Delayed work on historic Hamilton monument improving lighting, windows

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

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Stunning aerial view of downtown Hamilton

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Repairs this week to the Soldiers Sailors and Pioneers Monument in downtown Hamilton have caused some street closures, and officials said the work will improve its lighting and windows.

Monument Avenue from High to Court Street will be closed to through traffic from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. through Friday. The road closure is necessary to provide repairs for the stained glass windows on the Soldiers Sailors and Pioneers Monument.

A new storefront aluminum and glass system will be installed over the windows, which have lost their seals over time due to the weather. A 17-foot aluminum frame is being built, and 16 sections of glass will be inserted to the frame.

Desmond Maaytah, Butler County’s community development manager, said the new system “provides better protection from wind loads and moisture to insure Butler County residents can enjoy the Monument for years to come.”

The stained glass windows, which face the Great Miami River and High Street, pay tribute to the contribution of women during wartime. The two windows depict Army nurses, who are seen taking care of a Civil War soldiers, and Our Loyal Mothers and Sisters with women and children seen rolling bandages.

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The nearly 113 year-old monument reopened in May 2018 following a three-year restoration project that repaired its stone walls and added a copper dome. Maaytah said work on the windows was delayed due to a lack of funding.

The funding for the project came through partnership of the Butler County Board of Commissioners Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and the Hamilton Community Foundation.

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The two groups provided funds to the earlier construction as well, when the Hamilton Community Foundation challenged Butler County commissioners to match a $250,000 grant. According to John Guidugli, the foundation’s president, funding for both projects came from the Michael J. Colligan fund.

“The Michael J. Colligan Fund at the Hamilton Community Foundation supports a number of important projects in our community including providing funds for housing historical memorabilia relating to veterans,” Guidugli said. “The work on the Monument supports this goal of the Colligan Fund.

The Colligan fund contributed $20,500 to the repair of the windows and the installation of LED lighting, which was finished before the road closure. The CDBG also provided $20,500 to the project, which came from two different sources. Both of these funds were in addition to the earlier $250,000 grant.

The construction is expected to be completed by Friday in preparation for the city’s Fourth of July celebration. The monument is open Thursday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., but will be open for tours on July 4 as long as the construction is completed.

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