former student of George Zolnay’s at Washington University, was selected. Hahn’s proposal for two nude girls being sprayed by four frog fountain figures caused an uproar: The Women’s Protective League demanded clothing; a newspaper cartoon covered the girls with raincoats; and the Union Trust Company, custodian of the funds, demanded a revision. The exasperated sculptor’s new design, inspired by old Italian well heads, is a high-relief of six very young children who dance around the fountain base carrying a garland. The artist also designed the two concrete benches nearby which are supported by elves.

Dimensions: 3′ x 2′ x 2′
Year Completed: 1915
Material: Bronze and granite
Owner: City of St. Louis
Donor: Margaret Kincaid

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