The Port will work with the Lelooska Foundation on best restoration procedures for the historic pieces which are valued at over $600,000

 

The Port of Kalama board of commissioners voted this evening to accept the donation of the totem poles that have long been a presence on the Port waterfront. The totems, which have been professionally appraised at $600,000, will remain on the Port of Kalama property while best restoration techniques are identified.

As The Daily News reported in 2017, ‘the totem poles are owned by the descents of William Wineberg, who commissioned a local Native American artist, Chief Don Lelooska, to carve the poles in the 1960s. For several years, the poles sat in the grass in front of Wineberg’s Columbia Inn in downtown Kalama before they were hauled to the port and raised in 1974.’

The poles were originally leased by the Kalama Chamber but the Port assumed the lease in the 1990s for $1 per year in an agreement thereafter.

The Port will work to restore the iconic local artifacts including consulting with Lelooska Foundation and other experts on refurbishing the existing poles and determining the best way to preserve and display the 140′ pole. After analysis, the Port will commence restoration of all four poles, which would include taking the remaining three down one at a time for drying, removing rot, structural fill of voids/cracks, carving structural fill, weatherizing, re-painting and erecting.

The Port wishes to thank descendants of the Wineberg family who are collectively the generous donors of the iconic artifacts:

• Ellen Leigh

• Janet Hatfield

• Mathew Nollar

• Amanda Nollar

• Susan E Hatfield

• Julie Reese

• John C. Jensen, Jr.

• Eric Scott Jensen

“This is just an incredible gift to the community-and ensures that these beloved local icons and symbols of our place here will remain intact for all to enjoy,” says Alan Basso, president, board of commissioners, Port of Kalama. “Thank you to the family for entrusting us with the ongoing care of these beautiful totems-we take that role seriously.”