Haunted History Investigation of Herkimer Home

The doors of the historic Herkimer Home State Historic Site will be opened to the public for paranormal investigations at 6:00 p.m. on Friday, July 29th and Saturday, July 30th. This event marks the first time under NY State ownership that the historic 18th century mansion has been investigated for paranormal activity.

Both nights will begin with a lecture and a Ghost Hunting 101 Class provided by members of the New York Shadow Chasers, a paranormal research group who recently conducted a private investigation of the property. This short class will be followed by public paranormal investigations of the grounds led by Shadow Chaser staff. The public will explore the interior and exterior of the property using paranormal equipment often seen on many popular “ghost hunting” television shows.

Tickets for this event are $25.00 and reservations are required by calling (315) 823-0398. A limited number of tickets will be sold to the public. Proceeds from the tickets will support educational programs at the Herkimer Home.

Formed at SUNY Potsdam in 2002, the Shadow Chasers represent a team of academic professionals who research and document regional folklore. Certified by SUNY CITI Ethics as Social Science researchers, their investigations have covered numerous historic sites and properties throughout New York State, raising thousands of dollars to support local history.

Built circa 1764, the Herkimer Home is the Georgian home of Brigadier General Nicholas Herkimer, A Palatine German farmer, Indian trader, and prominent Mohawk Valley Businessman. As commander of the Tryon County Militia, Herkimer became a hero during the Battle of Oriskany in 1777. Despite a bullet wound to his leg and although greatly outnumbered, he and his command held the field. Following the battle, Herkimer was carried home, where he died in his mansion 10 days later.

Herkimer Home is located on NYS State Route 169, 4 miles southeast of Little Falls, 1/4 mile before NYS Thruway exit 29A. Events are in cooperation with the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation – Central Region. For more information about this and other events planned at the Herkimer Home visit www.littlefallsny.com.

Exhibit Features 100 Years of Adirondack Mail Boats

The Town of Webb Historical Association and Goodsell Museum, located at 2993 State Route 28 in Old Forge, Herkimer County, is currently featuring the exhibit “Floating Letters-The Town of Webb’s Mail Boats-Over 100 Years of Postal Tradition and Summer Fun” through the end of October.

The exhibit presents the history of the delivery of mail by boat in the Town of Webb on the Fulton Chain of Lakes, Big Moose Lake, Twitchell Lake, Rondaxe Lake, Silver Lake, and other locations from the early 1880s until the present. The exhibit includes photographs, certificates, ledgers and maps -as well as a wide assortment of custom leather & canvas/cloth mail pouches donated or on loan for the exhibit.

Included in the exhibit is the story of the Railway Postal Office (RPO) &#8211 a unique contract issued to Dr. William Seward Webb & the Fulton Chain Navigation Co. in 1901 whereby an official postal clerk rode on the boats to cancel mail, sell stamps & money orders, and perform other postal duties.

Additional exhibits at the Goodsell Museum include those on Adirondack wildlife, the Goodsell Family (George Goodsell was the first ‘mayor’ of the Village of Old Forge in 1903) and the 90th Anniversary of the Thendara Golf Club. The next featured exhibition, on early medicine, will open December 1st. The Webb Historical Association maintains a regular exhibit on early local doctors which will help form the basis the of the new exhibit.

The Goodsell Museum is open year-round- there is no admission charge.

The museum is also participating in Old Forge’s “First Friday Art Walk” events by including special exhibits connecting art with historical themes. On July 1st from 5-8PM they will have one of Lottie Tuttle’s oil paintings on display. Lottie was one of the Adirondack’s first female guides, she and her husband invented the devil bug fishing lure that was manufactured in Old Forge and marketed across the United States in the early 1900’s.

On July 9th the Association will hold its 9th Annual Benefit Auction. Preview and registration starts at 1 pm, bidding at 2 pm with auctioneer June DeLair from Constableville Auction Hall. The auction is held under a tent on the Goodsell Museum grounds and will include antiques, collectibles, new and nearly new items donated from members and friends of the museum.

The Association also has other programs, workshops, and walking tours. More information can be found online or by contacting Gail Murray, Director, via e-mail at historicaldirector@frontiernet.net or by phone at

Photo: The Steamboat Hunter &#8211 Captain Jonathan Meeker delivered mail to hotels and camps as early as 1883.

Old Forge Call For Quilts

The 25th Annual Northeast Quilts Unlimited seeks entries. The Exhibition will be held at the Arts Center/Old Forge’s new building October 8 to November 30, 2011. Cash prizes will be awarded in several divisions including bed, wall, Art/Innovative, traditional quilt, Adirondack theme, and popular vote. The Northeast Quilts Unlimited is an open show- all quilts entered will be displayed, and judged for awards.

This year’s National Quilting Association Certified Judge is Molly Waddell. The deadline to enter the exhibition is August 27. The fee to enter is $10/$8 members per quilt, with a maximum of 2 entries per quilter.

For more information and entry forms visit www.ArtsCenterOldForge.org, or call the Arts Center at 315-369-6411.

Mohawk Valley History Summer TeacherHostel

The Institute for History, Archaeology, and Education has announced that a Mohawk Valley History TeacherHostel will take place Monday, July 18 through Friday, July 22 at historical sites and attractions throughout the Mohawk Valley (Schenectady, Montgomery, Fulton, Schoharie and Herkimer counties)

In an effort to bring the riches of the Mohawk Valley experience to the classroom, this five day intensive program will bring to life many aspects that make the Mohawk Valley truly unique.

Discover the stories of the Iroquois, the Palatine Germans, the Dutch, the Erie Canal, the Valley’s Revolutionary history and ties to the Civil War and Industrial Revolution.

Explore how these topics of local history and heritage can be related to the American history story as a whole, along with the New York State Social Studies Standards for Learning. After these five days in the Mohawk Valley, you will feel that you have had a little taste of everything the Valley has to offer.

This history hostel is not just for teachers- however, anyone interested in the rich history of this area is welcome to join us for one or two days or for the full week. The fee for the entire week is $275, which includes meals.

See www.ihare.org for more information and a registration form.

Digital History Archive Adds Important Volumes

Bob Sullivan, of the Schenectady Digital History Archive, has announced that the first two (historical) volumes of Nelson Greene’s four-volume history of Fulton, Herkimer, Montgomery, Oneida, Schenectady and Schoharie Counties, History of the Mohawk Valley: Gateway to the West 1614-1925 is now online.

Included are more than 300 photos and maps, and a biographical section &#8211 more than 2000 pages so far, are online. Greene’s History joins the Hudson-Mohawk Genealogical and Family Memoirs, a four-volume set with more than 1300 family entries from Albany, Columbia, Fulton, Greene, Montgomery, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Schenectady, Schoharie, Warren and Washington Counties.