Berkeley Co. Council in WV agrees to refurbish World War I statue
By Breanna Francis
via The Journal newspaper (Martinsburg, WV) web site
MARTINSBURG — The Berkeley County Council moved Thursday to take steps in refurbishing and relocating a World War I memorial statue that currently resides on the old federal courthouse property in Martinsburg.
Councilperson Elaine Mauck brought the issue of the World War I Doughboy Statue before the council, saying it had come to her attention that the old courthouse will be going up for sale or auction in the coming weeks and in doing so, the statue could potentially go with the property.
“The Smithsonian said we are the owner and administrator of that statue,” Mauck said. “If that is sold, the new owner might chose to move or change that statue; however, Mr. (Steve) Catlett has had people come forward who want to clean the statue up and move it to War Memorial Park.”
Catlett, executive director of Martinsburg-Berkeley County Parks and Recreation, said he was previously approached by the Women’s Auxiliary from the American Legion and requested the statue be moved to War Memorial Park because it would be a “better fit.”
“There was some opposition, but most people did like the idea of seeing it moved,” Catlett said. “To prevent taking the chance that its sold and the new owner take it down or remove it, we should take steps to protect it. This could include sending it to a place in Pittsburgh that can refurbish it. That could be a $10,000 to 15,000 project. And, all of the names of those who served WWI in Berkeley County are listed on plaques on the statue, but according to the historical society, there are 30 names missing. So we would also have to get into correcting the plaques.”
Read the entire article on the Journal web site.
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