After a seven-month, $57,000 restoration, the bronze boy and girl who have graced the Gratz Park fountain since 1933 returned to their granite perches Wednesday.
Amanda Matthews and Brad Connell of Prometheus Foundry in Lexington did a major conservation of the statues, which have been damaged and improperly repaired many times.
“Everything went great with the repair,” Matthews said. “They should be good for another 100 years.”
A crane lifted the granite base and statues back into place, and Connell reattached a restored plaque stating that the fountain was a gift to the children of Lexington from author James Lane Allen.
The city and the Gratz Park Neighborhood Association financed conservation of the statues and reconstruction of the fountain, which had many structural and plumbing problems. The fountain, which cost $154,800 to rebuild, is expected to reopen in early July.
Amanda Matthews of Prometheus Foundary, right, and Rick Deaton of American Industrial Contractors discussed how to reattach the girl’s statue in the James Lane Allen fountain at Gratz Park. Photos by Tom Eblen
Brad Connell, left, Amanda Matthews and Keith Spears of Prometheus Foundary replaced the refurbished plaque to author James Lane Allen.
Amanda Matthews, left, and Brad Connell, right, reattach the refurbished statue of the boy on the fountain.
Staff members of Prometheus Foundry and American Industrial Contractors reattach the refurbished boy’s statue on the James Lane Allen fountain in Gratz Park. Left to right are Mike Franz, Brad Connell, Amanda Matthews and Keith Spears.
Mike Franz and Amanda Matthews helped reposition the girl’s statue on the Gratz Park fountain.
Amanda Matthews of Prometheus Foundry inspected the girl’s statue after it was reattached.
Anthony Williams, project manager with the City’s Parks and Recreation Department, and Amanda Matthews of Prometheus Foundry inspected the reinstalled statues of the boy and girl on the James Lane Allen fountain in Gratz Park.
Tom Eblen is a columnist for the Lexington Herald-Leader who writes about life, people and issues in Lexington and Kentucky. A Lexington native, Eblen was the Herald-Leader's managing editor from 1998 to 2008. He previously was a reporter and editor for the Atlanta Journal- Constitution and The Associated Press. Some columns contain his opinions and observations.