LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) -
A piece of history is now missing from the Hunt Morgan house in downtown Lexington. It weighed more than 400 pounds and it was approximately 6 to 7 feet tall and 3 to 4 feet wide. Staff never imagined someone could steal it.
"It took four very strong men straining to lift it into place. We actually tried to move it once and couldn't," says Sheila Ferrell, the Executive Director of the Blue Grass Trust for Historic Preservation.
Unfortunately, some thieves managed to pick up the iron prison gate and remove it from the Hunt-Morgan House over the weekend.
"It was from the early 1800s from the Ohio State Penitentiary that housed John Hunt-Morgan when he got captured during the Civil War. And subsequently escaped from that prison," says Ferrell.
Ferrell says the Civil War memorabilia was set to go on exhibit at the historic site soon. She's hopeful an increased reward will bring the piece back to the Hunt-Morgan house.
"The Bluegrass Trust had offered $500 and thanks to a wonderful business person and community activist, Debra Hensley has offered an additional $500. So we now have a $1,000 reward. That's about 1,000 good reasons to help the Bluegrass Trust find this piece," Ferrell says.
Ferrell says this is the third time within a year that the non-profit has been the target of burglars.
"We work very hard to be very active in the Bluegrass region and to be a wonderful support system for advocacy to have something stolen is a heart breaker," adds Ferrell.
While staff say that they have plenty of security inside the Hunt- Morgan house but now they are looking into the possibility of increasing security on the outside of the property as well.