Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Cross Island Chapel

Location:   Oneida, New York
Year:   1989

The world's smallest functioning church, the Cross Island Chapel, stands on a small island in the midst of Sconondoa Pond in Oneida, New York. Built in 1989, with a floor area of 51 inches x 81inches (28.68 square feet), it seats 2 people and has standing room for an officiant. Witnesses sit onshore. It is accessible only by boat, and has hosted numerous weddings. Cross Island Chapel is non-denominational, and "dedicated as a witness to God." A cross stands nearby on a rocky outcrop.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Famous New Yorkers: John Purroy Mitchel

Location:   New York, New York 
                  Uniondale, New York
Year:   1918

Known as "The Boy Mayor of New York," John Purroy Mitchel was New York City's youngest-ever mayor, elected to office in 1914 when he was only 34. He died less than six months after he left office, at age 38, while he was training to join the Army Air Corps during World War I. He fell out of his biplane after his seat belt failed during a loop. The city erected a memorial to him in Central Park, and Mitchel Field, on Long Island (now the site of Nassau Community College), was named for him.

Monday, April 28, 2014


Location:   New York State and Illinois
Year:   1970 and 1988

Interstate Highway 88 (I-88) is made up of two stretches of road, one in New York State, connecting Albany and Schenectady, and the other in Illinois, connecting Chicago to Rock Island. Both stretches are intrastate stretches and there is no connecting link anywhere between them. 


Sunday, April 27, 2014

White Deer in Romulus

Location:   Romulus, New York
Year:   1941

The Seneca Army Depot is a large, now-abandoned military base in Romulus, a town in western-central New York lying between Cayuga Lake and Seneca Lake in the Finger Lakes region. 

The area is full of wildlife, but the Seneca Depot was cordoned off in 1941. It remains cordoned off despite being sold in 1993. As a result, generations of animals on the property have become highly inbred.  Among them is an unusual herd of white deer, the largest in the world, numbering some 300 individuals. The deer are protected, and an organization called Seneca White Deer assures that they are neither poached nor hunted.

Although people speculate that the white deer are the result of some top secret, nefarious military experiment carried on at Seneca Depot, other white deer exist elsewhere in the world, and the odds are that the appearance of the white deer is simply a matter of genetics.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

A murder

Location:   Auburn, New York
Year:   Since Time Immemorial

A flock of crows is properly called a "murder." Yes, it is. And every year, every day between late Spring and early Autumn, a tremendous murder of crows, estimated between 50,000 and 70,000, descends at dusk upon Auburn's historic Fort Hill Cemetery like something out of an Alfred Hitchcock classic (based upon a short story by Daphne DeMaurier). 

Before Fort Hill Cemetery was a "cemetery" it was an ancient burial ground. Many people believe that the crows are a manifestation of the spirits of the departed.

Friday, April 25, 2014

The American Merchant Marine Memorial

Location:   Battery Park, Manhattan, New York.
Year:   1991

Oft-overlooked, the civilian Merchant Marine of the United States has faced just as many dangers at sea as the Navy, the Coast Guard, and the Marine Corps. Dating back to the birth of the Republic, unarmed and lightly-armed Merchant Mariners have, throughout history, faced down enemy naval ships and submarines dedicated to destroying the supply lifelines of the United States. 

Forcible impressment of American Merchant Mariners into the British Navy was one of the key causes of the War of 1812. Merchant Mariners were the preferred targets of Barbary Pirates and remain the target of Somali Pirates even today. During the Civil War, Confederate Commerce Raiders seized and sank scores of Northern Merchant Marine vessels. During two World Wars, Merchant Marine vessels faced sinkings at the hands of German U-boats in the Atlantic and  Japanese I-boats in the Pacific.  

The American Merchant Marine Memorial lies just offshore of the Staten Island Ferry Slip in lower Manhattan. Based on a World War II photograph, it captures, with disturbing realism, several doomed seamen atop a sinking vessel: one shouts for help, a second kneels in shock, a third reaches down not quite far enough toward the hand, extending out of the water, of a drowning mate. 

The scene, according to the statue's plaque, was "inspired by [an enemy] photograph of the victims of a submarine attack" in World War II. "Left to the perils of the sea, the survivors later perished."

