Group Title: Historic St. Augustine: Plaza Ponce Statue
Title: [Letter to William R. Adams]
Full Citation
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 Material Information
Title: Letter to William R. Adams
Series Title: Historic St. Augustine: Plaza Ponce Statue
Physical Description: Correspondence
Language: English
Creator: Powell, John T.
Publication Date: 2004
Physical Location:
Box: 8
Divider: Plaza - Ponce Statue
Folder: Plaza Ponce Statue
Subject: Saint Augustine (Fla.)
Plaza de la Constitucion (Saint Augustine, Fla.)
Constitution Plaza (Saint Augustine, Fla.)
Spatial Coverage: North America -- United States of America -- Florida -- Saint Johns -- Saint Augustine
Coordinates: 29.892527 x -81.311253
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00095510
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.

Full Text

john T. Powell
1332 Eisenhower Drive Saint Augustine, Florida 32084 904.823.9372

October 25, 2004

Dr. William R. Adams
Director, Department of Heritage Tourism
City of St. Augustine
Post Office Box 210
St. Augustine, Florida 32085

Dear Dr. Adams:

Pursuant to our discussion related to the maintenance and conservation of the statues of
Ponce de Le6n and Pedro Menendez de Avilds in the historic district of the city of St.
Augustine, I propose that the following steps be taken:

1. Maintenance employees will carefully remove the statues from their bases and
transport them to a secure location where they can be inspected and subjected to
appropriate conservation methodologies. Thick padding should be placed on the
statues where their surfaces come into contact with straps or other devices utilized
to remove, transport, and unload them.
2. Since these statues have been previously surface cleaned with air-propelled crushed
walnut husks and treated with a preservative coating, it should not be necessary to
repeat previously executed pressurized walnut husk surface abrasion.
3. The statues will be carefully inspected for any signs of corrosion or other
degradation. If any deterioration is observed, those areas will be treated locally and
manually to remove any corrosion and other potentially harmful surface anomalies
4. The statues will be both manually and pressure washed with a solution of water and
Orvus Wa paste, a mild detergent designed for such applications. This step will
remove corrosive substances such as acids, salts, and faunal waste matter from
exposed, vulnerable metallic surfaces. This will be followed by a thorough rinsing
with fresh water. Washed surfaces will be spot tested to determine the pH of these
surfaces, and any areas that need to be subjected to additional washing will be
addressed accordingly.
5. Following washing and rinsing, all exposed bare metal surfaces will be treated with
a three percent (3%) solution of Benzotriazole (BTA), a corrosion inhibitor
specifically formulated for use on such cuprous metallic surfaces as copper, brass,
and bronze. When the BTA solution has been fixed and dried on these surfaces, the
statues will be washed again with tap water pressure only.
6. After the application of BTA, the statues will be manually coated with Sculpture
Wax Paste, a formula consisting of Victory White wax, Polywax 2000, Petronuba C
(synthetic Carnuba) wax, and Polywax 500 in a solution of pure mineral spirits. This
long-proven sculpture preservative will provide the statues with protection from the

negative effects of faunal and environmental hazards for a minimum of two (2) years
and an estimated maximum of four (4) years under normal climatic conditions.
7. It should be noted that these estimates of preservative protection may be adversely
impacted by unanticipated and severe climatic events such as tropical storms and
hurricanes or a sudden and unexpected rise in concentrations of airborne pollutants.
8. Following the completion of conservation efforts, the statues will be returned to and
secured upon their respective pedestal bases by municipal personnel. During this
phase of the project, I will be present to observe and assist in the return of the
statues to their permanent locations of display. It is imperative that thick padding be
placed between the statues' surfaces and any straps or other apparatus utilized to
move the statues. If surface abrasion occurs and preservative is inadvertently
removed (or, in a worst case scenario, the metal itself is scratched), any surface areas
thus negatively impacted will be immediately rendered susceptible to deterioration
and corrosion. If I am present during this operation, I will be able to instantly apply
a fresh coating of preservative to any surface where abrasion might occur and, in so
doing, negate the possibility of any short- or long-term damage to impacted metallic
The cost of conserving these statues as herewith specified will be six hundred
dollars ($600.00 USD) per statue, inclusive of expenses incurred for the purchase of
chemicals and preservatives. As a component of this project, I will need the City of St.
Augustine to provide the following support:
* Personnel, equipment and vehicular transport of the statues to a secure (and
preferably roof-covered) inspection and working area prior to the initiation of
applied conservation measures, and the same support to return the statues to their
pedestals after the conclusion of the work to be done;
* The use of a pressure washer with adjustable PSI output and a container to hold the
detergent solution as it is being applied;
* Access to a water spigot and a hose (I will provide a spraying attachment);
* A folding step ladder upon which to stand while working on the statues; and
* Furniture padding or other, similar insulation material to protect the statues'
surfaces from abrasion and other potential damage during their transport to and
from the working area.
If I may provide any additional information, please do not hesitate to contact me.
I look forward to the opportunity of working to preserve these important symbols of St.
Augustine's rich history and heritage.
Thanking you, I am
Sincerely yours,


John T. Powell

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