The Hiker

300 Main Street
Knoxville, TN 37902

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About

The Hiker is a statue created by Theo Alice Ruggles Kitson. It commemorates the American soldiers who fought in the Spanish–American War, the Boxer Rebellion and the Philippine–American War. The first version of it was made for the University of Minnesota in 1906, but at least 50 copies were made, and were erected widely across the United States. The Hiker depicts a hero stripped of his parade uniform and shown as a soldier reacting to the challenges of the battlefield.


When she created The Hiker, Kitson already had a reputation for sculpting war memorial statues. For the title of her work, Kitson used the term that American soldiers in both the Spanish–American War and the Philippine–American War gave themselves: "hikers". Leonard Sefing, Jr., a Spanish–American War veteran from Allentown, Pennsylvania, was selected as the model for the statue after a photograph of him was entered into a national contest.