Pulitzer winning author Willa Cather gets statue at U.S. Capitol

Published: Jun. 7, 2023 at 5:34 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (Gray DC) - With the pull of a rope, one of Nebraska’s most celebrated native daughters began her permanent residency at the US Capitol.

Willa Cather is the first Pulitzer winning author to join Statuary Hall.

“Cather’s vivid, reflective writing has become synonymous with the pioneer spirit of Nebraska,” said Nebraska Senator Deb Fischer.

“A number of her works feature featured honest and rich retellings of the challenges faced by Nebraskans and our intimate relationship to the land,” said Nebraska Congressman Adrian Smith.

Each state gets two statues in the halls of congress.

Cather is the 12th woman on display, joining the ranks of Amelia Earhart, and Rosa Parks.

The artist behind the piece is also making history. Littleton Alston is the first African American sculptor to have a commission displayed at the Capitol.

“A Nebraska artist honoring Nebraska artists. And we all get to enjoy it today,” remarked Representative Don Bacon.

Nebraska Governor Jim Pillen explains Cather was selected for her work in immortalizing the Nebraskan Great Plains experience through literature, and for her spirt.

“She said, I only want impossible things. The others don’t interest me,” quote Pillen.

Cather’s most famous works include The Song of the Lark, and My Antonia.