From the entrance of the Bellefontaine Cemetery, turn right at the first street (adjacent to the information building on the right at the entrance), and follow the white center line past two small lakes on the right – the obelisk is on the right near the second lake.
The obelisk is constructed of North Carolina pink granite. At the base it is 18 x 16 inches and soars 18 feet into the sky. The obelisk displays a cross in its own shadow at solar noon on three days each year – the vernal equinox on about March 21, the summer solstice on about June 21, and the autumnal equinox on about September 22.
William Conrad Severson (1924-1999) was a St. Louis sculptor whose public artwork celebrated the sun. Examples are Solaris located at TECO Plaza in Tampa FL, Cosmos located in Saudi Arabia, and the sculptures of Les Danseuses and Primogenesis, both located in Clayton MO. Severson designed and had built the memorial obelisk for his family grave site, where he now rests as well.
Owner: Bellefontaine Cemetery
Designer: William Conrad Severson
Builder: Puritan Granite Co., Inc.
Construction Date: 1990
St. Louis Sundial Trail