The Paducah Parks Services Department has invited to Paducah the original artist who created the sculpture, Wacinton, to determine a plan to stabilize the structure. Wacinton is located on Park Avenue in Noble Park next to the tennis courts and the Robert Cherry Civic Center. Peter “Wolf” Toth hand-chiseled the sculpture from a local 56,000 pound red oak. On November 3, 2015, a large portion of the headdress fell to the ground. The headdress is in storage.
Toth will begin on Tuesday, July 26 assessing Wacinton’s internal rot. He plans to clean it out, stabilize it, and seal it. Paducah Power System has volunteered to set poles around the structure that may be used in the stabilization process. Toth will make a determination if the headdress can be reattached.
Since the 1970s, Toth has traveled around the country and Canada creating enormous sculptures that honor Native Americans. The collection is called the Trail of the Whispering Giants.
Toth has had to address the deterioration of sculptures in other states. Toth says, “In some states, the statues have had extensive insect and fungus decay caused by water seeping into the top and base of the statue. I would like to tell you that even in the worst case scenario, there is hope. I have restored a number of my ailing statues, adding decades, and potentially centuries to their life-span.”
Toth is asking for volunteer assistance from people with sculpting and/or woodworking skills. If you would like to volunteer, please first contact the Parks Department at 270-444-8508.
Wacinton, which means to have understanding, honors the Chickasaw Indians who lived and hunted in this area until the Jackson Purchase in 1818. The sculpture was dedicated May 26, 1985.
The Parks Department thanks the Paducah Convention & Visitors Bureau for assisting with Toth’s accommodations while he is here in Paducah.
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