This page conforms to the XHTML standard and uses style sheets. If your browser doesn't support these, you may not see the page as designed, but all the text is still accessible to you.

SCHENECTADY DIGITAL HISTORY ARCHIVE

Bringing the heritage of Schenectady County, New York to the world since 1996

You are here: Home » Resources » MVGW Home » Chapter 91

History of the Mohawk Valley: Gateway to the West 1614-1925
Chapter 91: History of the Mohawk Valley from 1900 to 1925.

[This information is from Vol. II, pp. 1351-1366 of History of the Mohawk Valley: Gateway to the West 1614-1925, edited by Nelson Greene (Chicago: The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1925). It is in the Reference collection of the Schenectady County Public Library at R 974.7 G81h. This online edition includes lists of portraits, maps and illustrations. Some images have been relocated to the area in the text where they are discussed. As noted by Paul Keesler in his article, "The Much Maligned Mr. Greene," some information in this book has been superseded by later research or was provided incorrectly by local sources.]

Contents | Biographies | Illustrations | Maps | Portraits

Go back to: Chapter 90 | ahead to: Chapter 92

Our Valley record from the beginning of the nineteenth century to the year of this publication — Period of electrical, automobile and highway development — Hon. Elihu Root and Owen D. Young, two Valley statesmen with world-wide influence — Root helps form the World Court — Young, a member of the 1924 Dawes Reparation Commission and the first agent general of reparations — 1925, The deeper Hudson and Valley ship canal possibilities — 1927-1933, Revolutionary sesquicentennials — 1925, Eclipse, cold wave, record snowfall and earthquake.

Each of the four periods covered in the four general chapters on the history of the Mohawk Valley from the close of the Revolutionary War to 1925, is marked by some distinctive characteristics which have been recounted in each of the chapters mentioned.

Aside from the dominating fact of the World War (1914-1918) the outstanding Mohawk Valley features, in the years from 1900 to 1925, have been developments in electrical power and transportation. The marvelous rise of the automobile and the development of a system of automobile highways somewhat overshadow the growth of other transportation systems and methods, in the public mind.

Besides the evolution of the automobile passenger cars, freight trucks and bus lines, and the consequent improvement of our Valley road system, there have been other important developments in the New York Central Railroad and electric trolley lines, besides the great waterway route created through the Mohawk Valley by the construction of the New York State Barge Canal in the years from 1905 to 1918.

One of the greatest industrial developments of the Twentieth Century in the Mohawk Valley as elsewhere, has been the growth of the electric industry and the establishment of hydro-electric power plants and their water storage and artificial reservoir systems. The latter subject has brought forward the consideration of a unified storage system of the waters of the Mohawk River and its tributaries. Because of the location of the General Electric Company at Schenectady in 1886, and its subsequent marvelous growth, the Mohawk Valley has played a great part in the development of the elertical industry which (between 1890 and 1925) is, said to have doubled in volume every five years. As stated in "Chapter 97 — Hydro-Electric Development in the Mohawk Valley," our Valley is one of the most intensively developed regions in the United States producing electricity by water power and our Mohawk River section forms a great power belt line and an important factor in the rapidly developing super-power system of North America. The 1925 hydro-electric power production of the Mohawk Valley amounted to about 165,000 horsepower, with the main plants on the Mohawk River at Cohoes and on the East and West Canada creeks. Valley public utility steam power production in 1925 came to over 100,000 horsepower, making the total public utility power production in the Valley about 265,000 horsepower in 1925. The Amsterdam steam plant of the Adirondack Power and Light Corporation produces about 80,000 horsepower (in 1925) with an ultimate capacity of 300,000 horsepower. By 1935 public utility companies will probably be producing over 500,000 horsepower in Mohawk Valley hydro-electric and steam plants. The ultimate development of electrical power uses is not yet (1925) in sight. Power lines are being continually built from the trunk lines out into farming sections and villages and communities distant from our great Mohawk River transportation, power and light belt line. The uses of electricity for power and small manufacturing on the farm are self-evident, while small communities reap great benefits. A great part of the future electrical development of the world will emanate from the laboratories of the General Electric Company at Schenectady, just as it has in the past. Radio and other electrical features are in a state of constant improvement at the hands of the scientists of this company, from which the radio station of "WGY" tells to the air many of the marvels of electrical invention, in which the Mohawk Valley stands at the forefront in the world of scientific creative development.

