Tag Archives: Watervliet

New Shaker Book Highlights Watervliet Settlement


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their name is wicks book coverThere is a new book about the Shaker community and the original (1776) Shaker settlement in the United States in Watervliet, NY.

‘Their Name is Wicks’: One Family’s Journey Through Shaker History by Ann C. Sayers shines a light on the peak years of Shaker history, from the 1820s to the 1850s.

This is the first comprehensive study of a whole (and very large) family who moved to the Watervliet Shaker community. Continue reading

A Short Biography of Engineer Benjamin Prescott


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Pipes of the Albany Water Works excavated by Wolfert Roost CC circa late 1980s002The Wolfert’s Roost Country Club in Albany maintains a small dam, pond, and pump house to provide water for their golf course. In the 1980s workers excavating the pond, which is fed by the Maezlandtkill, discovered several sections of ancient wooden and very early cast iron pipe along with iron bands. The pipe and other artifacts were placed in the woods near the club’s tennis courts and forgotten.

Benjamin Prescott, engineer of Albany’s first municipal water system and the man responsible for those pipes, is all but equally forgotten, despite an illustrious career in engineering.  Prescott served as an Engineer in the American Revolution, Superintendent of the Springfield Armory, and was the designer of several notable projects, including one of this nation’s first inclined planes (on the Connecticut River). He also conducted a 1790s survey of Niagara Falls, consulted on the Erie Canal, designed the Troy Sloop Lock (the Federal Dam) and more. Continue reading