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WDEL's Delaware Stories
with Mellany Armstrong

Restoring William Penn's luster

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William Penn has lost his luster in New Castle. He needs a good cleaning.

"The original patina is very different than what we're looking at right now. It was a beautiful golden brown," Travers said.

The statue by Delaware's treasured sculptor Charles Parks was unveiled in 1984 on The Green in New Castle, and now it's showing signs of wear.

"As most outdoor sculpture, they're forgotten. You just don't notice the condition that they're in," he said.

Travers and others want to shine him up again. Conservators say it will cost between $2700 and $3600.

"The Travers family will pay 80 percent if the city can come up with the other 20 percent," he said.

Travers wwould like to have the statue restored in time for Separation Day, June 8, or at least by October 27, which is William Penn Day.

"Right across the street is the national park office that's going to open in 2 or 3 years. There'll be visitors coming through here all the time," he said.

Penn is important in the history of New Castle.

"William Penn landed here, not in Philadelphia, and took over his Pennsylvania, his woods."

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