Friend to Friend Masonic Memorial
The Friend to Friend Masonic Memorial is a monument located in the annex of the Gettysburg National Cemetery in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. Built by the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania, it commemorates Confederate Brigadier General Lewis Addison Armistead entrusting Union Captain Henry H. Bingham with his personal effects, most notably a pocket watch, on the third day of the Battle of Gettysburg, during Pickett’s Charge.
Pickett’s Charge was an assault upon the Union Army center on the last day of the Battle of Gettysburg. The charge, the high tide of the Confederate States of America, was repulsed. Confederate general Armistead, under George Pickett’s command, personally led his men up the hill to the Union position. Armistead was shot twice. Severely wounded, and fearing that his personal effects would be stolen by Union soldiers, he “gave a Masonic sign asking for assistance”. Union Captain Bingham, an aide to Major General Winfield Scott Hancock, a personal friend of Armistead, then came to his aid as he lay wounded: Armistead, Bingham, and Hancock were all Freemasons. After ensuring Armistead that his possessions would be sent to his family, particularly his pocket watch, Bingham took Armistead to a field hospital, where Armistead died two days later on the George Spangler farm.
The monument’s sculptor was Ron Tunison of Cairo, New York, who was himself a Freemason. The sculpture is made of polychrome bronze.
The statue was dedicated by the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania on August 21, 1993.