An ancient column from Carthage (modern-day Tunisia), toppled and broken during a fierce windstorm on Oct. 30, 2017, has been repaired and reinstalled at the Suffolk County Vanderbilt Museum.
The company that repaired the two-ton column reinstalled it recently on a new, reinforced-concrete base.
The stately, thousand-year-old column, one of six near the entrance to the Vanderbilt Estate, was damaged when the storm uprooted a massive tree next to it.
The falling tree knocked down the column, which hit the curving stone wall that overlooks the Vanderbilt Boathouse and Northport Bay. The impact broke off the carved top, or capital. Experts from the A. Ottavino Corp. used a crane to lift the column onto a large flat-bed truck and took it to their stoneworks in Ozone Park, Queens for repair.
Ottavino, a third-generation family business founded in 1913, has worked on significant projects that include the Statue of Liberty, the Korean War Veterans Memorial, the main branch of the New York Public Library, Columbia University Medical Center and Brooklyn Borough Hall.
Each column is 14 feet high, 59 inches in circumference and weighs 4,000 pounds. The Cipollino marble was quarried on the Greek island of Euboea. Sometime after William K. Vanderbilt II (1878-1944) began building Eagle’s Nest, his Centerport estate and the home of the Vanderbilt Museum, in 1912, he relocated the columns from his first Long Island home, Deepdale in Lake Success.
The Suffolk County Vanderbilt Museum is located at 180 Little Neck Road in Centerport. Winter hours for the museum, mansion and grounds are Tuesdays from noon to 4 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays from 11:15 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Monday, Jan. 20 from 11:15 a.m. to 4 p.m. For further information, call 631-854-5579 or visit www.vanderbiltmuseum.org.