CHICAGO (CBS) — A plaster sculpture of one of President Abraham Lincoln’s hands has been returned to a museum in Kankakee, more than a year after it was stolen.
“We are just over-the-moon excited,” said Kankakee County Museum executive director Connie Licon.
Kankakee sculptor George Grey Barnard had formed the 10-pound plaster hand from a picture of Lincoln before crafting a statue.
The hand was stolen from the museum in December 2015, and Licon said it was feared it would never be seen again.
On Sunday – Lincoln’s birthday – an usher at St. Rose Catholic Church found a bag that had been dropped off anonymously.
“It looked like a bowling bag, and he thought it was food pantry items. He opened the bag, and he saw that it was the Lincoln hand,” Licon said.
There also was a note inside the bag.
“The note was on notebook paper – with gray duct tape stuck to it – that said ‘Return to the Small Museum,’ because we’re located in Small Memorial Park,” Licon said.
As for whomever took it, Licon said she is leaving that to police and the FBI.
Licon said the museum has increased security. It used to have only motion detectors at night, but has since added a 24-hour camera system.