One hot August day in the late 1960’s near Palmyra, Tennessee, E.T. Wickham put down his trowel from working on the statue of Civil War heroes Sam Davis and Bill Marsh. After resting in the shade for awhile, he walked to a nearby hickory tree and tacked a small wooden sign to it. The sign read:
Whether this actually happened or not, it cannot be denied there is a lot of stone in the park. From 1950 to his death in 1970, he molded some forty tons of concrete into statues of Indian chiefs, politicians, patriots, and religious figures. The record shows that during this period he built over 30 life-size concrete statues. Eight of these statues had formal unveilings during dedication ceremonies attended by many politicians and local dignitaries.
In all of America there are only a handful of sculpture sites like this one. By any measure, Enoch Tanner Wickham was an exceptional folk artist. He was also my grandfather, and I hope you enjoy the artwork displayed at his park.
-Arlen Schibig May, 2005