More important than these material things, in a way, has been the active, constructive work of two Mohawk Valley men looking toward world amity and understanding, as well as a practicable solution of the international difficulties arising as an aftermath of the World War. History will give a high place in the annals of constructive American statesmanship to Elihu Root and Owen D. Young, both natives of the Mohawk Valley — Mr. Root a native of Clinton, Oneida County and Mr. Young of Van Hornesville, Herkimer County. They are two big men who have come from small places, and the Mohawk Valley is justly proud of their achievements.

[Map: Schoharie County, Showing Townships and Railroads]

Senator Root has been an active figure in national and international affairs, from his appointment as Secretary of War by President McKinley in 1899. Owen D. Young's public services only date from his appointment on the committee of experts on reparations, appointed by Mr. Coolidge, a friend of Mr. Young, which subsequently became known as the Dawes Commission, because General (now Vice-President) Dawes was made its chairman. Although Mr. Young's career as an international statesman has been short, his effective and successful work, combined with an unusual personality, has made him both famous and popular with the American public. Mr. Young's long record as an executive handling great business affairs and his demonstrated constructive efficiency give promise of a brilliant public career for this unusually gifted son of the Mohawk Valley. See the biographies of Elihu Root and Owen D. Young in the Biographical section of this work.

Hon. Elihu Root was reappointed Secretary of War on March 5, 1901, when President McKinley was inaugurated for a second term. He later resigned this office. On July 1, 1905, President Roosevelt appointed Mr. Root as his Secretary of State, following the death of John Hay, the former Secretary.

In 1906, Secretary Root made his famous tour of the South American republics, on the U. S. S. Charleston. This voyage was made with the object of bringing about closer and more amicable relations between the United States and its South American neighbors and was thoroughly successful in this regard, due to the broad vision and marvelous diplomacy of the Secretary.

The Canajoharie-Palatine Bridge river bridge was burned in 1901. It was rebuilt in 1902 and reconstructed, by the State in 1912, during the building of the Barge Canal.

Yorkville became a village in 1902 and Scotia secured its village charter in 1904. In this work, Yorkville is considered as part of Utica and Scotia as a part of Schenectady. Cold Brook, Herkimer County, became a village in 1903.

October 1, 1902, the present Mohawk and Oneonta electric railroad was opened. It runs from Herkimer and Mohawk south through Jordanville, Richfield Springs, Canadarago Lake to Oneonta with a branch to Cooperstown on Otsego Lake.

In 1905, Barge Canal construction began on all three divisions, Erie (Buffalo to Waterford), Oswego (Three Rivers to Oswego), and Champlain (Waterford to Whitehall).

In 1905, the State purchased Guy Park, Amsterdam. In 1920 it was turned over to the Amsterdam Chapter, D. A. R., for use as a historical museum, which it is at present. In 1905, Gen. J. Watts De Peyster purchased Fort Johnson and presented it to the Montgomery County Historical Society, which now uses it as historical museum, housing fine Indian, Colonial and Revolutionary collections. In 1907, the State purchased Johnson Hall at Johnstown and made the Johnstown Historical Society its custodian. In 1925, the Johnson Hall grounds were being improved by the parking of the space at the rear of the Hall. Both Fort Johnson and Johnson Hall are annually visited by thousands of interested tourists, as is Guy Park at Amsterdam as well. The Mohawk Valley is particularly rich in its four Colonial historical museums, including the foregoing and the General Herkimer Home, while the Van Alstyne House (Fort Rensselaer Club) at Canajoharie, might well be added, making five Colonial Valley museums all located in houses of national historic importance.

