Directly before you in the square stands the soldiers and sailors monument, erected in 1874 by the Lancaster County Monumental Association to honor the brave men and women of Lancaster County who died to save the Union during the Civil War. The monument is constructed of white granite in the Gothic style, and depicts men on pedestals at each corner from four branches of the Armed Service: Infantry, Artillery, Cavalry and Navy. Overlooking all stands the genius of Liberty, her sword pointing downward signifying the end of the bitter conflict.
The idea to establish a memorial to the fallen dead originated at a meeting of the Soldiers and Sailors Union which elected a committee, later known as the Lancaster County Monumental Association, to spearhead a drive for the construction of a monument in Penn Square. From December 2-7, 1867, the Patriot Daughters of Lancaster, the first society organized to aid the Union soldiers, held a ladies fair benefit in the Fulton Hall and raised $3,500 toward their $20,000 goal. The remainder of the monies was obtained through donations and from the militia fund and military taxes released from the Lancaster County Treasury.
Several years later, on July 4, 1874, the completed monument was proudly dedicated. Rosina Hubey, a leader in the drive to erect the monument, voiced the hope that it would be, "a perpetual reminder to all people of the country as they gather week-to-week to barter and chaffer in the market place, that there is something higher and better than self or produce, bargains or bank notes."