McKay Lodge Conservation Laboratory was selected by the Ohio Historical Society to conduct a thorough condition survey of the Victory Monument, the main element of a historical landmark known as Fort Recovery State Memorial located in Fort Recovery, Ohio and maintained by the Ohio Historical Society. The survey included the massive granite obelisk and its base.
Built in 1912, the obelisk stands at 101 feet 4 inches tall and is dedicated to the American soldiers killed under the command of Arthur St. Clair and Anthony Wayne during the Northwest Indian War (1785–1795).
Numerous cracks in granite blocks, failed joints and several significant losses could be seen from the ground level. The observations made from a 120 ft aerial lift allowed Stone Conservator Marcin Pikus to analyze the condition of the mortar joints on higher levels and investigate the mechanism of deterioration of the structure. The deterioration is related mainly to significant water infiltration and subsequent frost-jacking contributing to extensive cracking of the granite blocks.
The hollow concrete shaft of the obelisk was also inspected using high quality digital video scopes. The inspection of the interior and the drainage system revealed a serious blockage in the drain located directly under the obelisk. The survey resulted in the recommendations for the future remedial treatment, which should entail cleaning, re-pointing and stone repairs. Removing blockages from the drain system and its repair should be also a part of this project.
The restoration of the obelisk of the Fort Recovery Victory Monument is scheduled to begin in July 2016.