The Front Blog

Conversations from the Four Rivers Region

Datebook: September 7 – suspected Mona Lisa thief arrested 100 years ago

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The Mona Lisa painting now hangs in the Musée du Louvre in Paris. The painting’s increasing fame was further emphasized when it was stolen on August 21, 1911. The next day, painter Louis Béroud discovered the four iron pegs where the painting should have been and initially thought it had been taken for promotional photographs. French poet Guillaume Apollinaire, who had once called for the Louvre to be “burnt down,” came under suspicion. On September 7, 1911, he was arrested and put in jail. Apollinaire tried to implicate his friend Pablo Picasso, who was also brought in for questioning, but both were later exonerated.

The story gets more interesting, as the painting was thought to have been lost forever. It took two years to find the lost painting. Louvre employee Vincenzo Peruggia had stolen it and hid in a broom closet until after hours. He kept it in his apartment for two years before selling it to the Uffizi Gallery in Florence. He was hailed as a patriot for returning the Italian painting and only served six months in jail.

It’s Wednesday, September 7

The 24th Annual Trail of Tears Pow Wow is Saturday and Sunday at the Trail of Tears Commemorative Park, US Highway 41 South, Hopkinsville. Gates open at 10 a.m. both days. Grand entries are 11:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. Saturday and Noon, Sunday. Admission is $6 for adults. Experience Native American music, dancing, food, and crafts.

A non-profit agency providing foster care in Western Kentucky, Bellewood, hosts an informational meeting about becoming a foster parent next Tuesday. It’s at 6:30 p.m. at the Graves County Public Library, 601 North 17th Street in Mayfield.

The Dr. James W. Hammack, Jr. Scholarship Banquet is Saturday, September 17, at 7 p.m. in the MSU Curris Center Ballroom. UNC-Charlotte faculty member Dr. Karen L. Cox speaks on “Dixie’s Daughters: The United Daughters of the Confederacy and the Preservation of Confederate Culture.” Call Kay Hays at 270-809-2234 for required reservations.

Marketplace airs at 5:30 p.m. tomorrow, followed by President Obama addressing the Joint Session of Congress at 6. See details at wkms.org.

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