The Morley Dog - Johnstown, PA
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Lat34North
N 40° 19.569 W 078° 55.201
17T E 676705 N 4466033
Quick Description: The Morley Dog is located in a small park on the corner of Market and Main Streets in downtown Johnstown, PA. This statue survived the Johnstown Flood of 1889.
Location: Pennsylvania, United States
Date Posted: 11/16/2012 12:49:50 PM
Waymark Code: WMFQ31
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member Outspoken1
Views: 4

Long Description:
The statue was on the lawn of an iron industry executive and was washed away during the in the 1889 Johnstown Flood. The statue was recovered from a huge pile of debris, and later donated to the city. The Morley Dog is now located in a small park on the corner of Market and Main Streets in downtown Johnstown, PA. The statue is of a large dog and is made of either cast iron or zinc. The status is painted. The dog stands with head and tail erect and alert and is painted a reddish brown and has a white underbelly. He wears a thick black collar with studs and a large buckle.

The following is from an article appearing on the Auction Central News web site.
"The centuries-old statue known as Morley's Dog was a popular feature in a Johnstown park for decades, until it was removed for restoration more than seven years ago, the Johnstown Tribune-Democrat reported.

The newly refurbished statue was on display over the weekend at AmeriServ Flood City Music Festival. Officials are working to find the pooch a permanent home indoors.

The statue was swept away from the lawn of an iron industry executive in the Great Flood of 1889, recovered from a huge pile of debris, and later donated to the city.

The Johnstown Area Heritage Society (JAHA) says the statue was made in the late 1800s by New York City's J.W. Fiske Iron Works. Cambria Iron executive James Morley bought the statue and kept it on his lawn at Main and Walnut, until the May 31, 1889, flood devastated the town. It was recovered after the flood and returned to the family. The statue was eventually donated to the city in the 1940s.

Many came to believe the statue was a likeness of a real dog; others that it was specifically modeled on the likeness of a dog that saved a child during the flood. The historical society said neither is true, but the misconception probably was fueled by a reference to the flood and the statue in the 1977 Paul Newman movie Slap Shot.

In actuality, the famous statue was ordered out of a catalog.

'It was manufactured out of zinc, which was a metal frequently used for statuary in the 1800s,” JAHA president Richard Burkett told Auction Central News. “It was a lawn ornament and not made to last forever. Like the zinc Civil War statues that are now deteriorating and requiring restoration, the dog had not weathered well.'

'At some point it had been vandalized, and to keep it from falling apart, someone had filled it with concrete. Concrete expands, and it caused giant cracks all over the statue. This made restoration very difficult. It had to be taken apart so the concrete could be scraped out, which was a laborious process,' Burkett said."

Written by Associated Press and ACNI Staff
Monday, 08 August 2011 12:58

Read more: Famous dog statue from 1889 Johnstown flood returns
Breed: Labrador Retriever (possibly)

Date Built: Ca. 1875

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Lat34North visited The Morley Dog - Johnstown, PA 9/26/2012 Lat34North visited it