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Stolen antique weather vane recovered 40 years later and returned to Vermont

Local News

The 1910 weathervane sat atop White River Junction Station in Hartford before it was stolen on November 3, 1983.

An antique weather vane that once sat atop a train station in Vermont.

An antique weather vane that once sat atop a Vermont train station before being stolen in 1983 is on display Tuesday, May 14, 2024, in Barre, Vermont. Jennifer Hauck/The Valley News via AP

BARRE, Vt. (AP) — An antique copper weather vane that was stolen from a Vermont train station 40 years ago was recovered and returned to the state last week, the Vermont Agency of Transportation said.

“We are thrilled to see this valuable historical artifact and beautiful work of art return to its home here in Vermont,” Judith Ehrlich, the agency’s historic preservation manager, said in a statement Monday.

The 1910 weathervane is that of a steam locomotive and coal tender and was manufactured by WA Snow Iron Works Inc. It stood atop the White River Junction station in Hartford before being stolen on November 3, 1983, the transportation agency announced Tuesday. Nearly 40 years later, it was given to New York auction house Sotheby’s, officials said. The Arts Loss Register, which has a database of lost, stolen and looted art, antiques and collectibles, confirmed that it was indeed the stolen weathervane. The auction house therefore withdrew it from sale, the shipping agency said.

The state currently owns the White River Junction station. Arts Loss Register worked with the state to return the weather vane last week, the transportation agency said. Sotheby’s paid $2,300 to ship it to Vermont, the state said.

Ehrlich said the transportation agency is working with the state conservator to choose an ideal location for the weather vane “so it can be enjoyed again.”

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