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Restoration crew tests cement mixtures on 104-year-old Black Hawk statue at Lowden State Park


OREGON, Illinois — A restoration team is testing different mixtures on cracks running through a 104-year-old statue of a Native American in northern Illinois, hoping to find one that will repair the landmark along the Rock River.

Time and weather have damaged the 50-foot-tall statue of Black Hawk that sits atop a 125-foot bluff at Lowden State Park, Sauk Valley Media (http://bit.ly/1JTX8em ) reported.

Workers last week mixed four varieties of cement and lime, and then injected them into cracks. The team will check back in about two weeks to see whether any of the concoctions, each of which have different chemical makeups and came from different companies, will be effective in repairing the statue.

"We have to let them set and then look at the surface and see how they performed," Woods said of the mixtures.

The team also removed calcium deposits and loose material for the statue's surface.

Restoration work is expected to cost about $825,000, most of which already has been raised by Friends of the Black Hawk Statue through donations, grants, and fundraisers.

The Black Hawk statue was designed in 1910 by Chicago sculptor Lorado Taft and dedicated as a tribute to Native Americans the following year. The statue has been on the National Register of Historic Places since 2009 and named in April to the state's list of Most Endangered Historic Places.

Information from: Dixon Telegraph, http://www.saukvalley.com

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