BALTIMORE (WJZ) -- She's Baltimore's iconic symbol. For nearly two centuries, the Lady Baltimore sat atop the Battle Monument.
But, as Gigi Barnett explains, preserving the statue means giving her a new home.
She stands eight feet tall, is nearly two tons and more than 190 years old. Perched atop the Battle Monument in downtown Baltimore since 1822, Lady Baltimore watched Charm City change.
But in October, crews replaced her with a stronger lookalike. Time was taking a toll.
This week, the city's grand dame has a permanent home -- at the Maryland Historical Society. Head Curator Alexandra Deutsch says it's the first time visitors will get a chance to meet her face-to-face.
"Most people, they're driving around it or they're walking and they don't necessarily even look up. Now, they're meeting Lady Baltimore almost eye-to-eye," she said.
It takes a lot of time and money to look this good. In the 1920s, Lady Baltimore lost both of her arms in a heavy rain storm. And since the 1990s, she's had at least four costly restorations.
"After they had worked on it for some time to figure out how to leave her on the monument, they decided it really wasn't a good idea," said Burt Kummerow, President, Maryland Historical Society.
She was the first statue erected in Baltimore, memorializing patriots killed in the War of 1812. Her familiar image is on several logos citywide. Now, she'll light up her new home.
"When she's all lit up, she's just really, really like a beacon, just shining," Kummerow said.
It's a beauty that only comes with age.
The Maryland Historical Society is hosting a celebration Thursday night in honor of the Lady Baltimore's new digs. If you'd like to attend, click here.
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