Niagara Gazette

War of 1812

March 10, 2013

Lewiston's Tuscarora Heroes Monument work continuing as collector's piece is revealed

Lewiston's Tuscarora Heroes Monument work continuing as collector's piece is revealed


Niagara Gazette —

Creating the monument people will actually experience in December is a lengthy process. She's more than half-way through her work at the studio, which will finish in late March or early April when her giant clay figures are shipped to a foundry she uses in Loveland, Colo.

There, plastic molding will be made of her creations and the originals destroyed. The plastic, which she said reminds her of hollowed out chocolate Easter bunnies, is layered with wax, about one-eighth-inch thick before being dipped repeatedly in a ceramic slurry. Once the shell is built up, the wax is melted and replaced with molten bronze.

Once the statue assembled, the final product will be installed at its permanent home at the corner of Portage Road and Center Street in Academy Park, likely in September. It'll be covered until it's unveiled at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 19, during a day-long program planned to recognize the events of 200 years before.

For those who can't wait, though, the Historical Association of Lewiston just minted a collector's coin which they're selling to help finance the monument creation.

Coins are two inches in diameter and feature a 3D printed version of the monument's action on one side. The reverse depicts a Tuscarora emblem with the turtle, eagle and northern white pine tree. Around the perimeter of this side is a quote from Tuscarora Chief Elias Johnson dated at 1881, which says: "The Tuscaroras were ever ready to sacrifice their blood upon the American altar."

"We worked closely with the Tuscaroras on every aspect of the coin, including the important symbolism and quote from Chief Johnson in 1881," Simonson, the coin and monument's designer, said. "Johnson wrote the native history on the Tuscarora Heroes action and spoke personally to men who actually were there and participated."

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