Thursday, April 24, 2014

A Vampire In New York

Location:   Manhattan
Year:   2009

The first U.S. museum dedicated to vampire lore, The Museum of Vampyric Artifacts (MoVa) opened in lower Manhattan in the autumn of 2009. 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

The Merry-Go-Round Man

Location:   Binghamton, New York
Year:   1920s

George F. Johnson (1857-1948), the owner and CEO of Endicott-Johnson shoes, once the largest shoe manufacturer in the world, was a robber baron of the old school. "George F." was an unabashed Progressive and believed fervently in Theodore Roosevelt's "Square Deal" and FDR's "New Deal."   He instituted a Progressive labor system in his company which he called the "Square Deal" after T.R.'s initiative. Johnson City, New York, was named in his honor.

Coming from impoverished beginnings, he, his family, and his company (located in Endicott, the city he founded adjoining Binghamton), once employed some 25,000 workers. During World War II, this number doubled, as Endicott-Johnson was the primary supplier of GI footgear. 

People who came to work at Endicott-Johnson were greeted with, "Welcome to the E.J. family!" and George F. treated them like family. Not only were they all paid a living wage, but Johnson donated several city parks, a theatre, and a library to the greater Binghamton community. He also maintained a company store and farmer's market, subsidized worker housing at a good cost, provided excellent low-cost health care, and gave everyone who worked for him a free pair of shoes at Christmas. Children's shoes for the workers were always free. 

Even during the Great Depression, when George F. had to cut salaries he laid no one off: "There's plenty of dandelions on the hills, we'll eat those if we have to," he declared. He hated unions, and worked to undermine any union organizers in his factories. However, if he thought a union had a good idea, he would adopt it.  When a group of Endicott-Johnson employees considered unionizing, George F. approached them with tears in his eyes, imploring them not to.

Some people resented his paternalism and complained that working conditions in the tanneries particularly were rough, but Endicott-Johnson never unionized, and many of its employees worked there for up to five decades.

One of Johnson's more whimsical donations was that of six antique carousels in the region. As a child George F.'s family was so poor they could not spare him the few cents for a carousel ride, and so carousels became for him a symbol of the good life. He always called them merry-go-rounds and so do the locals. Each is free to use (except Ross Park, which charges one piece of litter per rider as a way of keeping the park neat. Ross Park also maintains a carousel museum).  The antique carousels (six of less than 200 remaining in the world) give Binghamton the name of "Carousel Capital of The World." Riding all six carousels in a day is known as "riding the circuit."

After George F.'s death, the company carried on, but was eventually bought up by venture capitalists who moved almost all manufacturing to China, leaving the locals underemployed and bereft of benefits.One of the new owners referred to George F.'s business practices as "anachronistic. I doubt whether the modern American worker would tolerate being demeaned in such a way."  

Oh, the humiliation! I didn't have to pay for my children to wear the shoes I made!

George F.

Endicott-Johnson stands abandoned today

The "Square Deal Arch" on the Binghamton/Johnson City border

One of the merry-go-rounds

A Broome County locator map for "The Circuit"

Thumbs up!


Tuesday, April 22, 2014

The Chemung River

Location:  West-central New York State
Year:    1615

The Chemung River, which rises near Painted Post, New York, is a tributary of the Susquehanna River. Its name means "Tusk-in-the-Water" in Iroquois, and it was named for the mammoth tusks that the Hudenosaunee found along its course. 

The Chemung River was "discovered" by a French trapper, Stephen Brule, in 1615.  By the time of the Revolutionary War, the Chemung River was a major trade route in this frontier area, and many towns grew up along its banks  and in the area, including Elmira, Corning (home of Corning Glass), and Waverly. In 1833, the Chemung Canal linked the river to the Erie Canal, and the river became a major transshipment point for Pennsylvania coal to reach the Great Lakes, and hence the Atlantic Ocean, for easy shipping overseas. This trade continued even after the canals were supplanted by the railroads. The region grew rich, and remained rich, for most of the 19th and 20th Centuries as part of the Rust Belt. Unfortunately, the outsourcing of American manufacturing put the Chemung River watershed into an economic decline beginning in the 1970s; it remains an economically-depressed area.

The Corning Museum of Glass


Sunday, April 20, 2014

Upstate / Downstate

Location:   New York State
Year:   Always

The Endless Debate

The terms "Upstate" and "Downstate" are unofficial geographic designations in New York State. The terms appear in names (such as "SUNY Downstate Medical Center"), but there's no exact definition of what comprises Upstate and Downstate.