October 3, 1906, work was commenced at Cranesville, Montgomery County on the Mohawk River section of the Barge Canal.

Herkimer celebrated its centennial as a village in 1907, when Senator Warner Miller presented a spirited bronze statue of General Herkimer to the town. The statue was the work of Burr Miller, a sculptor and the son of Senator Miller. It stands in Myers Park, Herkimer, and is not only the finest work of art ever produced by a Mohawk Valley man but it is one of the most striking military statues in the United States.

In 1908, Hon. William H. Taft of Cincinnati, and Hon. James S. Sherman of Utica were elected President and Vice President on the Republican ticket. (See the biography of Vice-President Sherman in the Biographical section of this history.)

Fort Johnson, Montgomery County, became a village in 1909.

Hon. Elihu Root was elected United States Senator from the State of New York in 1909.

In 1909, there were 18,457 farms in the Mohawk Valley producing crops, milk, etc., with an annual value of $30,000,000, exclusive of lumber (U. S. Census, 1910).

In 1910, the population of the six Mohawk Valley counties was 424,704, compared with a population of 9,113,614 in New York State.

In 1910, the fine concrete bridge, carrying the Mohawk Turnpike over East Creek, was built. It was designed by Charles Scott of Fort Plain.

In 1911, Harry N. Atwood made the first American aeroplane journey of over 1,000 miles, flying from St. Louis to New York City. He flew from a point a short distance west of Syracuse to Nelliston, opposite Fort Plain, a distance of 95 miles, on August 22, 1911. He remained in Fort Plain over night and passed eastward down the Mohawk Valley on August 23, 1911, making a short stop for repairs near Glen, south of Fultonville. This was the first aeroplane flight through the Mohawk Valley and was witnessed by thousands of spectators. (See the chapter on Atwood's flight.)

In 1911, the city of Little Falls held a celebration of its centennial as a village, at which time a pageant was held with relation to the town's centennial and also with regard to the completion of the Little Falls Big Lock of the Barge Canal. This lock, with a 40 1/2-foot lift, is the greatest lock on the western hemisphere, exceeding any on the Panama Canal. The Little Falls pageant drew many thousands to the city and the occasion was a notable one.

In 1912 there were 1,321 factories in the six Mohawk Valley counties, with 88,271 operatives producing manufactured goods of an annual value of $200,000,000. The chief manufactures were electrical apparatus, knit goods, gloves, white goods, rugs and carpets. (New York Department of Labor Statistics.)

In 1912, the Republican National Convention renominated William H. Taft for President and James S. Sherman as Vice President. The Progressives nominated Theodore Roosevelt for President and Hiram Johnson for Vice President. The Democratic convention nominated Woodrow Wilson for President and Thomas Marshall for Vice President. Because of the defection of Roosevelt from the Republican party, Wilson and Marshall were elected. Vice President Sherman died at his home in Utica, shortly before the day of the national election. Hon. Elihu Root was both temporary and permanent chairman of the Republican National Convention and it is not too much to say that his masterly strategy and command of the political situation then saved the Republican party from a collapse almost as serious as that which ended the Whig party prior to the campaign of 1856.

[Photo: Home of Senator Root]

From 1909 to 1915, Senator Root was a member of the Alaskan boundary tribunal, which held sessions for the consideration of the settlement of this boundary between the United States and Canada. Senator Root was largely instrumental in bringing this issue to a satisfactory conclusion. In 1910, Senator Root was counsel for the United States in the North Atlantic fisheries arbitration on which a satisfactory settlement was concluded between the United States and Canada. In the same year, Elihu Root was made president of the Carnegie Institute for International Peace. In 1913, Senator Root was made president of the Hague Tribunal of Arbitration, and in 1915 he was elected chairman of the New York State Constitutional Convention. A constitution was framed by this convention but was defeated at the following election, because of politics. It was not defeated on its merits, because probably not one voter in ten had read it prior to passing upon it.

