This monument was fashioned in 1995 by Mennonites Esther K Augsburger and her son, Michael, from 3,000 guns collected by the District of Columbia Police in a buyback program funded by heavyweight boxing champ Riddick Bowe. The inspiration was Isaiah 2:4: “They shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.” The Augsburgers (Esther’s husband had been the President of Eastern Mennonite University) raised the $100,000 to construct and install the statue, which for 11 years was in the heart of downtown at the District police headquarters at Fourth and D streets NW. In 2008 the court complex at Judiciary Square was renovated, and the statue was replaced by a fountain. “Guns into Plowshares” ended up in a storage yard next to a sewage treatment plant. It was reinstalled, in 2011, in front of a remote police evidence facility in the southwest of the District, where tourist dare not tread. The Augsburger’s have offered to raise money to move the statue to a more accessible location, but the Police have refused.

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