Tuscarora Heroes Monument
Dedicated on Thursday, December 19, 2013
on the 200th Anniversary of the brave Tuscarora action
Lewiston, New York
October 25, 2013: Site Work Completed. Rocco DelGrosso and Bruce Sutherland Updates
Everything is done and ready for mounting the sculptures on November 4, 2013 -- several weeks before the scheduled unveiling on December 19, 2013. In this video, Rocco DelGrosso, the site contractor, and volunteer project manager, Bruce Sutherland, discuss the progress and very impressive results that were achieved over the past 37 days of construction. The project is on-time, on-budget, and everyone has been thrilled with the finished project. The platform, which is designed as a turtle's back, exceeded everyone's expectations. (The Iroquois believe the Earth was created on a turtle's back.) Six northern white pine trees have been planted at the site to represent the six nations of the Iroquois Confederacy.
September 25, 2013: Sculptress Susan Geissler Provides Project Update
Artist Susan Geissler was at the Monument site today and gave us this video report on the progress being made. Back pillars have been poured, much of the landscaping has been planted and the new flag poles went up today. The sculpture itself is still in Colorado undergoing the final casting process and will be delivered to Lewiston sometime in late October to be mounted at the site.
September 18, 2013: Construction Begins
Contractor Rocco DelGrosso and his construction crews arrived early today and began clear the old brush and landscaping. The six northern white pine trees will be planted tomorrow, exactly 3 months to the day for the unveiling. The six trees will represent the six nations of the Iroquois Confederacy. So far, everything is on time and on budget.
We expect the bronze sculptures to arrive sometime next month. We will mount them immediately or store them somewhere for mounting in November.
** YOU CAN VIEW THE PROGRESS BY VIEWING LIVE WEBCAMS. Click here:
July 11, 2013: Turtle Design Selected
A committee of volunteers has chosen the turtle design for the platform for the Tuscarora Heroes Monument. The turtle is a sacred symbol of the Tuscaroras is part of their creation legend. The idea was first brought up by volunteer Bruce Sutherland who was leading a discussion and said in jest, "Looks like you're getting a turtle, Pattersons" as he was taking ideas from the group and marking a large pad on an easel. The next day, everyone agreed that we should pursue the turtle idea. Contractor Rocco Delgrosso provided this design and construction is expected to start by the end of August.
April 7, 2013: Article by Carolyn Thompson from the Associated Press hits the wire. Story appears across the United States and Canada, including such publications as the Wall Street Journal and Albany Times Union.
It's Lewiston's new "good luck" keepsake -- a special Lewiston coin
that will become a sought-after collectible for generations. That's why
you'll want to get as many of these coins as you can to give as gifts to
your family members, loved ones, and former Lewiston residents who will treasure the artistry and the message this coin conveys.
ALL proceeds from the sale of the coin will go to the Tuscarora Heroes
Monument project which will culminate in a spectacular unveiling on the
evening of December 19, 2013 -- 200 years to the day when a small band of Tuscarora men bravely halted the British attack on Lewiston and enabled dozens of Lewiston citizens to escape.
How to Order: Coins are $10 each, and can be obtained by calling the Lewiston, NY Museum at 716-754-4214. (add $4 for postage.)
February 11, 2013: Tuscarora Heroes Commemorative Coin Minted
A tomahawk will be placed on the back of one of the natives.
A tomahawk will be placed on the back of one of the natives.
January 5, 2013: Enlargements at Studio Ready for Details
The foam filled/clay covered enlargements have arrived at Susan Geissler's studio in Youngstown, New York. They come in pieces and Susan is now engaged in the painstaking task of including every fine detail and preparing for the time when they are again disassembled and shipped to the foundry in Colorado for the several-step bronzing process.
This is an important part of the whole sculpting process. Every small and exact detail Susan includes in the clay enlargements will be reproduced in bronze. She will be consulting several times with experts in native dress, hairstyles and musketry to insure that the final elements are perfect.
September 10, 2012: Article about the Tuscarora Monument appears in the Montreal Gazette here.
August 27, 2012: Lewiston Town Board unanimously endorses the siting of the Monument on the southwest corner of Portage and Center Street.
August 16, 2012: First installment check received from the Town of Lewiston Greenway funds.
July 14, 2012: Contract signed with artist Susan Geissler, HAL and Town of Lewiston, at the annual Tuscarora Picnic at the Nation's picnic field. A collection of photos from photographer Bill Carpenter can be seen here.
Aug. 9, 2011: Host Communities Committee approves Greenway funds.
July 19, 2011: Niagara River Greenway Commission endorses Monument project.
March 14, 2011: Town of Lewiston endorses project.
Nov. 19, 2010: Keybank becomes first sponsor.
April 22, 2010: Press conference unveiling of the model of the proposed Tuscarora Heroes Monument and release of the Tuscarora Heroes book. You can see a press report of the conference here. You can see pictures from the press conference here.
Dec. 19, 2009: Lewiston Supervisor Steve Reiter, arranges meeting with Tuscarora Council member, Neil Patterson, Sr., and Historical Association volunteers Lee Simonson and Tim Henderson, to discuss Monument concept and create cooperative framework to proceed with project. (The meeting took place on the 196th anniversary of the Tuscarora Hero actions in 1813, exactly 4 years, to the day, before the unveiling of the Monument on December 19, 2013.)
On July 14, 2012, the contract with artist Susan Geissler (left) was signed at the Tuscarora Picnic stage. Lee Simonson, project director (2nd from left) and Supervisor Steve Reiter, Town of Lewiston Supervisor (2nd from right) participated. Historical Association President Bruce Sutherland (right) also signed.
The ceremony was witnessed by the Tuscarora chiefs and clan mothers.
Daughters of 1812 Sponsor Plaque
On May 29, 2012, the Historical Association of Lewiston conducted its annual membership meeting. Jan Johnpier (right), President of the New York State Daughters of 1812, was in attendance and announced the organization's support to sponsor the 6 foot wide bronze plaque that will accompany the Monument. She was presented a vinyl facsimile by Tuscarora Council member Neil Patterson, Sr. (middle). Association President Bruce Sutherland (left) presided over the meeting.
The plaque will include the names of all of the Tuscarora men who participated in the action, along with names of the Lewiston victims who were killed in the British attack.
May 8, 2012 Concept
Here is a photo of the Monument in the proposed setting on Center Street. (Hibbard's Custard is directly behind the Monument.)
The Monument will be placed on a platform that will include pavers or stone, along with a sidewalk. On the left you see a mock up of an interpretive plaque and two flagpoles that will carry the American 1812 flag and the Tuscarora flag. Behind the monument will be stone pillars and the place where the bronze plaque will go.