Almanack Contributor Anthony F. Hall

Anthony F. Hall

Anthony F. Hall is the editor and publisher of the Lake George Mirror.

Anthony grew up in Warrensburg and after an education that included studying with beat poet Gregory Corso on an island in the Aegean, crewing a schooner in Hawaii, traveling through Greece and Turkey studying Byzantine art and archeology, and a stint at Lehman Brothers, he returned to the Adirondacks and took a job with legendary state senator Ron Stafford.

In 1998, Anthony and his wife Lisa acquired the Lake George Mirror, once part of a chain of weekly newspapers owned by his father Rob Hall.

Established in the 1880s, the Mirror is America’s oldest resort newspaper.



Sunday, April 12, 2015

Lake George Effort To Reduce Permit Violations

Lake George DockCustomizing a dock on Lake George? There may be nothing in the Lake George Park Commission’s regulations explicitly allowing or prohibiting some modification or embellishment, but according Molly Gallagher, the Lake George Park Commission’s permit administrator, there are precedents.

“Some of these precedents for what is allowed or for what requires a permit were in my head, or in the head of the Commission’s first executive director, Mike White,” Gallagher told the Commissioners at a recent monthly meeting. “We also have Records of Decisions and individual resolutions. Now I’m putting some of these on paper in the form of a memorandum that will aid you in your deliberations and help guide administrators as well as dock builders and homeowners.” » Continue Reading.


Sunday, April 5, 2015

Expanded Lake George Trail System Eyed

x13In 2009, towns on Lake George were awarded a $69,000 grant from the state’s Adirondack Park Community Smart Growth Grant Program to create a “Trails Master Plan” for the west shore.

“Creating the plan was a great opportunity to pull together all the information we have about hiking and mountain biking trails as well as bicycle routes,” said Tracey Clothier of the LA Group, who crafted the plan. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, March 31, 2015

The Last Campaign of Inez Milholland

Inez MilhollandHistorians warn us against falling into a trap called the retrospective fallacy, that is, assuming that whatever happened – the Confederacy was defeated, we survived the Great Depression without a revolution – was bound to happen.

When we succumb to that kind of thinking, we overlook the achievements and sacrifices of those who brought us safely to harbor. Among those is Adirondack legend and women’s rights advocate Inez Milholland. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Fund: Lake George Salt Levels Can Be Cut 40%

Snowplow (Lake George Mirror file photo)The salt in Lake George would decrease by 40% over a ten-year period if highway departments reduce its use now, by half, says Dr. Jeff Short, a science advisor to The Fund for Lake George.

“Any actions we take will be apparent almost immediately,” said Short.  “If we cap loading now and then dial down, the results will be clear. So the incentive for taking action is huge.”

The Fund for Lake George is crafting a strategy to achieve that goal, said Eric Siy, The Fund’s executive director. » Continue Reading.


Sunday, March 22, 2015

Up On Tick Ridge: Bolton’s Fox Farm

Bolton Fox Farm 1The property would become famous for the fields of sculptures installed by David Smith. It was called the Terminal Iron Works, in honor of the Brooklyn shop where Smith had made his first welded sculptures.  But when it was purchased by Smith and his first wife, Dorothy Dehner, in 1929, “it was called the Old Fox Farm because a previous owner had raised foxes there for the fur trade,” Dehner recalled in 1973.

That previous owner was Abner Smith, one of the sons of Frederick Reynolds Smith, the boat builder who founded F.R. Smith and Sons. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Bolton Quick Launch’s Proposed Height Raises Concerns

Bolton Landing Marina from Bolton Bay with Architect rendering of marina with 20 foot height expansionA proposal by the owner of the Bolton Landing Marina to increase the quick launch facility’s height by twenty feet is drawing the scrutiny of Bolton’s Zoning and Planning Boards, both of which will have to approve the expansion before it can be sent to the Adirondack Park Agency for its review.

“No one, to my knowledge, has ever sought a variance to exceed Bolton’s 35-foot height limit,” said Henry Caldwell, a member of the Planning Board. » Continue Reading.


Friday, March 13, 2015

Avoiding A Return To The Era Of Ill Feelings

Anti APA activist Anthony D'Elia, State Senator Ron Stafford and Governor Mario Cuomo in Essex County in the 1980s - mirror file photoAfter former Governor Mario Cuomo’s death on January 1, a former colleague reminded  us that when Cuomo signed the legislation authorizing the creation of an Environmental Protection Fund on Lake Champlain in 1993, much of the tension that had on occasion erupted into violence as a result of the  restrictive recommendations of the 1990 Commission on the Adirondacks in the 21st Century, was defused.

A compromise had been reached. Funds were awarded for land acquisition, but there was also money for local governments in the form of grants for infrastructure and hamlet re-development. Of greater importance, the self-appointed leaders of the so-called Property Rights movement lost their constituencies and many of them left the area. Reasonable, responsible people on both sides of the issue reasserted control of the conversation. That’s how things have stood, more or less, until recently. » Continue Reading.


