Saturday, June 4, 2016

6/04 Locks 9-13 to Canajoharie Chamber of Commerce Day

We woke to an absolutely beautiful day.  John calls it a Chamber of Commerce Day.  It was warm, bright and sunny with little humidity.  We continued west on the Erie Canal.
There are so many things to enjoy as we go along.  My granddaughters, Anna and Abigail, love trains.  The train traffic beside and across the canal is impressive.  The trains carry so many of the goods across the US.  Many of the trains had over 100 cars/tankers that they were pulling. 
We were going west under a railroad trestle, which had trains going both north and south.
The trains replaced the canal for hauling goods.  In the next picture, you can see the water, the train, and a road above it with a truck carrying cars.
The farms along the canal are scenic.

Somethings are unusual.  In Amsterdam, NY, there is a Volkswagen Bug that was placed on a smoke stack over 40 years ago.  It was done as an advertisement for a car repair shop.  The shop is now out of business, but the bug remains atop the smoke stack.
Lock 12 at Schoharie Crossing had something special in store for us.  It was Paddle Along the Mohawk Day.  When we called to ask the lock master to open the lock, he told us that he had about 40 kayakers in the lock.  He would be lowering them to our level and then let them out before we entered.  When the lock gates opened, it looked as if multi-colored bugs were spilling out.
They were happy and were waving for our picture.
Also at lock 12, was a plaque dedicating it to James Shanahan, who built the first bridge over the Hudson River in 1864 and was the superintendent of the New York State Canals.
Canajoharie is our stop for the night.  They have a beautiful waterfront.  The docks here can be used for free and they even have free electrical hook ups.
The town is quaint and all the buildings reflect the architecture of the late 1800's.  Because of several destroying fires, a town law was passed that all building be made of brick.  So all the original brick structures exist today.


The Beech Nut Company was started by Bartlett Arkell in Canajoharie.  He collected art and shared it with the employees.  His collection was mostly of American artists.  The collection is now housed in the Canajoharie Library and Arkell Museum.  What a great collection!!  There are several Winslow Homers; On the Beach and Watching the Breakers, A High Sea were two of my favorites.  Arkell commissioned the painting of the USS Constitution, Old Ironsides by Clifford Ashley in 1929, which helped raise money for the renovations.  Childe Hassam's Provincetown was another favorite.  Other notable artists were John Singer Sargeant and Gilbert Stuart.  Sculpture was not ignored and there was a Remington bronze horse.

In 2011, the Beech Nut plant closed.  It was sad to have seen such impressive art across the street from the decaying plant.  In all the small towns we visit, the industry that built the towns is gone.

Lat 42 degrees 54.55 North
Long 74 degrees 34.25 West

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