On May 2nd, 2008 the statue of Arabella “Belle” Babb Mansfield was dedicated on the west side of the Iowa Wesleyan University campus. This statue, honoring the legacy of Belle, was made possible through the support of the Vilsack Foundation, the Iowa State Bar Association Foundation, and more than 115 alumni and friends of Iowa Wesleyan University.
Spearheaded by Dr. Christie Vilsack, former First Lady of the State of Iowa, the statue is visible from most campus buildings, including Sheaffer-Trieschmann Hall, traditionally a women’s residence hall, as well as placed along with one of the main thoroughfares of the Mount Pleasant community. “I want girls growing up here to know that women can do and be anything they choose,” Vilsack notes. “I want young women who consider attending Iowa Wesleyan to know that this community has always nurtured women who achieve. I want student-athletes who compete at the college, children riding their bikes to school, and visitors from far away who come to Mount Pleasant to learn about Belle Babb Mansfield.”
The bronze statue was crafted by sculptor Benjamin Victor, a renowned artist who specializes in monumental representations of the human form. Victor is recognized as the youngest artist to ever have a sculpture installed in National Statuary Hall in Washington D.C.