Creating a Sense of Community in Northeast Tennessee & Southwest Virginia

The Erwin Elephant Revival is a community initiative created to heal and reflect on the memory of Mary the Elephant, whose life tragically ended in the Clinchfield Railroad Yard on September 13, 1916. This art project seeks to raise funds and awareness for various charities as well as benefit The Elephant Sanctuary in Hohenwald, Tennessee and The Elephant Family Charity. The 8 fiberglass statues were painted by regional volunteer artists and have an array of vibrant themes.

“We want Erwin to be known as the town that loves elephants and one of the biggest supporters of the Elephant Sanctuary. We cannot change what happened 100 years ago, but we do have a choice in how we react to this tragedy, and we choose to create something positive.”—Jamie Rice, R.I.S.E Erwin President.

Many of the statues have been sponsored by local businesses and citizens, and will be displayed in downtown Erwin from May-October 20, 2018. A live public auction will take place on Oct 20 at 12:00 pm in the Gathering Place park in downtown. 75% of the auction proceeds will benefit the charity of the sponsors choice, and the remaining 25% will be donated to the elephant charities. Last year’s elephant statues sold between $1500-$3000 each at auction, with total proceeds totaling over $12,000. For those unable to attend the live action, a proxy bidder form is available at

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