Except that there is. The five boroughs of New York City --- Manhattan (aka New York County), The Bronx (aka Bronx County), Queens (aka Queens County), Staten Island (aka Richmond County) and Brooklyn (aka Kings County) are all considered Downstate along with Nassau County and Suffolk County on Long Island. 

What northern suburbs? You mean like, where they keep the cows?

The problem arises when one considers the northern bounds of Downstate --- for example, some people include Ulster, Sullivan, Dutchess, Putnam and Orange Counties in Downstate because of their geographic proximity to the City. 

Westchester County and Rockland County, just north of The Bronx, were, at one time, rural counties, and arguably Upstate, but the expansion of New York City's northern suburbs make them more akin to Downstate's Nassau and Suffolk.  In some people's eyes.

Westchester and Rockland? Upstate means "UP," you diesel-breathing Urban Cowboys!

Not that "rural" necessarily equates with "Upstate." After all, most of the cities of New York State---Buffalo, Albany, Binghamton, Troy, Schenectady, among many others---lie Upstate. 

And population density isn't quite the defining factor either, since areas of Nassau and Suffolk are still exurban in nature. 

What's with Dutchess?

Oh, vexed New York! This hasn't always been a friendly debate. Insular Upstaters complain mightily about high State taxes that go Downstate, and about being associated with the stiletto-wielding and wearing denizens of the Big City even by name alone. 

Downstate is populous. Of nineteen million New Yorkers, over eight million live in New York City alone. 1.5 million live in Nassau, and another 1.5 million in Suffolk.  Almost a million live in Westchester. Rockland comes in dead last at 300,000. At least thirteen million New Yorkers are Downstaters by this calculus. By comparison, less than seven million people live Upstate in the remaining 53 counties of the State.

Edward Koch, once Mayor of New York City, tanked his gubernatorial campaign by calling Upstaters "hicks." Although every lawyer knows that the veracity of a statement is crucial to its probative value, such musings were not meant to mollify. Under most circumstances Hizzoner might have still won the election, but Downstate he faced Mario Cuomo of Queens, who was popular not only in his home county, but in heavily Italian-American Staten Island (Richmond) and in Nassau.  Koch was forced to split the Downstate vote. And though Upstaters might have either voted for Koch based on name recognition or else typically stayed home in a battle between two boys from NYC, Upstate's eventual anti-Koch vote was so solid that it swept Cuomo into the Governor's chair.  The lesson: You can quietly ignore Upstaters, but don't piss them off.

"How'm I doin'?"

There are Upstate secessionists, who want to break away from the populous cosmopolitan tail that wags the less dynamic dog. Western New Yorkers often fancy themselves Midwestern kinfolk of Buckeyes and Hoosiers. Northeastern New Yorkers tend to consider themselves friends to New Englanders. For that matter, Brooklynites oft give Manhattanites a hearty Bronx Cheer.  So what to do?  What to say?

What's this? An Upstater Acceptability Map? Red for Evil Urbanites, Blue for Untrustworthy Long Islanders, Orange for Sort-of Maybe Upstaters, and Pink (pink?) for Upstaters That Upstaters Don't Want? And where's Sullivan County?

Perhaps the best definition of Upstate versus Downstate has to do with demographics. Areas whose cultural center of gravity is New York City are Downstate. Anyplace else in New York State is Upstate.

Until someone comes up with a better idea, that is.


The Church of The Transfiguration

Location:   Blue Mountain Lake, New York
Year:   1885

Blue Mountain Lake is a small resort town located in sparsely-populated Hamilton County, New York. Particularly at the end of the 19th Century, it was a popular retreat for hunters and wealthy downstaters seeking a rustic retreat. 

The Church of the Transfiguration is an historic Episcopal church located at the town's crossroads on the shore of Blue Mountain Lake. Services are held every Sunday from June through September and at other specially-scheduled times, weather permitting.