In 1912, the state reconstructed the Canajoharie bridge, during Barge Canal building.

In 1912, the Mohawk Valley Chapters, Daughters of the American Revolution, marked the route of the march of General Nicholas Herkimer from his Fall Hill home to the battlefield of Oriskany. The first marker stands on the northern side of the General Herkimer Home, while the last marker is on the field of Oriskany, where the mortally wounded American commander sat under the beech tree and gave the orders which insured final victory. The markers were located at all important points of this famous and historic march, including the General's birthplace just east of Fort Herkimer. These handsome markers are of granite, with a map of Herkimer's march and an inscription appropriate to each locality, in bronze on the face of the upright stone. Several of the markers are illustrated in this volume. The series of monuments is a great credit to the patriotic spirit and enterprise of the Daughters of the American Revolution. The journey from the General Herkimer Home to the Oriskany battlefield was made by automobiles, on the occasion of this unveiling and large crowds were drawn to the points marked by the exercises and addresses which were given at each marker. The occasion was a red-letter day for the patriotic spirit and historical interests of the Mohawk Valley.

In 1913, the General Herkimer Home with the farm of 160 acres was purchased by the State of New York and made into a state reservation or park. It has been finely restored and is annually visited by a large and increasing number of tourists and Valley people. It is a favorite meeting place for Valley patriotic and historical societies. The home and park is managed by the Herkimer Home Commission. As its chairman, Col. Frank West of Mohawk, did a great work in the restoration of the house and improvement of the grounds, up until his death in 1923. Colonel West was an Army officer with a splendid record in Indian warfare on the plains and, for gallant services, was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross.

A new bridge was built over the Mohawk at Amsterdam in 1913.

In 1914 the village of Oriskany was chartered.

The fine concrete Turnpike and electric railway bridges, over the West Canada Creek at Herkimer, were built about 1915.

The centennial of the birth of Elizabeth Cady Stanton was celebrated by suffrage organizations all over the United States in 1915. That held at Johnstown, the birthplace of the pioneer suffragist, was particularly noteworthy.

In 1916, Sherrill, Oneida County, received a city charter, at that time being the smallest city in the state, with 1,400 population.

In 1918, the Barge Canal was completed. It had notable use in this, the last year of the World war, in the transit of submarine chasers, etc.

The World War began its dreadful course in 1914, and soon the industries of the Mohawk Valley were helping the Allies win the war by turning out vast quantities of supplies, arms and ammunition for the Allied armies.

Two of the greatest factors in the final success of the Allies were the Remington Arms Co. at Ilion, which manufactured hundreds of thousands of Lee-Metford rifles, improved from the original Lee rifle perfected at Ilion in 1874. The Savage Arms Co. at Utica was possibly even more of a factor in Allied victory, for it made the Lewis machine guns in such quantities that, at one time its production was two-thirds of that of all the English and Canadian Lewis machine gun factories combined. It would seem as if the same American ingenuity which accomplishes such marvels in time of war were applied as intensively to the solution of the problems of peace, that much would be gained for humanity.

In 1917, the United States entered the World War and its great and winning effort, with cumulative force, endured until Armistice Day, November 11, 1918. The history of the World War in connection with the Mohawk Valley would require a volume as large as the one we mentioned in connection with the Civil War. The intensive industrial effort of our Valley factories continued, with America now getting the major part of the supplies and arms produced.

It is estimated that 25,000 Americans from the Mohawk Valley were in the service of the United States Army and Navy during the World war.

The valiant service performed by our Valley National Guard companies is recounted in the chapters given to the Schenectady, Amsterdam, Gloversville, Mohawk and Utica units.

All the Mohawk Valley National Guard companies were generally incorporated in the Twenty-seventh Division which broke the Hindenburg line and started the German armies on their retreat to defeat. The Valley Guard companies were replaced by depot units which did valuable guard duty. Many of these depot company recruits were men over the military age.

