The Ticonderoga Historical Society has been awarded a $10,000 grant from the Northern New York Library Network for the digitization of original records pertaining to Roger’s Rangers from the historical society’s Loescher Collection.
Specifically, the grant will allow rosters of enlisted men who served with Rogers to be available online through the New York Heritage website. While Robert Rogers has been the subject of numerous books and articles, information on individual rank-and- file soldiers has been scarce. » Continue Reading.
After a 15-year hiatus, The Bulletin of the Fort Ticonderoga Museum returns in print with an issue focused on “1777: The American Revolution on the Northern Frontier.” The Bulletin, published for over seventy years, helped the Fort Ticonderoga Museum achieve an international reputation for original scholarship and research.
Featured guest contributor for this issue is Eric Schnitzer, Historian and Park Ranger at Saratoga National Historical Park. In his article “Cook’s and Latimer’s Connecticut Militia Battalions in the Northern Campaign of 1777,” Schnitzer explores the composition and contributions of these units to the ultimate success of the Continental efforts to stop British General John Burgoyne’s invasion from Canada. » Continue Reading.
Travelling on NYS Rt 28 just north of Wevertown, you may have taken little notice of the old abandoned farm on your right. If you did, you’ll probably gave it little thought; it is, after all, just a few run down barns and pasture overgrown with weeds and “poverty grass”. Yet this farm is a microcosm of Adirondack History.
Andrus Wever and his family were the first to open up the forest and to settle and farm on this site. Andrus was a Revolutionary War veteran who had served with the 6th Albany County Militia. At that time, Albany County included most all of Northern New York, the present state of Vermont and theoretically extended west all the way to the Pacific Ocean. The 6th was called up when General Burgoyne’s Army invaded from the north and Andrus likely saw combat at the battle of Saratoga in 1777. The 6th Albany County Militia was also part of the pursuit party that chased Sir John Johnson and his Royal New Yorkers back north after Johnson’s raid of Johnstown in 1780. It’s unclear if Andrus was a member of that pursuing party, but it’s intriguing to speculate he first came through the wilderness of what is today Wevertown during that pursuit. Andrus’ father, William, was also a patriot and apparently served in the American Revolution on Long Island. He was captured and died of small pox on a British prison ship in Boston Harbor. » Continue Reading.
The little stone school house on Dudley Road is more than just the oldest schoolhouse in Essex County, it was the first schoolhouse in Westport. Built in 1816 from local limestone, the small stone school first opened to serve the first settlers of Westport, the Barber and Frisbie families. On October 10, the town of Westport will be celebrating the bicentennial of this small school.
According to nearby Camp Dudley, the Stone School House served local children for 100 years, closing its doors in 1916. During its tenure the school could serve up to 24 children and provide students with a library of 84 books. Now the school is an historic display, capturing a time before centralized school systems. » Continue Reading.
Recently in this column appeared the story of Selden Clobridge, a teenage Civil War soldier from Turin, New York, whose battlefield career ended at the grand old age of 18 after multiple wounds that included limb loss. About 85 miles northeast of Turin, an even younger soldier took it to the extreme, receiving his discharge from the army before he became a teenager.
William R. Bastin was born in December in the town of Lawrence, near the St. Lawrence County line, east of Potsdam. A headstone gives his birth year as 1852, which corresponds with his age in three of six census records and his obituary. Other census records disagree by a year, suggesting he was born in 1851—but by any measure, he was far too young to become a soldier.
When William enlisted at Malone on September 14, 1864, he gave his age as 16. But by most indications, including interviews as an adult, he was actually three months shy of twelve years old when he joined the army, purportedly as a drummer boy. Things didn’t work out as expected, though, and he instead became a child soldier. » Continue Reading.
October 11th marks the 240th Anniversary of the Battle of Valcour, one of the first naval battles of the American Revolution, fought between the shores of Valcour Island and New York State.
A commemoration of this event will be held at the Clinton Community College, 2nd Floor Lobby/Veranda of the George Moore Building from 4:30 to 5:30 pm on October 11th. The event is free and the public is encouraged to attend. » Continue Reading.
Wednesday, October 5th marks Dr. E. L. Trudeau’s 168th birthday. A pioneer in the fields of medicine and science, Trudeau shaped the character of Saranac Lake as a world-famous health resort for people suffering from tuberculosis. Historic Saranac Lake (HSL) will celebrate the occasion of his birth by offering two special tours.
A tour the grounds of the former Trudeau Sanatorium will meet at 10:30 am at the Park Avenue gates of the American Management Association. A guided tour of the Saranac Laboratory Museum will also be offered that afternoon, provided by Executive Director Amy Catania. The museum tour starts at 2 pm. Both tours are $5/person. Members of HSL and children are free of charge. » Continue Reading.