It is a small, single-story, gable roofed structure with a central belfry at the west end. The building was built in 1885 and is constructed of barked spruce logs, mitred at the corners, and set upon a high foundation of random fieldstone. The church features Tiffany glass windows. The church also has a bell made at the Meneely Bell Foundry, famed for the quality of its work product.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Bizarre Laws of New York State

Location:   New York State
Date:   Antiquated
The legal penalty for jumping off a building is death.
Adultery is a criminal act.
New Yorkers cannot dissolve a marriage for irreconcilable differences, unless they both agree to it.
A person may not walk around on Sundays with an ice cream cone in his/her pocket.
Women may go topless in public, providing it is not being done to promote a business.
A fine of $25 can be levied for flirting.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Hell Gate

Location:   The East River
Year:   1614

Hell Gate is a short, shallow and narrow tidal strait in the East River separating Long Island from Randall's Island and Ward's Island. Hell Gate was discovered by the Dutch explorer Adrien Block, who traversed it as he sailed through Long Island Sound to New York Harbor. 

The name Hell Gate is derived from the Dutch word "Hellegat" which can mean either "Heaven's Gate" or "Hellhole." In either case, the name was bestowed ironically. With its swift moving currents, dramatic tides, quick and unpredictable shoaling, and many half-submerged rocks, Hell Gate has always been a dangerous place to navigate, and is a ships' graveyard. The colliding waters of the Harlem and East Rivers historically eddied around Pot Rock, Greater Mill Rock, Little Mill Rock, The Hen and Chickens, Frying Pan, Ni**erhead, Bald-Headed Billy, Bread and Cheese, the Hog's Back, Flood Rock Island, and others too small to name.

Over time, at least a thousand commercial ships have been lost or severely damaged in Hell Gate. It is, unfortunately for hapless sailors, the primary passage for ocean vessels entering New York Harbor from the north. A Hell Gate passage is essential to reach the many ports of Westchester, Long Island, and Connecticut, and saved hours on the trip to Boston or New York through the calmer waters of Long Island Sound.  In addition to the heavy ship traffic, the area is and was a prime fishing area, and ferries used to ply its waters too, moving goods and people between The Bronx and Queens. 

In 1851, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers began blasting and dredging in Hell Gate, trying to make it a safer passage. The process took seventy years, and ended in 1912 with the removal of the last of the old obstacles. The Little Hell Gate between Randall's and Ward's Islands was landfilled, and the Bronx Kill was narrowed. 1912 was also the year that the Hell Gate Bridge was built, an arched railroad bridge which connects New England with Long Island.  In 1936, the Triborough Bridge, which connects the boroughs of Manhattan, The Bronx, and Queens was opened for automotive traffic. 

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Coteau jape ti clied seif.

Location:   Queens
Year:   1931

Alfred Mosher Butts created Scrabble in 1931. He hand-designed the first Scrabble board at his home in Jackson Heights.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

The First License Plates

Location:   Albany, New York
Year:   1910

New York was the first State to require license plates on cars, in 1910. Prior to 1910, license plates were either issued by municipalities or were voluntarily affixed to cars by their owners who used the car's factory number or  randomly assigned their own numbers to the plates. Since there were so few cars in the first decade of the 20th Century, the voluntary plate system sufficed for local needs. Pre-1910 plates are now valuable collector's items usually called "leather license plates" since they were customarily made out of stamped leather.

A 1910 "official" plate

A 1905 leather plate and registration disc

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Olean, New York

Location:   The Southern Tier
Year:   1643

Olean is a small, but once-bustling, town along the New York-Pennsylvania latitudinal border, located in western central New York State.

Once part of the territory of the Wenro Indians, the area was later occupied by the Seneca who essentially exterminated the Wenro. French fur trappers were the first Europeans to visit the area of Olean, where they discovered the first oil reserves in North America. The town was originally called "Ischue," an Iroquois word meaning "Greasy Springs." In 1808, the name "Olean" was invented from the Latin word "oleum" meaning oil (as in "petroleum").  

Olean's location on the Allegheny River made it a transportation hub in the early 1800s. Railroad depots were built there in the mid-1800s to move local timber.  The town was also infamous for rumrunning during Prohibition. 

Although the original settlers were farsighted, understanding that fossil fuels had a future, that future was way off in the future. It wasn't until the early 1900s that Standard Oil based its New York operations (Socony) in Olean, which immediately became the world's largest tank farm, a collection point for petroleum from New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio and New Jersey. 

