By Andrea Remke
Enquirer staff writer
COVINGTON - History isn't always in the books.
The Mary Ann Mongan library will illustrate that Saturday when a 6 1/2-foot statue of a young Abraham Lincoln is placed on library grounds.
Abe's arrival at the southeast corner of Fifth Street and Scott Boulevard christens the library as the first recipient of the city's Art of Discovery Award.
Ella Brown-Frye, Covington's director of economic development, said city officials and local organizations including the Baker-Hunt Foundation, the Behringer-Crawford Museum and the Carnegie Arts Center conceived the idea to award significant art in the community.
"The city wanted to create a venue to celebrate artists and the art culture," Brown-Frye said.
The bronze statue of the 16th president was sculpted by Northern Kentucky artist Matt Langford, who lives in a 170-year-old log cabin in Union.
Langford said he liked the challenge of depicting a young Abraham Lincoln in simple clothing.
"It takes a little imagination," he said.
Langford said the library is a perfect site for the piece.
"It's a terrific metaphor for the library, Lincoln's self-development. This man - a Kentucky native - of humble origin, through his work ethic and determination, rises to greatness," he said.
Robin Klaene, community relations director for the Kenton County Public Library, said it's an honor to have the statue on the grounds.
"This emphasizes our local history collection," she said.
The statue base will have an enlarged phrase taken from Lincoln's handwriting, Langford said. The engraved plaque will read, "I shall prepare myself. Someday my chance will come."
Langford said the sculpture is designed to inspire.
"I want people to think, 'What can I do? What can I be?' " he said. "I want children to see themselves in this piece."
The unveiling will be 11 a.m. Saturday. A reception will follow in the library's second-floor meeting room.
A Lincoln historian/impersonator will give a program at noon.
Tonight's big debate: Bush v. Kerry
Nursing shortage in area abates
Region getting serious about child obesity
Tot Lot member sentenced
Group puts blacks in cockpit
Miami U. rape suspect 'is no longer a student'
IN THE TRISTATE
Bond Hill jail idea may finally die
Forum's funding premise disputed
Leaders old, new on hand as new space frees labs
As levy vote nears, Lakota ponders cutbacks in busing
Local news briefs
Loveland ponders windfall
Wellness Center, Y program for moms
Neighbors news briefs
As Ohio's population remains static, number of elderly rise
Court: Ohio can't require speech permit
State hasn't decided how to spend $431M for poor
Warren Co. court worker demoted
Public safety briefs
UC dean to take new post to boost revenue
Reading schools face cuts
2 area fire departments to present safety fairs
Three Rivers group schedules levy talks
Police seek to question man in thefts
Citizen wants Web advocacy halted
W. Chester future studied
Bronson: City spends on monitors, not safety
Good Things Happening
Barry N. Wakeman was Zoo denizen
Lincoln to stand tall at library
Group: Let judges speak out
A home of their own
Attack ads define race
Southgate residents weigh eliminating their school
UK plan's focus: Safety for women
N. Ky. news briefs