The campaign to fund the restoration of the historic L.S. Ayres clock in downtown Indianapolis has hit its goal nearly two weeks ahead of schedule. Indiana Landmarks says it has raised $60,000, which will be used to get the clock working again and repair and clean the bronze casing.
The organization originally set the fundraising goal at $20,000 to fix the clock and set up a maintenance fund. However, Indiana Landmarks says when it found out the clock was originally lit from within and the case needed repair and cleaning, the goal was increased.
Indiana Landmarks says Camby-based Smith’s Bell and Clock Co. will repair the clock to the displayed time is accurate. The funds will also cover the cost of four new clock faces, the re-lighting of the faces and the cleaning and repair work. Indianapolis Deputy Mayor of Community Development says the city will expedite the permits needed to repair the clock ahead of the arrival of the bronze cherub, which sits atop the clock during the holiday season.
"We’ll wait to clean and repair the bronze," said Indiana Landmarks President Marsh Davis. "If you notice a detail or two missing from the case, it means it was loose or detached and has been removed for safekeeping until the conservation begins next spring."
The organization says the maintenance fund established through the effort will cover annual clock cleaning and repair, as well as the cleaning and conservation of the bronze case and the bronze cherub every four years. The eight-foot-tall, 10,000-pound clock was designed in 1936 and added to the Ayres department store, where it has remained even after the store closed in 1992. The building now houses the Carson Pirie Scott department store.