Artifacts from downtown monument moved due to flooded basement

A leak that sent water into the basement of a historic monument in downtown Indianapolis has prompted curators to move a collection of artifacts documenting Indiana's role in the Civil War.

The Soldiers and Sailors Monument's artifacts, including a cannon, were moved a few blocks north of Monument Circle to the Indiana War Memorial, The Indianapolis Star reported.

J. Stewart Goodwin, executive director of the Indiana War Memorials Commission, which oversees the 284-foot-tall monument, said the basement area that houses the Col. Eli Lilly Civil War Museum will flood when it rains a couple of inches.

Goodwin said structural engineers are examining the monument this week to determine the issue. He gave no timeline for when solutions would be proposed or when repair work would begin.

The 115-year-old limestone tower and its grounds, which led to the construction of the Indiana World War Memorial and its plaza, were named to the National Historic Landmarks list last year. It's the largest of more than 200 Civil War memorials in the country and the only one that combines large-scale sculptures in bronze and stone.

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