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In March 1866, several people of Deerfield, Massachusetts, formed a committee to put up a statue to those who had served and lost their lives in the Civil War. Within 18 months the statue was completed at a cost of just over $3,000. On September 4, 1867, a series of poems, prayers, and speeches was part of the official unveiling of the statue. The Union Battery of Springfield, Massachusetts, fired their cannon a number of times to mark the serious event. The bill for paying the Battery was written on the writing paper of the largest hotel in town by Smith R. Phillips (b. 1837), brother of the hotel's owner.