The Mohawk Valley drafted men served in a number of different units, some being placed in the 77th (New England) Division.

Our boys in brown and boys in blue were strongly backed by the home folks of the Mohawk Valley. Sacrifices were gladly made to help the great national effort for victory. The Liberty Loan, Red Cross and other drives were splendidly backed up. The people of the Mohawk Valley can look back with pride upon their World War record. It certainly was a grand two years when we all sank partisanship and prejudice and were nothing but Americans. It might be said that the same spirit of American cooperation and national service is more needed now in time of peace, when it is hard, than in time of war when it is easy.

In 1917, President Wilson appointed Hon. Elihu Root of Clinton, Oneida County, as ambassador extraordinary to Russia, to investigate war conditions in that country and to extend the support of the United States to Russia's World War effort. The mission was frustrated by the Bolshevik Revolution. In 1918, Senator Root was appointed chairman of the War Savings Investment Society, a position which he holds today (1925).

In 1920, the Council of the League of Nations invited Hon. Elihu Root to join a commission to frame the provisions for an International Court of Justice. Senator Root accepted, journeyed to the Hague, Holland, and was a prominent figure in the proceedings which finally created the present court, to which both President Harding and President Coolidge have assiduously directed the attention of the people of the United States.

About 1920, work was begun on the Great Western Gateway Bridge spanning the Mohawk between Schenectady and Scotia. Completion of the bridge seems probable in 1926. The old Scotia highway bridge was a toll bridge until 1920 — the last in the Valley.

In 1920, the Mohawk Valley Historic Association was formed at a gathering of patriotic and historical societies of the Valley, held at the General Herkimer Home on August 6th, the 143rd anniversary of the battle of Oriskany. Col. John W. Vrooman was instrumental in the creation of this body which promises so much for patriotic American service and the historical interests of our Valley.

The 1920 population of the six Mohawk Valley counties was 481,315.

The DeWitt Clinton train, which ran over the Mohawk and Hudson Railroad in 1831, was taken westward to Chicago over the New York Central Railroad in 1921. This train also made the initial trip over the Utica and Schenectady Railroad in 1836. A few very aged persons, who saw the trip of 1836, saw the same train pass westward through the Mohawk Valley in 1921, eighty-five years later. Large crowds assembled at the Central stations to witness the passing of this historic train. In this same year the DeWitt Clinton train ran under its own steam on the New York Central Railroad tracks in New York City, a distance of a mile or more.

In 1922 WGY, the internationally famous broadcasting station of the General Electric Co., first went on the air. It is one of the pioneer stations of the country.

In 1922, the Soldiers' and Sailors' Hospital at the Masonic Home in Utica was dedicated with imposing exercises. The dedication was marked by a parade of 20,000 Masons, the greatest ever held in the Mohawk Valley. In the fall of the same year the World War memorial sculpture group standing to the north of the hospital was presented by the Italian Masonic lodges of New York City.

In 1922 a celebration of the two hundredth anniversary of the settlement of Palatines and the granting of the Stone Arabia patent was held in the Stone Arabia Reformed Church, built in 1788, which stands four miles north of Canajoharie. These celebrations were more or less general as the first Palatine settlement was made at Stone Arabia in 1712 and the Stone Arabia patent was granted in 1723.

On September 8 and 9, 1922, the city of Johnstown celebrated the sesquicentennial of the founding of Tryon County and the making of Johnstown its county seat. A beautiful pageant of the period of 1772 was held on the lawn at Johnson Hall, attended by Governor Miller, whose Holland Dutch ancestors settled just west of Johnstown prior to the Revolution. Governor Miller addressed the large crowd present. Attractive pageant costume scenes were held at the courthouse and elsewhere in Johnstown. The occasion awakened great historic interest among the people of the Mohawk Valley and reflected great credit upon the city of Johnstown and its people. (See the chapter on the city of Johnstown.)

