USA Travel & Tourism Guides: Statue of Lafayette in Washington D.C is a seven acre park across from the White House is named in honor of Marquis De Lafayette, the French General who befriended George Washington and fought in the Revolutionary War. The statue of Lafayette is located in the southeast corner of Lafayette Park. Lafayette Square was originally part of the White House grounds, but became separated from the Executive Mansion in 1804 when President Thomas Jefferson built Pennsylvania Avenue through the park. The park’s name was changed to Lafayette Square in 1824 to honor the Marquis De Lafayette.
In the park are five statues. The central statue, by Clark Mills, is identical to one in New Orleans. It was erected in 1853. The other statues, one at each corner of the square, were added later. Each one is of an action pose of a foreign participant in the Revolutionary War. From France, looking oh-so-detached, is the General Marquis Gilbert de Lafayette; also from France is Major General Comte Jean de Rochambeau, pointing the way south; from Poland is Thaddeus Koscuiszko; and from Prussia is Major General Baron Frederich Wilhelm von Steuben. Over the years, the park has been used as a graveyard, slave market, zoo and a race track. It took its present form with landscaping performed in the 1930s. The square was designating a National Historic Landmark in 1970.