In the 19th century the state of New York built many dams, reservoirs, and even feeder canals in the Black River watershed of the Western Adirondacks as the Erie Canal’s dry periods became more and more costly.
Many of these spots became important recreational attractions, and helped to shape how the Adirondack Park is used today.
Raymond Letterman, Ph.D. is set to discuss the impact of dams and reservoirs that were constructed in the Western Adirondacks to supply water to the Erie Canal at the Erie Canal Museum’s first lunchtime lecture of the year, set for Thursday, February 20 at noon. Letterman will use research findings and images to discuss the history of these structures, and the impact they had and continue to have on a large area of New York State.
Raymond Letterman is retired from Syracuse University, where he taught for 35 years in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. He earned B.A. and B.S. degrees from Lehigh University, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from Northwestern University. He resides in the Syracuse area, and spends summers in the Adirondacks.
The presentation will take place in the second-floor Weighlock Gallery of the Museum, 318 Erie Boulevard East, Syracuse. Admission is $5 for the general public. There is no charge for Museum members.
Parking for the program is available at meters on the street, in pay lots, and in a limited number of free Museum-designated spots across the street under routes 81 and 690.
More information on this and other Erie Canal Museum programs is available online, or by emailing [email protected]
Photo of dam at Old Forge provided by Erie Canal Museum.