STATEN ISLAND, NY — NYC Parks City Landmarks has given 25 patriotic city landmarks a “bath” so they can look their best in time for Veterans Day on Friday.
Among the city’s landmarks that are embellished is the 10-foot-tall, 700-pound statue known as ‘Lady Victory’ – erected in honor of World War I veterans – which stands in the center of Pleasant Plains Avenue.
Launched in 1997, the City’s Landmarks Preservation Program is a public-private partnership that provides low-cost, professional expertise in the maintenance of NYC Parks’ extensive collections of landmarks and permanent outdoor art.
Since its inception, the program has conserved 80 sculptures and provided large-scale, high-quality annual care to over 500 additional sculptures and monuments.
ABOUT LADY’S VICTORY
The soldiers from the South Shore who gave their lives during the First World War will forever be etched in the community of Pleasant Plains.
First erected in 1923, Lady Victory was beaten, broken and eventually robbed. But in November 1996, the bronze statue of Lady Victory made a comeback.
Originally designed by George T. Brewster of Tottenville, the statue has become a symbol of victory for South Shore residents who fought in World War I.
The names of 493 World War I veterans are engraved on plaques – salvaged from the original monument – which will be installed on the statue’s 51/2-foot base. The monument has been dubbed the Pleasant Plains War Memorial by the Parks Department.
Lady Victory wears a breastplate attached above her flowing skirt. Standing on a pedestal with an eagle with outstretched wings, she thrusts a sword wrapped in a palm leaf above her head. The original statue, funded by South Shore residents for $8,500, was damaged in multiple motor vehicle collisions over the years. It was eventually stolen from a city warehouse in the 1970s while awaiting repairs.
The new statue was funded by the city council for about $270,000, with the bulk of the money allocated in 1991 by Councilman Fred Cerullo, a former South Shore councilor who is now the city’s finance commissioner.
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