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Bygones of Monroe:

Monroe Man Carves "Custer's Last Stand" in Wood

Taking a block of sugar pine three inches thick and four by three feet in size, Glen Richards of Monroe has reproduced in exact detail a famous picture of Custer's Last Stand. The work is done in relief for the background which extends to a depth of two and a half inches and as an engraving in the foreground where blades of grass are faithfully reproduced. All the carving was done with a small pocket knife.

Mr. Richards, who lives at 919 Patterson drive and is employed at the Consolidated Paper Company, plans to exhibit his carving at the New York World Fair. He also wants Henry Ford to see it.

All of the wood carving work of Mr. Richards has been done since coming to Monroe 12 years ago from Wabash, Indiana. A fellow worker, Eugene Quackenbush, is given credit by Mr. Richards for the encouragement which led him to continue carving after his first meager attempts. He has had no schooling in art and does all the work with a small pocket knife. A small chisel was used for the deep relief work of the Custer picture, however.

Mr. Richards has wanted to do the Custer carving for several years but could not secure a copy of picture. One was finally procured for him by Al Gessner and Mr. Richards started laying out the picture in pencil July 1, 1938. He began actual carving July 28 but the total work hours spent since that time are incalculable. He finished last week. The interior dimensions of the picture is 36 ½ by 24 inches and it includes more than 90 figures large enough to be distinguished. Swords and spears, not more than four or five of them, were glued on but the guns are part of the original block of wood.

In the past Mr. Richards has carved two pictures of Christ's "Last Supper" which he has tinted. One of his best works is an oval portrait of an old duck hunter.

Monroe Evening News, June 8, 1939, p6 c3


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