This Fairhaven Monument Wasn’t Always in This Spot
If you drive down Route 6 in Fairhaven, you’ve probably driven by this monument many times, but never taken a moment to reflect on who it honors – or how it got there.
The Henry Huttleston Rogers monument on property of Fairhaven High School, right at the corner of Route 6 and Main Street, is a fitting memorial to the town’s great benefactor.
Yet it wasn’t always in that location.
The idea for the memorial came about following Rogers’ death in 1909. It’s no surprise considering all he built for the people of Fairhaven – the Millicent Library, the Town Hall, Fairhaven High School and the Unitarian Memorial Church, just to name a few – that they would want to build something to honor him.
Rogers came from humble beginnings on Middle Street to become one of the wealthiest men in America, and while he built grandiose buildings for his town, the monument to him is elegant in its simplicity.
The memorial shaft was erected on January 12, 1912, at the intersection of Main Street and Huttleston Avenue (which is now also known as Route 6).
According to a Fairhaven Star newspaper article posted on the website of the Millicent Library, it cost $4,000 and took nearly two years of planning.
The 30-foot granite column also features a likeness of Rogers along with a plaque that reads “In grateful recognition of the worth achievements of Henry Huttleston Rogers, the people of Fairhaven have erected this memorial."
It also is engraved with the Latin “SI MONVMENTVN REQVIRIS CIRCVMSPICE,” which roughly translates to “if you seek his monument, look around,” eluding to the mark Rogers left on Fairhaven.
So how and why did the memorial get moved from the road to the school grounds?
According to that same Fairhaven Star article, “The structure became a hazard due to increased traffic in the area and was blamed for numerous automobile accidents. It was moved to its present site on the grounds of the high school on Tuesday, April 5, 1966.”
The Fairhaven Office of Tourism reports that the monument was moved by Rex Monuments, a company that has been in business since H.H. Rogers was still alive, opening for business in 1892 – the same year of the Borden murders over in Fall River. Rex Monuments is now up for sale.