Monument Makes Triumphant Return To Lowville

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After nearly 130 years and a botched restoration attempt, the Soldiers and Sailors monument was showing its age.

The monument was taken down more than a year ago for restoration.

On Thursday, it was put back in place and looks as good as ever.

"This is really exciting. I thought it was never going to happen," said Charlotte Beagle, town historian.

Decades ago, concrete had been poured inside the hollow zinc to stabilize it.

That did more harm than good.

"Most of these pieces were very misshapen due to the expansion of the concrete. So we had to restructure and pull everything back into square," said Jim Gwinner, McKay Lodge Construction Laboratory, Ohio. 

Some missing pieces had to be recast in zinc - a slow, painstaking process.

But Thursday's work went fast.

From the base, to the middle sections, to the soldier at the very top, the monument was reassembled in a few hours.

"It's like putting the cherry on top. Just fantastic," said Gwinner.

The final step was putting up the plates that list Lowville's service members in the Civil War.

The monument should be good for another 100 years.

More than 5,000 people were there when the monument was dedicated in 1883.

There will be a rededication on Memorial Day 2013.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014
, Watertown, NY

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