The river bridge, between Fonda and Fultonville, had been destroyed by being struck by a Barge Canal boat. In 1923, a new bridge had been completed.

[Photo: Statue of Vice-President Sherman]

In 1923, a statue of Vice President James S. Sherman was unveiled on Genesee Street, facing the Parkway, in the city of Utica.

The semi-centennial of the beginning of work on the first Remington typewriter was celebrated at Ilion in 1923. Among the speakers were Governor Smith, Colonel Vrooman and Owen D. Young. Shortly after the Reformed churches of Herkimer and Fort Herkimer celebrated the two hundredth anniversary of the founding of their church societies. The occasion was somewhat of the nature of a celebration as well, of the two hundredth anniversary of the settlement of the Palatines on the German Flats in the Upper Mohawk Valley.

In 1924, President Coolidge appointed Owen D. Young, of Van Hornesville, a member of the later named Dawes Reparation Commission, the other members being General Rufus M. Dawes, of Chicago, and Henry M. Thompson, of Los Angeles. Mr. Young is the chairman of the board of directors of the General Electric Company and of the Radio Corporation of America. The object of the commission was to consider the whole matter of German reparations and to evolve a practicable plan of payment. The commission's work was successful and its plan was accepted by the Allies and Germany. Mr. Owen D. Young served as the first Agent General of Reparations for a period of several months and put the plan in working order. He returned to America and, in December, 1924, was given a great dinner by the business men of New York City at which Mr. Young made a notable address.

[Photo: Home of Owen D. Young, Van Hornesville]

Mr. Young occupies a handsome home opposite the beautiful park he created at Van Hornesville in 1924. It has a miniature lake created by damming the waters of the Otsquago in the glen in which the little village lies.

In 1924, the great dirigible airship, the Shenandoah, passed westward through the Mohawk Valley, Gateway to the west, thus completing our history of three centuries of water, land and aerial transportation.

On August 27, 1924, the sesquicentennial celebration of the first meeting of the Tryon County (Palatine District) Committee of Safety was held in the Fort Rensselaer Club in the Van Alstyne house at Canajoharie. The Van Alstyne house was the favorite meeting place of this historically important committee. State Historian Alexander C. Flick addressed the large audience which attended. The arrangements for this celebration were perfected by Mr. Harry V. Bush, of Canajoharie, representing the Montgomery County Historical Society.

The 1925 population of the six Mohawk Valley counties is estimated at over 500,000; Schenectady at 100,000; Schenectady City District, 115,000; Utica, 110,000; Utica City District, 130,000.

One of the most interesting and notable persons in the Mohawk Valley in 1925 is Grandma Filkins. On May 4, 1925, she will pass her 110th birthday. She has never ridden in a trolley car or a railroad train, which may account for her equable and generally pleasant disposition. She was born Delina Ecker near Starkville and all her long life has been spent on the hills of Herkimer County at Starkville, Jordanville and Van Hornesville. Delina Ecker was ten years old when the Erie Canal was completed in 1825. She was sweet sixteen when the DeWitt Clinton made its first trip from Albany to Schenectady in 1831 and she was a married woman of twenty-one, when the same train made the initial run over the Utica and Schenectady Railroad in 1836.

At the close of the last historical period chapter it is stated that its end was punctuated by a fire which, in 1900, destroyed Clinton Liberal Institute, Fort Plain. The end of the 1900-1925 period, which is here described, was punctuated with four exclamation points in the forms of four noteworthy days — an almost total eclipse of the sun on January 24, 1925, a cold wave on January 28, 1925, a record snow storm on January 29, 1925, an earthquake on February 28, 1925. The cold wave broke all known Mohawk Valley records, which had previously stood at 35 degrees below zero. The 1925 record breaker recorded very low temperatures from Amsterdam to Utica. Fort Plain and Freysbush were evidently in the center of the cold wave, Fort Plain recorded 42 degrees below zero while Freysbush registered minus 43 degrees. Inghams Mills had 40 below and Herkimer 42 below.

