The Gate Museum


Hungarian Freedom Fighter Statue Unveiling and Multimedia Exhibit at the Millennium Gate


Join the Hungarian American CoalitionHonorary Consulate General of Atlanta and the local Hungarian American community for the unveiling of the 1956 Hungarian Freedom Fighter statue and the accompanying Multimedia Exhibit at Millennium Gate Museum! They have worked together with National Monuments Foundation sculptor Stan Mullins to create a new statue to honor the heroes of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution. It is the first of its kind in Georgia.

Rodney Mims Cook Jr., the founder of The Millennium Gate Museum and Park, said the park narrative highlights the virtues of Peace, Justice and Freedom and the world-class sculpture within the park demonstrates that. Numbers of freedom fighters grace the park already. The Hungarian Freedom Fighter statue will be an important historical addition to the park narrative and ensemble on 17th Street. Cook says, “She not only reflects courage and freedom of the Hungarian nation, but is a beauty in her own right."

Erika Szeles, photograph by Vagn Hansen

Hungarian Freedom Fighter by Stan Mullins, sc.

"Based on the 15 year old Freedom Fighter Erika Szeles, she evokes Liberty Leading the People the symbol of France, by Delacroix. The French call her Marianne, and her face is the standard used for the French created Statue of Liberty in New York. The Hungarian gift will add to the cultural landscape of our city and state and draw even more visitors to Georgia, the Global Peace Center,” Cook said.

Liberty Leading the People by Eugène Delacroix, Louvre Museum

Lady Liberty by Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi and Alexandre-Gustave Eiffel, New York Harbor

In 1956, students and workers banded together in an epic David vs Goliath struggle to bring the seemingly invincible Soviet Union to its knees when no one else dared. Following 13 days of hard-won freedom from October 23 – November 4, the Revolution was crushed by Soviet forces and thousands were imprisoned or killed. More than 200,000 ’56-ers made the difficult decision to flee the country with 35,000 making their home in the U.S., including the great state of Georgia. This statue honors their legacy.

But these Hungarian heroes were not alone in their fight against Soviet tyranny and communism. So, this statue will also serve as a symbol for freedom loving patriots everywhere and as a stark reminder of what it takes to overcome the evils of communism.

To those who stayed. To those who left. To those who were lost. We remember.