Wendell August Forge creates ornament to benefit Notre Dame | TribLIVE.com

Wendell August Forge creates ornament to benefit Notre Dame

Paul Guggenheimer
Special metal ornament created by Wendell August Forge to benefit the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris

The fire that severely damaged Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris last week broke the hearts of millions around the world. But it had an even more profound effect on the staff at Wendell August Forge, the renowned Grove City metalsmiths.

The staff there knows a little something about rising from the ashes.

Nearly 10 years ago, the metalsmiths’ historic forge caught fire and burned to the ground. When the Notre Dame fire broke out, the business not only could relate to what happened, it wanted to help.

Wendell August Forge has created a special metal ornament to honor Notre Dame. The business hopes proceeds from sales of the ornament will raise $1 million to help rebuild the Cathedral. Some of the proceeds will also benefit the three churches burned by arson in Louisiana: St. Mary Baptist Church, Greater Union Baptist Church and Mount Pleasant Baptist Church.

“It struck an emotional chord with me,” Wendell August Forge president Christian Werner said. “I’ve literally recalled when our plant began to burn. Our job as humans is to take our own life experiences and help others.”

Werner said that when it caught fire, the Grove City community helped save Wendell August Forge.

“The night of the fire, a construction company, with the firemen’s approval, backed in their heavy equipment and during the fire, pulled off the back end of the building and opened up the vault with the fire going. The firemen lined up and pulled out all of the dyes. Our heritage was preserved because of the community,” Werner said.

Wendell August Forge was able to rebuild, and it continues to employ local artists and craftsmen.

Wendell August Forge workers are no strangers to this kind of work. Recently they created a unique Stronger Than Hate ornament for the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh.

The Notre Dame Cathedral ornament is available at WendellAugust.com. Each ornament costs $20. Ornaments ship beginning June 1.

Paul Guggenheimer is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Paul at 724-226-7706 or [email protected].

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.