New York State has approximately 17,000 highway bridges. They are essential for traveling around our state and connecting our communities. About 37% are “functionally obsolete” or “structurally deficient,” according to DOT, a reminder of the need for continuing investment to maintain valuable resources.
Bridges – old and new – are part of community and state history. The story of three historically significant bridges shows various connections to history. Continue reading
Schoharie Crossing State Historic Site in Fort Hunter (Schoharie County) will be hosting the 28th annual Canal Days Celebration on Saturday, July 14 and on Sunday, July 15, 2012 from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm. Admission and parking are free.
Canal Days is dedicated to the historical significance of the Erie Canal and its impact on New York State. However, due to damaged caused by last fall’s Tropical Storm Irene and the unearthing of the remains of Fort Hunter for its 300th anniversary, there will be an archaeology theme and a focus on Schoharie Crossing’s earlier 18th century history as well as the 19th century canal history. Continue reading
On July 4, The Iroquois Indian Museum will host its Early Technology Day, billed as a hands-on learning experience about life in early America.
Visitors can watch and participate in the process of flint knapping (the ancient art of making chipped stone tools), Primitive fire making, Atlatl spear throwing and early archery. There will be displays of projectile points, tools, and local archaeological finds from the Museum’s archaeology department. Have you ever found an artifact? Please bring it with you and the Museum’s experts will try to identify it for you. Continue reading
The Schoharie Crossing Visitor Center is presenting two small temporary exhibits for the 2012 season (May 1- October 31). The exhibits are available for viewing during the regular Visitor Center Hours: Wednesday- Saturday 10AM to 5PM and on Sundays 1PM to 5PM. The Schoharie Crossing Visitor Center is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays and is located at 129 Schoharie Street in Fort Hunter, five miles west of Amsterdam, off Route 5S.
The larger of the two exhibits is entitled “Celebrate 300: Centuries of Fort Hunter History and New Discoveries.” It addresses the 300th anniversary of Fort Hunter and the Queen Anne Chapel, its rich history and recent archaeological discoveries. Fort Hunter, built in 1712, was a British frontier fort; 150 square feet with four corner blockhouses.
Queen Anne’s Chapel served as the center of Christian spiritual life for the settlers of European decent in the area and the surround 600-person Mohawk Village of Tiononderoge.
The other smaller exhibit will show photos of the recent Hurricane Irene flood damage and the recovery effort at Schoharie Crossing State Historic Site.
For more information about Schoharie Crossing State Historic Site, call the Visitor Center at (518) 829-7516. You can also find them on Facebook.
Photo: Normally high and dry, Putmans Store (and the adjacent Enlarged Erie Lock 28) at Schoharie Crossing State Historic Site filled with water on August 29, 2011. Photo by Howard Ohlhous, Courtesy National Park Service.
The Iroquois Indian Museum has opened for its 2012 season with a new exhibit, “Birds and Beasts in Beads: 150 Years of Iroquois Beadwork.” The exhibit features more than 200 beaded objects, largely from the collection of beadwork scholar, retired archeologist and Museum trustee, Dolores Elliott. A Spring Party to Celebrate the Opening from 3-5 p.m. on Saturday, May 5. Continue reading
The Iroquois Indian Museum opens for its 2012 season on May 1 with a new exhibit and special events planned throughout the year. From May 1 until the closing day on November 30, the Museum hosts the exhibition, “Birds and Beasts in Beads: 150 Years of Iroquois Beadwork.” The exhibit features more than 200 beaded objects, largely from the collection of retired archeologist and Museum trustee, Dolores Elliott. Continue reading
Schoharie Crossing State Historic site’s Enders House (adjacent to the Visitor Center at 129 Schoharie Street, Fort Hunter, NY, five miles west of Amsterdam, off Route 5S) will host a series of lectures on the Civil War, Wednesdays in April, 7:00 pm.
On April 4, the lecture series will begin with Montgomery County Historian Kelly Farquar, who will discuss “The Abolitionist Movement in Montgomery County,” a topic of her latest publication. Continue reading
The Schenectady County Historical Society (32 Washington Ave., Schenectady), will hold a celebrate the life and legacy of Hendrick Meese Vrooman, a Dutch settler who came to Schenectady in 1664 and was ultimately killed in the 1690 Massacre. Vrooman was the father of Adam and Jan Vrooman, who came with their father from Holland and many of whose descendants still live in the Schenectady and Schoharie County area.
A letter written by Vrooman in 1664, along with many other letters, were seized by the English from Dutch ships during the 17th-century Anglo–Dutch wars. These seized letters were recently discovered in the archives in Kew, England. In Vrooman’s letter, he comments on the changing rule in the colonies from Dutch to English, and describes his life in Schenectady: “It has been a good summer there. Very fine corn has grown there and the cultivation was good and the land still pleases me. At snechtendeel [Schenectady and the surrounding area] the land is more beautiful than I have ever seen in Holland.”
The Dutch national television station KRO will be filming this event for its program “Brieven Boven Water” (roughly translated as “Surfacing Letters”). The program attempts to make contact with living descendants of people who wrote the seized letters.
Descendants of Hendrick Meese Vrooman are especially encouraged to attend this event; the Grems-Doolittle Library staff and volunteers can help trace lineages back to the Vroomans. Please contact the Librarian for assistance.
The event will be held at the Historical Society on Thursday, February 9, at 2:00 p.m. The cost is $5.00 for the general public; Free for Schenectady County Historical Society members. For more information, please contact Melissa Tacke, Librarian, 518-374-0263, option 3, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Illustration: Map of Schenectady in 1690, courtesy Brown and Wheeler Family History.
The Iroquois Indian Museum in Howes Cave, NY has announced significant staff cutbacks for 2012. “Severe economic downturns coupled with the recent devastating flooding in Schoharie County have forced the Museum to suspend most Museum operations from January 1 to April 30 and to layoff staff during those months,” Museum officials said in a prepared statement issued Wednesday. Continue reading
Schoharie Crossing State Historic Site will host a lecture on “Fort Hunter Flooding Through the Ages: An Eyewitness Look” on Tuesday, September 27, 2011 at 6:30 pm at the Fort Hunter Library, 167 Fort Hunter Road, Town of Florida. The lecture is sponsored by the Friends of Schoharie Crossing and presented by education coordinator Tricia Shaw. The lecture will be followed by refreshments and the September meeting of the Friends of Schoharie Crossing. All are welcome to attend; the meeting and lecture are both open to the public. Continue reading