Title: Still Standing
Size: 24” x 9” x 8”
The old west was not a place for the faint hearted. Those that trekked out west were those that braved the unknown in hopes of a better life. The odds were against those individual that sought to make a life for themselves in this new hostile environment. There were harsh weather conditions, scanty food and water resources, unpredictable interactions with wildlife, delicate relations with Natives and a host of dangerous opportunistic characters like horse thieves and highway robbers that hoped to prey upon defenseless homesteaders, and ranchers. There were a few that individuals that played a particular key role in bringing about the success and safety of the rest of this fledgling society. They were the brave scouts, the visionaries, and the lawmen. They put their lives on the line to stand between the settlers and whatever might cause their demise.
There is one lawman in particular that was responsible for almost single-handedly taming a great portion of western. His name was Orrin Porter Rockwell. He himself was a cattle rancher and business entrepreneur, so he wasn’t a lawman and gunfighter for the fame and glory. He simply knew that people needed help and he was one of the few men with the skillset and grit to take on the societies adversaries from that time. His marksmanship was legendary but the real legend of Porter Rockwell was told by a man of God that if he didn’t cut his hair, no blade or bullet from another person would ever harm him. Putting trust in that promise, it was recorded that Rockwell vested at least 24 men who sought to kill him, and brought many others to justice. He served deputy marshal as bodyguard, a gunfighter, a scout and hunter for a several pioneer companies, a militia leader, an ambassador to ensure peace with the Native Americans. The promise of protection proved true. When he finally died of natural causes, bullet holes were found in his clothes but not any past wounds, resulting from gunshots, on his body.
The bronze sculpture, entitled “Still Standing,” was inspired by the unselfish bravery that he performed by providing a place for society to prosper and not live in fear. It also represents and honors those individuals today that dedicate their lives and fight for a better and safer society for others.