The small town of Turin in Lewis County has some interesting historical connections to the Civil War. Among them is native son Selden Clobridge, who was born in January 1846 in the hamlet of Houseville. In official records, his enlistment age is 21, which means he would have joined the army in 1867, two years after the war ended. It’s no surprise that he’s among the thousands who lied about their age in order to join the fight.
When he joined the army in summer 1862, Selden was actually just 16 years old. For perspective, consider yourself at age 16. What were you doing? Perhaps chasing boyfriends or girlfriends, goofing around a lot, and maybe beginning to consider your future after leaving high school in a couple of years.
At age 18, a time typically characterized by major life decisions — getting a job, going to college, joining the military — Selden was already a hardened veteran whose active army career had been ended by enemy fire. After two years of long marches, terrible living conditions, and dozens of battles where friends and compatriots were killed by his side, he was a survivor of war’s horrors—not completely intact, but a survivor nonetheless. » Continue Reading.
This year’s Warrensburg Historical Society Graveyard Walks will be conducted at the Warrensburg Cemetery, 174 Hudson Street, on Friday, October 21, and Friday, October 28, at 7 pm.
Characters expected to surface at the cemetery this year brothers Ray and Eldon Haskell, who both lost their lives in World War Two. Vera Brown, suspected of being a spy; John Taylor, a Navy submariner; and Emily Martin, a nurse.
Both walks will be followed by free homemade desserts at the Miles Thomas House (Senior Center) on Main Street, which will be transformed into a U.S.O. for the evening. » Continue Reading.
Nicholas and Nicola Bell, with their baby Poppy, were the first people to complete a new quest that links Crown Point, NY with Chimney Point, VT. The British family followed clues on a Quest Map and answered seven riddles to obtain the quest’s treasure: a commemorative coin.
The Bridge Quest was developed through a partnership among the Champlain Valley National Heritage Partnership (CVNHP), Chimney Point State Historic Site, Crown Point State Historic Site, Lake Champlain Visitors Center, and the Crown Point State Campground. » Continue Reading.
The Chapman Museum in Glens Falls will host William R. Griffith, author of the new book, The Battle of Lake George: England’s First Triumph in the French and Indian War (History Press, 2016) on Sunday, September 25th at 2 pm.
In the early morning of September 8, 1755, a force of French Regulars, Canadians and Indians crouched unseen in a ravine south of Lake George. Under the command of French general Jean-Armand, Baron de Dieskau, the men ambushed the approaching British forces, sparking a bloody conflict for control of the lake and its access to New York’s interior. British commander William Johnson rallied his men through the barrage of enemy fire to send the French retreating north to Ticonderoga. The stage was set for one of the most contested regions throughout the rest of the conflict. » Continue Reading.
New Hampshire’s famous Presidential Range in the White Mountains has many peaks named after presidents and other famous statesmen. While we don’t have a range here in the Adirondacks dedicated to our nation’s leaders, we do have several mountains that bear presidential surnames. They weren’t necessarily named after White House occupants, but the name is the key if you like trivia games, which I do. Giving it some thought, how many can you name?
The High Peaks by far get the most attention in the Adirondacks, but because I began favoring less-traveled areas many years ago as popular trails became more crowded, I climbed some lesser-known mountains that happened to have presidential names. In the trivia realm, that helped me list a half dozen before I turned to digging up some additional examples. Without revealing their names just yet, here’s a bit of info about each. » Continue Reading.
Great Camp Sagamore will hold a two-day presentation on cemetery and gravestone restoration on Tuesday, September 27th, and Wednesday, September 28th.
For many people, cemeteries are sacred sites, locations that not only provide spiritual comfort for both the living and the deceased, but also help communities maintain connections with their collective cultural history. Over time, however, many small cemeteries fall into disrepair and decay, as loved ones move on and communities grow. For its part, New York State is home to thousands of neglected or abandoned cemeteries, many of which are technically the responsibility of their surrounding communities. » Continue Reading.
The town of Newcomb will highlight the connection between Teddy Roosevelt and the National Park Service with this year’s TR Weekend, September 16-18, 2016. Events for adults and children are planned all weekend.
On Friday night, a celebration of the centennial anniversary of the National Parks Service will be held at Newcomb Central School, where a dozen parks will be highlighted from various regions of the U.S. Kiosks will represent the parks, and students will act as Junior Park Rangers, guiding visitors through them. Later, Teddy Roosevelt (played by Joe Wiegand) and John Muir (played by Dr. Dick Shore) will discuss the impact their friendship had on the development of the National Park Service. » Continue Reading.
Adirondack Architectural Heritage (AARCH), the region’s historic preservation organization, will be presenting its Annual Preservation Awards on Monday, October 3 to eight projects that exemplify the preservation work being done in communities throughout the Adirondacks. These awards are meant to honor the best examples of sensitive restoration, rehabilitation, and demonstrated long-term stewardship by individuals, organizations, local governments and businesses. » Continue Reading.
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