Alexander I was the Emperor of Russia from 1801 until 1825. The legacy of his reign was the repulsion of Napoleon’s Grande Armée invasion during the Patriotic War of 1812. To celebrate the victory, Alexander Column was installed in the center of Place Square in 1834. The core of the 156 foot monument is a solid pillar of red granite. Surrounding the pedestal are four bronze panels sculpted by Giovanni Battista Scotti. They are detailed reliefs of angels flanking old Russian military shields, helmets and armor. Below them are sculptures of the imperial double-headed eagles. Ironically, the war monument and the panels were designed by a French architect, Auguste de Montferrand.