Creating the Lincoln in Peekskill Statue
To commemorate the event of President-elect Abraham Lincoln stopping in Peekskill on February 19, 1861 on his way to his inauguration, members of the Lincoln Society in Peekskill felt it appropriate to honor Lincoln with a statue. The newly restored Lincoln Depot building and site was the obvious location for such a statue. Lincoln Society member and artist Paul Martin III suggested the artist, Richard Maslowski, be commissioned to complete the task. Masloski was already well known for such outstanding works as the Westchester County Police Memorial in White Plains, the Orange County Veterans Memorial in Newburgh, NY, the Town of Wappinger War Memorial, the Rip Van Winkle Monument in Tarrytown and the Gold Star Mothers Memorial in Yonkers. He also had a significant body of work of Lincoln as well as other historical figures. Masloski was the unanimous choice to produce the Lincoln Statue.
As Lincoln Society President I whole-heartedly supported the idea and decided to find a way to make this dream a reality. Masloski created a 3’ high bronze miniature of the statue that would eventually be 7’ full size. As the excitement and anticipation grew we set out to find financial support for the project. At the time, Martin Ginsburg of Ginsburg Development Corporation was working closely with the City of Peekskill to develop a comprehensive waterfront redevelopment plan. Mr. Ginsburg saw the statue and Depot as a significant component to the waterfront concept and enthusiastically committed to funding the statue project in its entirety. His generosity and foresight enabled the Lincoln Statue project to progress from concept stage to completion in record time. Within 18 months the Lincoln Statue was a reality and was dedicated on October 27, 2007.
The photos in the slideshow above show the various stages of the project as the artist completed them on location at the Polich Tallix Fine Art Foundry in Rock Tavern (near Newburgh), NY. After being created in miniature, the full size version of the statue was created in clay. The statue was recreated in wax to enable the casting in bronze. The Lost Wax Process of casting was used to create the raw bronze statue in various pieces and then welded together. Once assembled, the statue was put through an extensive polishing process and finally the patina and color was added. The result is truly amazing and the Lincoln in Peekskill statue will be a focal point and destination place for generations to come.