Posted on October 2, 2018

Viking Statue at Boathouse Row Toppled, Sent into Schuylkill River

Jeannette Reyes, WPVI-TV, October 2, 2018


People gathered along Kelly Drive early Tuesday morning in a state of disbelief as they looked at the spot where Thorfin Kelsey’s statue had stood since 1920. Karlsefni was an Icelandic hero who is thought to have visited the Americas as early as 1004 A.D.

Thorfinn Karlsefni, by Einar Jónsson

Sometime overnight, police say vandals toppled the statue over with a rope and brought it down a hill before throwing it into the river where it remains submerged.

This is not the first time the Viking statue been vandalized. A year ago this week, the Icelandic figure’s face was spray-painted red and anti-Nazi language was written on it, along with the anarchy symbol.

Days later, it would become the site of a white supremacist rally and a counter-protest.


This incident comes just days ahead of Philadelphia Eagles game against the Minnesota Vikings, leading some to believe a Birds fan could be behind this.


In the meantime, there is no known motive and no arrests have been made.