Artists: Wilson Eyre, Jr. (architect), Alexander S. Calder (sculptor)
Location: Logan Circle, Benjamin Franklin Parkway near 19th Street
The Swann Memorial Fountain, located on Logan Circle, also goes by the name of The Fountain of the Three Rivers. It was created as a memorial to the once president and founder of the Philadelphia Fountain Society, Dr. Wilson Cary Swann. The fountain is a beautiful representation of the three major bodies of water that make-up the Philadelphia region: the Schuylkill River, the Delaware River and the Wissahickon Creek. It was opened to the public during a ceremony in July 1924 and has been the backdrop for numerous events here in the City. Pope John Paul II celebrated mass there in 1979.
The fountain is the collaborative work of architect Wilson Eyre Jr. and sculptor Alexander S. Calder. Eyre, for his part, designed the fountainheads and the water reservoir (the basin). Calder created the three bronze statues, each of whom symbolizes Philadelphia's waterways. The sculpture of the young Native American girl represents the Wissahickon Creek, the Native American woman represents the Schuylkill River, and the Native American man symbolizes the Delaware River. The use of swans in the sculpture is a play on Dr. Swann's name.
The Calder family has a long history of creating sculptures and artwork for public display here in Philadelphia. Calder's father, Alexander Milne Calder, designed the William Penn statue on top of City Hall. Calder's son, Alexander Calder designed the mobile 'Ghosts' that hang in the grand stair hall of the Art Museum.