The Eternal Indian

Also known as: Black Hawk Statue
1414 N River Rd, Oregon, Illinois

Concrete monolith, about 50' tall, overlooking the Rock River from a high bluff near Oregon, Illinois


Overview Looking Northeast

Photo taken by J.R. Manning in April 2014




A concrete, monolith statue created by Loredo Taft. The statue stands 125 feet above the Rock River. The monolith weighs in at 536,770 pounds and is said to be the second largest concrete monolithic statue in the world. It wears a long blanket and stares across the river with folded arms. Hollow, there is an access door but the statue is not open to the public. The outer surface is composed of cement and pink granite chips.

At the dedication in 1911, Taft said the statue was inspired by the Sac leader Black Hawk, although it is not a likeness of the chief.

The site was the location of Taft's Eagle's Nest Art Colony that he founded in 1898. Students would often stop at this location and contemplate the river, which led to the placement of the statue here. Several pieces, created at the Eagle's Nest Art Colony, were donated to the Oregon Public Library. Today the site is the Lorado Taft Field Campus of Northern Illinois University.

The statue was added to the NRHP in November, 2009.

Update Log 

  • July 25, 2019: New photo from sean flynn
  • April 25, 2014: New photo from Steve Conro
  • April 24, 2014: Added by J.R. Manning