Churchill statue temporarily removed for conservation

Associated Press

JEFFERSON CITY — A statue of Winston Churchill has been temporarily removed from a Missouri museum honoring the famed British wartime prime minister so it can be cleaned and protected from construction.

The Jefferson City News-Tribune reports that the statue was taken down Wednesday from the National Churchill Museum on the campus Westminster College in Fulton, the town where Churchill delivered his famous "Iron Curtain" speech in 1946. The phrase "Iron Curtain" described the separation of Eastern Europe that was under Soviet Union rule.

Museum director and chief curator Timothy Riley said the statue's base was unstable, and the statue was at risk of being damaged by construction equipment that is working on drainage. Riley said the statue will undergo cleaning and conservation before it is reinstalled on a newly rebuilt base by fall.

The museum is closed to the public during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.