MOULTON — Editors Note: Jennifer Heartley is a Moulton-Udell graduate who is currently studying journalism at Drake University. She submitted the following for publication to the Daily Iowegian. It will be ran as a multi-part series on the People Page. This is Part 3.
An Investigative Story
The serene, white bricks in the wall opened the space like a sky full of clouds. The room smelled like fresh linens. The ceiling was low as were those of most buildings in town, yet high enough that the people didn’t feel closed in.
A Moulton-Udell student sat at a computer working on a research assignment for school with her grandmother peering over her shoulder. The librarian sat behind the desk checking things at her computer. A sculpted statue of the 16th president of the United States blended in with the walls behind it.
While sitting at the library researching the archives, I found old archives about the library itself. The documents were almost like a flashback from a local that lived during that time. The Moulton Archives had many pictures of the groundbreaking and memorable things in the library. I took pictures of the images in the archives, then walked around the library and took pictures of the same things in present day. One of these items was a very interesting statue of Abraham Lincoln that has been in the library ever since I can remember. I never knew why it was there, though. I was one of those kids that was always curious and constantly asked those impossible-to-answer questions. I remember asking my mother, because when you were five, mothers knew everything, when I was younger: why it was there, where did it come from, did someone make it or did it come from a building (factory/company). I don’t remember what the exact answer was that I got, but I remember her giving me an answer that she thought might be possible (she wasn’t for sure). When I saw a picture of it in the archives, there was a little information about a 17-year-old girl that sculpted it. When I took a current picture of it in the library, I noticed a little plaque sitting on the base. I read it and found out a little more about it, but not much. None-the-less I kicked myself for never noticing that plaque before. Nellie V. Walker, a 17-year-old girl of Moulton, without ever seeing any kind of statues, having any instruction or assistance, or having a model, she cut and engraved the stone. She finished in 28 days, working from Aug. 3 to Aug. 27, 1802.
Another photograph in the book showed a plaque with the inscription: