Having grown up directly across the Rock River from The Eternal Indian Statue (known by many as Blackhawk, or Chief Blackhawk), I've been following the restoration efforts going on in Oregon for quite awhile now. A news report published yesterday indicates that we're going to have to keep waiting.

Our friend Kristin Cwynar at MyStateline.com posted a piece yesterday that indicates the restoration project is currently on hold due to a dispute between the project manager, Dr. Andrzedj Dajnowski, and an engineer for the project.

"It's between an engineer that wants to replace everything and a conservator, which is me, who wants to save everything that is possible to save," says Andrzej Dajnowski, the Dr. of Conservation at the Conservation of Scultpure and Objects Studio near Chicago. Dajnowski believes removing the 105 year old cement, of which the statue is comprised, would take away from the historical value of the statue.

But the state sided with the project engineer, so Dajnowski removed himself from the project. He says, "I would never walk away from a project like this, I've never done something like this in my entire life and I feel horrible about this, but I just couldn't do what is completely wrong ethically."

According to a report published in the Ogle County News, that leaves everything up in the air:

“The contract with the project’s general contractor has not been renewed, so repairs have halted temporarily while the Illinois Department of Natural Resources seeks a new general contractor. No timeline has been established yet for when work might be restarted,” IDNR Communications Director Chris Young said in an email sent May 4. The IDNR has jurisdiction over the statue because it’s situated in Lowden State Park near Oregon.

It's a good thing he's the Eternal Indian, not the impatient one.

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