PARIS – In a story July 4 on the unveiling of a statue of Thomas Jefferson in Paris, The Associated Press erroneously reported that Jefferson served as George Washington's minister to France in 1785. The Second Continental Congress appointed Jefferson minister. Washington was not president at the time.
— France marked the Fourth of July by honoring Thomas Jefferson with a statue and Rosa Parks with a sports complex. The mayors of Paris and Washington did the honors.
"This is a great monument to a great American in a very important place in Paris," Washington Mayor Anthony Williams said as the bronze, 10-foot-tall statue of Jefferson was unveiled on the Left Bank of the Seine River, near the Solferino Bridge.
Paris Mayor Bertrand Delanoe called Jefferson a "universal man ... inspired by the ideas of the Enlightenment." He called the third U.S. president "a great man, a great Parisian."
Jefferson lived in Paris before the French Revolution, serving as minister to the country in 1785.
The Florence Gould Foundation, which aims to strengthen trans-Atlantic ties, and Franco-American art dealer Guy Wildenstein donated the statue to Paris. The figure was sculpted by French artist Jean Cardot, whose other works in the French capital include statues of Winston Churchill and Gen. Charles de Gaulle.
Earlier, the two mayors unveiled a huge black-and-white photograph of Parks at the entrance to a sports complex in southern Paris inaugurated in March in her name. The American civil rights hero died in October.
Parks was arrested in December 1955 for refusing to give up her seat to a white man on a bus in racially segregated Montgomery, Ala. The event sparked the historic Montgomery bus system boycott, led by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.