Oddfellows Memorial

Related to City Art
Installed 1921
A large, granite and sandstone memorial drinking fountain stands on a street corner. It has decorative elements including Tuscan columns, a Greek key relief, carved drapery above an inscription, and a geometric domed roof. Behind it are several skyscrapers.
A large, granite and sandstone memorial drinking fountain viewed from a corner angle. Behind it is Hyde Park, with large trees, ground foliage, and pedestrian paths.
A large, granite and sandstone memorial drinking fountain with an inscription reading, "1921 – For our king and country – Present to the City of Sydney by the Grand United Order of Oddfellows in honor and appreciation of the members who enlisted for active service in the Great War 1914-1919 and other conflicts.""

A drinking fountain erected in memory of Oddfellows Society members who served in World War 1.

Artist: Samuel Lipson

Artwork description

This memorial drinking fountain consists of a pink granite and sandstone monolith obelisk set on a stepped sandstone base. Around 3m high, it is located in the south-west corner of Hyde Park north, on the corner of Elizabeth and Park streets.

The foundation was erected in memory of the members of the Oddfellows Society who enlisted in World War 1. The Oddfellows movement began in 18th century Britain as a social club, but was reorganised in 1810 into friendly societies, insurance and lending organisations, including Manchester Unity. In the 1930s it boasted more than 5,000 lodges, with over a million members worldwide.


The fountain was created by Samuel Lipson (1901–1995), who was born in Leeds to Lithuanian Jewish immigrants and studied architecture at the Glasgow School of Arts. He arrived in Sydney in 1925 and first worked in the office of Henry E White, then the Commonwealth Department of Works.

Lipson was a partner in the Sydney architectural practice Lipson & Kaad, which became one of the most innovative and prominent in the period from the 1930s until the 1960s.

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