If you were so depressed or grieving that all you could do is stare at the wall listlessly, unable to bring yourself to do anything, and then out the window you noticed a toddler ambling down the street with no adult in sight, on your worst day you would go out there and protect that child.
I made a peace pole that is in the center of a U-shaped high school in Illinois where, when there is an altercation, the students are told to take it out to the peace pole and figure out how to live together. On my worst day I would make that peace pole. If I could I would make them for free.
The downside is that it makes making other art feel frivolous in comparison.
The peace pole at that high school is limestone - one of the best things out of which to make peace pole. Since the beginning of time people have stood stones on end as monuments. It has a stateliness that serves this message well. Sometimes it is the choice for graduating class gifts to campuses. Sometimes they are memorials. One being arranged right now will be dedicated on June 12, 2017 in Orlando on the first anniversary of the nightclub massacre, within sight of where Obama laid the wreath.
7 feet tall after planting
Price . . . $5,500 (free shipping)
7 translations are included. Additional are $100 each. Up to 7 more can be added for a total of 14.
Commemorations and Dedications
If there is to be a dedication plaque, rather than applying a plaque to the pole I can carve the dedication into the pole as in the photo below (shot in the rain as it laid on my trailer).
Things like plaques that are attached to peace poles eventually come off. It is more durable if it is one solid piece of stone into which everything is carved.
Click on the image at right to open a photo formatted for printing out.
At left is a peace pole with 14 translations being prepared for shipping to UCLA. Below right is what one looks like when sealed in the crate.
If you do not have a loading dock, your peace pole can arrive on a truck that has a lift gate, as in the photo at right taken of a delivery to the Simi Valley United Methodist Church in California. The truck driver used the lift gate to set the peace pole on furniture dollies on the ground. From there it was rolled away - explained in more detail at this link.
These are 114 inches long (9.5 feet) long. 32 inches of it go underground. There is no need to meet the frost line since it is not load bearing. And it is not necessary to set it in cement. Just use a posthole digger to dig a narrow hole. Once the pole is in the hole, backfill it with the same earth that came out of the hole, tamping as you fill (see installation).
At left: peace plaza at Westminster High School, Maryland.
It is better not to backfill it with gravel or sand or crushed limestone. Such substances attract moisture. It should be surrounded by the same earth that comprises the area around it.
Since it will settle some in the beginning, the hole should be a little shallower than you want it to be five years from now (add gravel to raise the bottom of the hole if you dig too deep). It is not just the earth beneath it that keeps a post from sliding deeper. Once the earth has compacted around it, the friction on the sides of the pole becomes as important as the footing under it, but it takes a while to get compacted that well.
I suggest just setting it in the earth without cement because in America things change over the centuries. Landscaping gets redesigned. Wings get added onto buildings. And then the peace pole could have to be moved. If it is set in cement, that is difficult.
However, if you prefer setting it in cement, if you'd like to see a drawing for the cement foundation for a much larger stone pole, click here. That is the plan we used for installing a multi-ton stone peace pole.
The way the continents are counted in Europe and China produces the number 7. I have designed this to defer peacefully to the way half of the people on earth count the continents.