Interpretive panel will give history of Champlain

CHAMPLAIN - The town of Champlain will soon have a new way to pay tribute to the French explorer from whom the town received its name.

The Town of Champlain Quadricentennial Committee has received notification it will be awarded a $1,700 federal appropriation to establish an interpretive panel at the Samuel de Champlain monument at St. Mary's Church on Church Street.

The monument, explained committee chairman Christopher , was the first in the United States dedicated to Samuel de Champlain, erected in 1907.

"This monument of Samuel de Champlain is the center piece of our community that welcomes several visitors to the monument every year," said Trombley.

St. Mary's Church, said Trombley, has seen an increase in the number of people visiting the monument with this year's celebration of the Hudson-Fulton-Champlain Quadricentennial. The "Quad,"s to which is often referred, celebrates, in part, the 400th anniversary of Samuel de Champlain's exploration of the region.

The town Quad committee figured it only fitting those flocking to the monument be able to learn more about the history of Samuel de Champlain while standing at the base of the statue of the famed explorer, said Trombley. The committee applied for a grant to fund the installation of an interpretive panel and was most pleased when learning their application was successful, he said.

"This interpretive panel will be very important in educating the public on the historical significance of this monument," said Trombley.

"The monument to Champlain on the grounds of St. Mary's Church is very special," added Celine R. Paquette, vice chairperson of the Hudson-Fulton-Champlain Quadricentennial Commission and member of the town Quadricentennial committee. "The Champlain Quad committee is proud to leave a legacy of an interpretive panel."

The panel will measure approximately 24 inches by 36 inches, and contain information about Samuel de Champlain in both English and French. The panel is expected to be created and installed by this fall, said Trombley.

The Samuel de Champlain monument, a white bronze monument, was cast by the Monumental Bronze Company of Bridgeport, Conn. The pedestal is surmounted by a statue of Samuel de Champlain, six feet, six inches in height, representing him in the moment of his arrival at the lake which bears his name today, Lake Champlain.

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