20th Anniversary September 11 Memorial

20th Anniversary September 11 Memorial

by artist Sarah Langsam

The Township of Millburn extends a thank you to all those who helped make this public art piece happen, including our Department of Public Works, Showman Fabricators Inc., Pagnillo and Sons Masonry, Jeffery Langsam Architect, Eclipse Group and SEM Engineering Consultants.

Project Description

Millburn’s 20th Anniversary September 11th memorial features two pieces of steel that were recovered from Ground Zero. Surrounding these artifacts are 420 rings that commemorate the 412 first responders and 8 Millburn townspeople who lost their lives in the attacks. Four different sized rings are utilized to remember the townspeople, firefighters and fire personnel, police officers, and EMTs that perished. While the 420 rings are distinguishable individually, they are actually connected, creating two strong, solid, surfaces of metal. This speaks to the strength and resiliency of the Millburn community following the attacks. 

This public art installation consists of four elements - two sculptures and two benches. In using two of each element, the installation references the two towers where those commemorated lost their lives. The semi-circular shape of each element is a nod to the millwheel and Millburn’s history. The two sculptures sit parallel to each other, so when one sees the installation head on, it looks as if the rings are interlocking. As one moves around the circle the appearance of the installation changes. The inclusion of benches transforms the area into a meeting space, inviting the public to sit and reflect. 

The installation is fabricated in galvanized steel, which is rougher than other finishes such as stainless or powder coated steel. It is not shiny or glossy, not necessarily uniform throughout. The use of this rougher steel speaks to the ugliness of the attacks. The footprint of the memorial is 25’ – 0” x 13’ – 6.5”. Each sculpture is 11’ – 10.5” wide and 6’ – 0” tall. The benches are 11’ – 10.5” wide, 1’ – 6” tall, and 5’ – 11.25” deep.

On September 11th local artist Sarah Langsam was in elementary school just three and a half miles from the memorial’s location in Crescent Park. Her fourth cousin was one of the eight Millburn townspeople lost that day. Langsam writes, “The attacks on the twin towers affected everyone in our communities. Everybody I know, who lived in the area then, have their individual memories and experiences of that day. Yet we also share a special bond with one another. We remember the profound hurt, sorrow and shock. But we also remember how the community came together through the outpouring of love, support, and patriotism. It is an incredible honor it is to create this space for reflection and remembrance.”

With the 20th anniversary of September 11th, 2001 occurring this year, the Township of Millburn has commissioned a memorial designed by artist Sarah Langsam. The memorial will serve as a dedication to the 412 first responders and 8 Millburn Township residents who lost their lives that day and all those impacted. Steel pieces retrieved from the World Trade Center, in the Township’s possession, will be the focal element of this memorial at Crescent Park, adjacent to the Short Hills Train Station.

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