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Engineers surveying damage at 1911 Indian statue

Published: Friday, Oct. 11, 2013 5:30 a.m. CDT

OREGON – Engineers are inspecting a massive, concrete statue of a Native American overlooking the Rock River in northern Illinois to determine its condition.

The 48-foot-tall Eternal Indian statue was built on a bluff near the Ogle County town of Oregon 102 years ago to honor all American Indians.

A 1911 newspaper article says sculptor Lorado Taft indicated the statue was inspired by Black Hawk, but was not a likeness of the famous Sauk Indian leader.

Structural engineers are using high-tech scanners to investigate damage to the statue, which has cracks and large pieces of dislodged concrete.

Assessment and repairs are expected to cost more than $625,000.

The site is in Lowden State Park about 20 miles southwest of Rockford, and draws about 400,000 visitors a year.

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