Monday, March 2, 2015

Lake George Group Presents Greenway Proposal

Cleverdale Lake Geroge Archival PhotoNot that long ago, or at least within living memory, Cleverdale on the east side of Lake George was home to fewer than five year-round families; the children attended a one-room school house on Ridge Road. A common footpath followed the shore, allowing residents to walk to church in summer.

Modern times, however, came quickly enough. Lakefront residents appropriated the sections of footpath that crossed their lawns. New York State acquired 28 acres on Sandy Bay and planned to build a public beach and picnic area there, a prospect so alarming to local residents, they sought to purchase the tract themselves. Eventually, the state reconsidered, perhaps as a result of pressure applied by some politically well-connected locals, and the land is still undeveloped. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Playhouses: Overlooked Adirondack Architecture

Pell playhouse at the Pavilion near Fort TiconderogaFor children traveling to the Adirondacks in the 19th century, it was not enough to have unregulated access to the woods and waters, much of which could be explored in their own, custom built boats.

They were built their own playhouses as well. According to Steven Engelhart, the executive director of Adirondack Architectural History, several great camps featured playhouses and childrens’ cabins, some in the rustic style, others suited to more eclectic tastes.

It’s not clear how many survive, but we know of at least two in the Lake George region. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, February 12, 2015

Cuomo Endorses A Park-Wide Invasive Species Plan

Andrew Cuomo in the AdirondacksThe Adirondack Park may become the first region in New York State to have its own, integrated program to halt the spread of aquatic invasive species.

Governor Andrew Cuomo has asked the state legislature to appropriate $1 million  to develop the  Adirondack-wide strategy.

According to Morris Peters, a spokesman for the Division of the Budget, the money for the new initiative will come from an increase in appropriations to the Environmental Protection Fund. » Continue Reading.


Monday, February 9, 2015

Adirondack Masterpieces At The Hyde Collection

Homer Dodge Martin (1836-1897), Mountain View on the Saranac, 1868If The Hyde Collection had ever hoped to mount an exhibition of the art of the Adirondacks, the result could not have been more comprehensive than the show that the Glens Falls museum is presenting through April 12th.

“Wild Nature: Masterworks from the Adirondack Museum,” as the title signifies, is composed solely of works within the permanent collection of the Adirondack Museum.

For those who have never visited the museum in Blue Mountain Lake, “Wild Nature” is an introduction both to master works of American art depicting the landscape of the Adirondacks and to the museum itself, which is closed in the off-season. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Lake George ‘Pinnacle’ Protection, Trails Planned

PinnacleThe Pinnacle, the Bolton landmark visible from Lake George and the Cat and Thomas Mountains Preserve, may be protected from development after all. More than five years after Ernest Oberer first proposed building houses on the ridgeline, the Lake George Land Conservancy intends to purchase the property, said Jamie Brown, the Conservancy’s new executive director. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Lake George Land Conservancy’s New Director Jamie Brown

Jamie Brown LGLCAs the director of land protection for Ducks Unlimited, Jamie Brown worked throughout the United States to protect tens of thousands of acres of wetlands and waterfowl habitat.  “While I loved the scope of Ducks Unlimited’s work, I missed the opportunity to walk the lands that were being protected and to be a part of the community we were serving,” said Brown.

As the Lake George Land Conservancy’s new executive director, Brown will have the chance to do that. While his focus will be narrower in scope, confined largely to the Lake George watershed, his view will be more detailed, something he welcomes and one reason why he chose to apply for the position. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Dave Wick Controversy: Basil Goes Fishing

Basil SeggosBy disposition, if not by design, Dave Wick is the local official least likely to become the center of a controversy. He directed Warren County’s Soil and Water Conservation program for almost twenty years and in 2012, he was recruited to succeed Mike White as the executive director of the Lake George Park Commission. Wick’s talent, a rare one, lies is combining practice with politics; engineering storm water controls, demonstrating the finer points of boat decontamination, while, at the same time, attracting and retaining the good will of elected officials and influential environmentalists. If he suffers from existential anxiety or self-doubt, cynicism or an ironic sense of humor, it’s not evident. The earnest, self-confident demeanor that he wears at public meetings, in conferences with officials and in interviews with the local press, never falters.

So it must have come as a surprise to Wick when, on November 14, he was summoned to the State Capitol and told that he was to submit his resignation, immediately. His inquisitor, Basil Seggos, must have been equally surprised when Wick replied, in so many words, that he’d rather not. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, December 11, 2014

1935 Gold Cup Boat Races Being Recreated

Lake george 1935 speedboat raceIf all goes as planned, in September of 2015 a fleet of vintage race boats will take to the waters of Lake George in a nostalgic tribute to a bygone era in power boating’s classic past. For the first time in over 80 years the shoreline in Bolton Landing will echo the roar of the exhausts from a fleet of Gold Cup replicas and vintage boats.

Norm Dasher, Teri Hoffman, Bob Phillips and Buzz Lamb are the founding members of The Gold Cup Committee of Lake George and they aim to re-create what was then power boating’s most prestigious race. » Continue Reading.