On the following day, Jan. 29, 1925, the Mohawk Valley had the heaviest fall of snow since the great blizzard of 1888. Twenty-six inches of snow fell in Fort Plain on the 29th. Railroad, mail, milk and express and freight traffic were tied up for three days and it was a week before some farmers on remote country roads could dig themselves out and bring their milk to market. The belt of heavy snowfall extended from Schenectady to westward of Syracuse.

The winter of 1924-1925 was an unusually severe one. At the time of this writing (March 5, 1925), it promised to break all records for cold. The number of zero days and the zero days of extremely low temperature was very remarkable. From 10 to 30 degrees below zero were recorded on a number of days. This cold was combined with an unusual amount of snow throughout the Valley, lying from three to four feet on a level. The hard winters of Colonial frontier days never exceeded that of 1924-5 in their severity.

The earthquake tremor of February 28, 1925, followed the great fault following the St. Lawrence River and its branch following Lake Champlain and the Hudson River. The quake was somewhat severe about Quebec and along the line of the faults mentioned it caused some alarm and but little damage. It was felt but little in the Mohawk Valley, except at Schenectady where its effects were more marked. A much more violent quake, about 1615, followed the same general lines mentioned.

One of the striking Valley features of 1925, was the passage of a bill in Congress, providing for a deeper Hudson channel of 27 feet from New York to Albany. This has developed a renewal of discussion of a ship canal through the Mohawk Valley to connect this ocean traffic with the Great Lakes.

The Deeper Hudson bill (incorporated in the Rivers and Harbors bill) passed the Senate and was signed by President Coolidge on March 3, 1925. It would seem, at this writing, as though the Mohawk River-Oneida Lake-Oswego River route would eventually be deepened to bring lake steamers to the ocean traffic port, soon to be built at the mouth of the Mohawk.

On the same day that President Coolidge signed the Deeper Hudson measure, the House of Representatives passed resolutions favoring early adherence of the United States to the World Court, by a vote of 301 to 28. Hon. Elihu Root of Clinton, was one of the chief figures in the formation of the World Court.

Plans were on foot in 1925 for a centennial celebration of the opening of the Erie Canal to be observed in the fall of 1925. A program of Mohawk Valley Revolutionary Sesquicentennials was in preparation by a committee of the New York State Historical Association, having in view a celebration of the most noteworthy events in American history which occurred in the Mohawk Valley. The chief feature will probably be the celebration of the sesquicentennial of the battle of Oriskany on August 7, 1927, in which the whole Mohawk Valley will join. The State Park Commission recommended the purchase of the Oriskany Battlefield as a State park in 1925.

Everything points to a great public tribute to the Revolutionary heroes of the Mohawk Valley in the Sesquicentennial period from 1927 to 1933.

Ames, Montgomery County, secured a village charter in 1924. With a population of less than 200, Ames is probably the smallest incorporated place in the Mohawk Valley.

The A. H. Smith Memorial Bridge, otherwise known as the Castleton Cutoff, was opened in 1924. It connects the Boston and Albany and New York Central Railroad main line with the great Selkirk railroad yards, which extend into Schenectady County at South Schenectady.

In 1924 surveys were in progress for the construction of the great Conklingville reservoir, otherwise known as Sacandaga Lake. This artificial lake will be 35 miles long and form the largest body of water in the Adirondacks. It will flood a considerable part of northeastern Fulton County.

[Photo: Business Section, Main Street, Schoharie]

Go to top of page | back to: Chapter 90 | ahead to: Chapter 92

You are here: Home » Resources » MVGW Home » Chapter 91

http://www.schenectadyhistory.org/resources/mvgw/history/091.html updated May 3, 2011

Copyright 2011 Schenectady Digital History Archive — a service of the Schenectady County Public Library