Socony closed its operations in Olean in 1954, as the eastern oil fields petered out. As Socony withdrew so did many of the 25,000 residents. Today, Olean is a half-deserted Rust Belt town, very modestly important as the largest town and County Seat of  Cattaraugus County.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Urban alligators

Location:   The sewers of New York City
Year:   1935

Probably the most famous New York City urban legend concerns the (giant) (blind) (maneating) (albino) alligators that (reputedly) lurk in the New York City sewer system. According to reports, the alligators feed off the rodents, reptiles and vermin that breed in the city's ripe pipes, with an occasional drifter as an appetizer. 

Back in the earlier 20th Century, pet alligators became a fad. According to the legend, City kids bought baby alligators as pets and flushed them into the sewer system when they grew just big enough to be dangerous. The creatures then bred, or so it's said. Although everybody always knows someone who did the flushing, actual first-person reports are scarcer than hen's teeth.   

However --- there have been sporadic newspaper accounts of sightings throughout the years, including the most famous one, published in the February 10, 1935, edition of The New York Times, about an 8-foot-long gator that was pulled from a Harlem manhole.  There have been authenticated reports of snakes finding their way up through toilet piping. And researchers have found that conditions in the sewer system are damp enough, dank enough, dark enough, warm enough and humid enough to support an alligator colony. So --- ???

Saturday, April 12, 2014

The Official State Mammal

Location:   Throughout New York State
Year:   1975

New York State's official mammal, the beaver  (Castor canadensis), is unmistakable due to its large body size (up to 65 pounds and up to three feet in body length) and broad flattened tail (up to 10 inches long and 6 inches wide).

The beaver was central to the Native American and early colonial economies of the future State. Beaver pelts were so valuable that they were used as a form of currency, and the Iroquois instituted an imperialistic war in the 17th Century in order to control the beaver trade. 

The Algonquin word for beaver means "friendly,"  and along with corn, beans and squash, the beaver was one of the four bases of plenty among the Haudenosaunee Confederacy.

Beavers are also crucial to the ecosystem since their natural habit of damming small streams and creeks creates marshlands that result in far greater biodiversity.

Due to its historical importance, the beaver was named the Official State Mammal in 1975. 

Friday, April 11, 2014

Famous New Yorkers---Peter Matthiessen

Location:   Sagaponack, New York
Year:   1927-2014

Peter Matthiessen, State Author of New York (1995-1997) was born in New York City on May 22, 1927 to Erard A. and Elizabeth (Carey) Matthiessen. His father was a successful architect, and a scion of the old Dutch Knickerbockers of New York. 

During his young years, Peter Matthiessen attended the prestigious Hotchkiss School with his neighbor, friend and classmate, George Plimpton. Matthiessen was later to write that "The Great Depression troubled his family not at all," but it troubled the younger Matthiessen morally. At the age of fifteen he wrote to the Social Register to have his name stricken from the rolls, and at age eighteen joined the Navy during World War II, where he served in the Pacific. When the time came, he refused much of a sizeable inheritance. 

After completing his Navy service (1947), he received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Yale in 1950. Having spent part of his junior year at the Sorbonne, he returned to Paris in 1950, and with Plimpton founded the famed literary journal The Paris Review. Unknown to anyone at the time, he had been recruited by the Central Intelligence Agency, and his position at The Paris Review was part of his cover. Matthiessen, who along with other young Ivy Leaguers of his generation thought that he was promoting American values through his work with "The Company," quickly became disillusioned with the C.I.A.'s activities, and renounced his position as an agent. He was later to say that his stint with the C.I.A. was the only one of his adventures he regretted. 

After returning to the United States from Paris he settled on Long Island in the South Fork town of Sagaponack, where he was to live some sixty years. He wrote, and worked either as a commercial fisherman or a charter boat captain at times, though he was often away on adventures.  He married Patsy Southgate , the daughter of one of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's advisors in the early 1950s. They had two children and divorced in 1956.

After his divorce, Matthiessen began traveling the world. A quiet, intensely observant man, his travels often colored his novels and his novels colored his non-fiction writing. In 1965, he had his first large commercial success with At Play In The Fields of the Lord, based upon his Amazon River travels. Although Matthiessen described himself as a novelist first and foremost, his non-fiction is at least as arresting. Like Loren Eiseley, Peter Matthiessen became a lyrical chronicler of nature:  The Cloud Forest described in non-fiction his time in the South American rainforest, Under The Mountain Wall was a memoir of his time among New Guinea tribesmen, The Tree Where Man was Born covered his adventures in East Africa. Blue Meridian, a book about Great White Sharks, was read by Peter Benchley, who was inspired to write Jaws. When translated to film by Steven Speilberg,  Jaws became the first $100,000,000 movie in history. 

