Monument Thanking Tuscarora Heroes

March 22, 2013 Updated Mar 22, 2013 at 6:45 PM EDT

By Ed Reilly

March 22, 2013 Updated Mar 22, 2013 at 6:45 PM EDT

YOUNGSTOWN N.Y. (WKBW) During the War of 1812, British forces supported by allies, including the Mohawk Indians, attacked Lewiston, NY in retaliation for American troop actions in Canada.

The attack turned into a rampaging massacre with even children, as young as 7-years old, being scalped in front of their mothers.

Before the British-backed forces could wipe out the entire population, members of the Tuscarora Indians gathered on the escarpment and blew horns.

"Giving the impression that there was a large unseen American force ready to swoop down and counter-attack. The British stopped - thinking they were walking into a trap or an ambush," said Lee Simonson, president of the Historical Association of Lewiston.

The pause allowed dozens of Lewiston settlers to escape.

"In two hundred years, the best we can find out, they {the Tuscarora's) have never been thanked or appreciated for what they did," added Bruce Sutherland, Vice President of the Historical Association of Lewiston.

The Historical Association has now secured $400,000 to help build a new monument to thank the Tuscarora's.

It is being created by renown sculptor Susan Geissler from Youngstown.

"The emotion that has to come out of these pieces is very important to me," commented Geissler.

The sculptor is now putting the final touches on 7-foot tall clay figures that will be sent to Colorado in the next few weeks for the bronze casting process.

Unveiling of the new monument, which is called "Tuscarora Heroes," will take place on the 200th anniversary of the Lewiston attack: December 19, 1813.