OREGON – It’s one down and one to go for the Black Hawk Statue.
One of the two state agencies whose approval is needed has given the go-ahead on a plan to restore the statue at Lowden State Park near Oregon.
“The IHPA [Illinois Historic Preservation Agency] did finally approve the plan, and it’s now on to the IDNR,” Frank Rausa of Sterling said Tuesday.
Rausa is a member of the Friends of the Black Hawk Statue, the organization spear-heading restoration efforts and fundraising for the project.
He said he expects to get approval from the IDNR in the next few days.
Once that happens, the scaffolding can go up, and the work on the landmark can begin.
Once the scaffolding is in place, Rausa said, the team will begin doing “mock-ups” or testing various mixtures of concrete and other materials to see which one will work the best to restore the areas of the statue damaged by time and weather.
Four to six different mixtures will be applied to the statue and allowed to cure for approximately a month.
The crew will determine which is the best match for 103-year-old statue.
A re-dedication ceremony will be held once the work is done, probably next July.
About $725,000 has been raised toward the repairs. Rausa said an additional $75,000 to $100,000 will likely be needed to complete the project.
Donations can be mailed to Illinois Conservation Foundation, One Natural Resources Way, Springfield IL 62702. Checks should be made out to the Illinois Conservation Foundation and marked for the Black Hawk Statue.