Probably the best known of Peter Matthiessen's books is The Snow Leopard, written in the 1970s. Matthiessen began to practice Zen Buddhism in the late 1960s. He often told the story of, how having returned from a months-long trip abroad, he found several Zen monks in his driveway upon his return, invited there by his wife, Deborah Love, who he married in 1963. Intrigued, Matthiessen became a devoted student of Zen. After Deborah Love's premature death due to cancer, Matthiessen fled New York for a time, traveling to the Himalayas as part of an expedition to study the rare Blue Sheep. Matthiessen's notes from that trip became the text of The Snow Leopard, an intense record of a man making as great an internal voyage as external. The Snow Leopard won the National Book Award. He is the only author to win the National Book Award for both fiction and non-fiction. 

Matthiessen followed The Snow Leopard  with Far Tortuga, a novel remarkable for its Zenlike spareness --- he uses almost no metaphors in his writing. Matthiessen was to write Nine-Headed Dragon River, about his journey into Zen. Ultimately, he achieved the status of a Roshi, a Senior Zen teacher. 

Matthiessen married Maria Eckhart in 1980. During the 1970s and 1980s, he became intensely interested in the cultures and plight of Native Americans and produced two memorable books --- Indian Country, which many readers claim is akin to Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee in its intensity, and In The Spirit of Crazy Horse, about the U.S. government's vendetta against Leonard Peltier, leader of AIM, the American Indian Movement. Matthiessen was sued by an FBI agent and by the former Governor of South Carolina for slander, but the Courts dismissed their cases on First Amendment grounds.

Matthiessen kept his prolific pen active and continued to teach students at the Ocean Zendo in Sagaponack, and, through his Dharma heirs, at the Southern Palm Zen Group in Boca Raton, Florida.

In 2013, Matthiessen was diagnosed with leukemia, and died on April 6, 2014. His last novel, In Paradise, about a spiritual retreat to Auschwitz, was released two days after his death.


The Wind Birds
East of Lo Monthang
The Peter Matthiessen Reader
Courage For The Earth
Sal si Puedes
On The River Styx and other stories
Wildlife in America
Sand Rivers
Under The Mountain Wall
African Silences
Men's Lives
End of The Earth: Journeying To Antarctica
Indian Country
Blue Meridian
Tigers In The Snow
The Birds of Heaven
Zen and the Writing Life (audiobook)
The Cloud Forest
Bone By Bone
Nine-Headed Dragon River
Lost Man's River
The Tree Where Man Was Born
Far Tortuga
Killing Mr. Watson
At Play In The Fields of The Lord
Shadow Country
In The Spirit of Crazy Horse
The Snow Leopard
In Paradise

The Unisphere

Location:   Queens
 Year:   1964

A New York City icon, the Unisphere is a 12-story high, spherical stainless steel representation of the Earth. It is located in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park in the borough of Queens (Queens County), in New York City.

Commissioned to celebrate the beginning of the space age, the Unisphere was conceived and constructed as the theme symbol of the 1964–1965 New York World's Fair. The theme of the World's Fair was "Peace Through Understanding" and the Unisphere represented the theme of global interdependence. It is meant to represent Earth as seen from 6000 miles in space.  The three concentric rings surrounding our planet are symbolic representations of the orbits of manmade satellites (of which there were twelve in 1963, when construction began).

The Unisphere was donated to the Fair by U.S. Steel. It is the world's largest globe, standing 140 feet high (including its base) and weighing 900,000 pounds (including its base). It was built on the concrete foundations of the Trylon and Perisphere of the 1939-1940 World's Fair, and is surrounded by fountains.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Water Mill, New York

Location:   The South Fork of Long Island
Year:   1644

The village of Water Mill is the first and only town in New York State to boast both a functioning water mill and windmill together. A small English settlement whose wind- and water-powered machinery aided local farmers in milling grist, Water Mill is today an affluent community considered part of The Hamptons.