how to help

The PMIA’s Save the Eagle Committee is working in cooperation with The Historical Society, Inc. serving Tarrytown and Sleepy Hollow.  We are accepting tax deductible online contributions made through the Historical Society by clicking the “Donate” button below. Checks or corporate matches payable to The Historical Society, Inc., One Grove Street Tarrytown, NY 10591 must be designated as “The Eagle Fund Restoration” so that they are specifically identified for this restoration project. The Historical Society is a 501(c)(3) organization and all contributions are tax-deductible. Please contact us if you are in need of further information. All contributions will go towards future maintenance.

The Philipse Manor Eagle following restoration in 2019  photo: Dawn Kriss

The Philipse Manor Eagle following restoration in 2019 photo: Dawn Kriss

Project update

The eagle has been restored to the appearance matching the other original eagles that have returned home to roost at Grand Central Station (see above). Excelsior Art Services LLC restored the eagle, by stripping off a century’s worth of old paint, passivating corrosion on the surface, and applying a protective zinc-rich primer, followed by a two-part epoxy paint system. Treatment will began August 10th, 2019. Landscaping and creation of dedicatory plaques is currently under way. Part of the restoration process involves establishment of a plan for future maintenance, so that the piece does not fall into disrepair in the future. By treating the eagle properly at this stage, we can ensure that it will continue to thrive for another century to come.

One of the original Grand Central Eagles, which has returned to the station.

One of the original Grand Central Eagles, which has returned to the station.

Photos: Dawn Kriss

Photos: Dawn Kriss

history of the eagle

The Grand Central Eagle at Philipse Manor train station represents an important piece of history in our own backyard, and in 2018 it was in dire need of restoration.  Part of the Grand Central Station renovation of 1898, the eagle is one of 11 that graced the historic building’s monumental clock towers for 12 years at 42nd Street and Park Avenue (see below).

Grand Central Depot eagle postcard.jpg

In 1910, as the station began renovations to become the Grand Central Terminal building we are all familiar with today, the huge cast iron eagles were removed and dispersed throughout the region. One of these eagles was obtained by the Philipse Manor Company, landing at our station by 1911. Its impressive 14 foot wingspan continues to grace the train station in Sleepy Hollow and enhance commuters’ rides today. The few remaining eagles represent a bygone era and offer a connection to the grand history of the New York Metropolitan Area.  

Image: Courtesy of the Westchester County Historical Society

Image: Courtesy of the Westchester County Historical Society

Image: Courtesy of the Westchester County Historical Society

Image: Courtesy of the Westchester County Historical Society

prior state

This piece of history was in bad decay and in need of restoration (see images below if it was going to survive for future generations. Despite its exposure to the harsh elements, the eagle had never received professional treatment since its arrival at the Philipse Manor station over a century ago. A conservation assessment determined that there was extensive corrosion, including potential structural damage as well. A committee of local residents from Sleepy Hollow came together to address these issues and save the eagle.  After soliciting multiple bids from qualified restoration providers, they elected to work with Excelsior Art Services, whose principal conservator has nearly two decades of experience as Monuments Chief at Central Park Conservancy. Based on his estimate, our fundraising goal to cover the cost of the project was $60,000.  We exceeded that goal—with contributions totaling over $75,000!

The Philipse Manor eagle prior to restoration in 2019.  Photo: Dawn Kriss

The Philipse Manor eagle prior to restoration in 2019. Photo: Dawn Kriss