Lincoln Tomb vandalized. Thanks, bean counters!

A disconcerting news item out of Illinois:

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. –  A statue on top of Abraham Lincoln’s tomb in Illinois is missing its sword for the second time in over a hundred years after thieves apparently made off with part of the copper sculpture, the State Journal-Register reported.

An employee at the Oak Ridge Cemetery in Springfield, Ill., noticed last week that the copper sword held by a replica of a Civil War artillery officer was missing.

According to the report, the sword was broken off at the handle, with no damage done to the rest of the artillery officer statue or the other statues in the group of four — representing the Civil War cavalry, infantry and navy — atop the tomb.

And how, you may ask, could such a thing happen?

He said the copper sword was likely stolen while the cemetery was closed, because “anyone who would have gone up would have been noticed by a worker” during the day.

The cemetery previously stationed an overnight security guard at the tomb, but the position was eliminated due to budget cuts.

For the wages of bureaucratic penny-pinching is the endangerment of historic resources.


Filed under Abraham Lincoln, Historic Preservation

2 responses to “Lincoln Tomb vandalized. Thanks, bean counters!

  1. I wonder how the thieves propose to cash that in for scrap value.

    Houston has a bunch of dealers in scrap, including one that blankets the local airwaves with gimmicky advertising. (“We’ll pay you in $2 bills!”) But they also work closely with law enforcement, even to the point of having an on-duty HPD officer sitting there at the cash-in counter, to run checks on anyone whose “scrap” seems questionable. Like pawn shops, scrap dealers have a long-term interest in staying on the good side of the po-po.

    • Michael Lynch

      I’d say if they plan to cash it in, they stand a likely chance of getting busted, but I wonder if it might’ve been kids out for a lark. Anyway, it’s apparently not the first time it’s happened at the site, even if it is a pretty lousy thing to do.


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