This Week in History – Week of March 29th
The Gansevoort Estate of Albany, which purchased local lands of Ellice, agreed to set up a public square as suggested by Arphaxed Loomis. It is now Western Park (Burke Park.)
Temperance – The ladies of the village have sent to the Trustees a long petition, signed by over 200, praying the exertion of their powers to stop gaming houses and grant no more liquor licenses.
As the village of Little Falls grew, it extended into the towns of Little Falls, Danube, and Manheim. On this date, voters passed a resolution, by a 914 to 77 vote, to petition the New York State Legislature for Little Falls to change its status to that of a city.
The Joint Legislative Committee on Preservation and Restoration of Historic Sites has recommended that Moss Island be given serious consideration by the State of New York as a park and geological site. Local residents, City Historian Edward J. Cooney and Donal Hurley have long championed the cause.
Members of the LFHS 1929–1930 state championship basketball team celebrated the 50th anniversary of the victory at a dinner party. In attendance were Milan Paracka, Sam Maddaloni, Jimmy Kane, Leland Clark, and Garner Beck.
The Inland Lock and Navigation Company was incorporated with General Philip Schuyler as president. The capital stock was $300,000, but the state added funds when necessary. The work at Little Falls cost $22,500.
Workers on the Western Inland Land Navigation Company were paid as follows: Blacksmith 10 shillings (s) per day, Carpenters 10 s per day, and Laborers 6 s per day, and each was furnish his own bedding, provisions, and Liquors, and work from sunrise to sunset allowing one hour at breakfast and at dinner. The company will provide the cook.
John Porteous was appointed postmaster at the little falls, and the post office was located in his store. The early mail was delivered once a week punctual by Adam Feeter.
The New York State Legislature granted a charter to incorporate a part of the Town of Little Falls as a village. Agents for the Ellice Estate appear to have had a hand in drafting the charter of nine handwritten pages, as the powers were very limited. By 1811, Little Falls contained about 30 or 40 houses, stores, a tavern, some mills, and a church. The entire village was on the north side of the Mohawk River.
A large fire at the Little Falls Knitting Mill, commonly known as “Bailey’s Mill”, caused about $30,000 in damages. Of major concern is the welfare of the two hundred and forty hands to whom the mill gave employment and who at this time are without work.
The bicycle is fast becoming a popular means of recreation. A cinder path was laid out from Little Falls to Herkimer.
Today was the first day of “Daylight Saving Time” in the entire United States. Little Falls practiced the new time schedule, where some other communities kept the practice of “God’s Time.”
Former city treasurer John L. Lockwood pleads guilty to embezzlement of city funds and is sentenced to 1 ½ to 2 years in Auburn prison. The shortage amounted to $6,410.
A rousing and enthusiastic welcome was accorded the Wilbur Crisp coached Little Falls High School basketeers – the Section 3 overall champs – on their triumphant return home from Syracuse. Led by Paul Mosny, Jim Brown and Bob McCully, the purple and white defeated Cherry Valley 59 -40 in the final.
Samuel Smith was appointed the third postmaster in Little Falls.
The water in the Mohawk River is believed to have been the highest since the great flood of 1865. John Stark, official water gauger for the city, reports a depth of 11 feet, 4 inches at the gauge located directly west of the Hansen Island bridge.
The Little Falls Dairy Company’s plant near the Danube Street cut on the West Shore Railroad is open for business. There are 65 stockholders in the company which will receive and ship milk on a co-operative basis.
There was a wireless telephone in the window of Coffee & McTiernan’s store which attracted considerable attention. It was run by two types of batteries and three dials.
William E. Barnes came to Little Falls, after fifteen years in business in Corning, to open a watch repair business here in the city. A graduate of the Reese Engraving School, Barnes had his shop in the basement of the Burrell Building near the entrance to the elevator. He was visible from a large window facing the Main Street sidewalk. He was in business for decades.
The four large brick and stone structures composing the Eagle Mills Company at the corner of West Main and Furnace streets, once owned by Hon. Titus Sheard, are being razed.
Levee’s jewelry store advertised The RCA “Bystander” table model TV set for sale with “bright, clear, steady pictures on a big 52 sq. in. screen.” This is equivalent to a 7 ¼ inch screen! No price was noted.
After 48 years of service in the Little Falls Police Department, Francis F. Reardon retired today. Reardon had served as chief of the department faithfully and conscientiously for 30 years.
The village purchased two acres of land from James Monroe, at $90 per acre, for an addition to Church Street Cemetery.
The estate of Henry Cheney, who died in 1878, was settled and the hammer factory was sold to Judge George A. Hardin, and the axe factory to Sheriff James H. Ives. Hardin, in turn, sold the hammer factory to Schuyler R. Ingham.
Four days before World War I was declared, New York State National Guard, Company B from Cohoes, with 125 men, arrived in Little Falls to guard the canal, Lock 17, and the railroad against sabotage. As the weather became warmer, they encamped at Moreland Park.
Today marks the first appearance of the Legion Drum Corps.
Arc Herkimer has purchased the Mohawk Valley Country Club and renamed it the “MV Golf and Event Center.” Established in 1907, it consists of an 18-hole golf course, restaurant and event space. Arc Herkimer is a private not-for-profit organization providing services and support at over 40 sites throughout Herkimer County for more than 600 people with disabilities.
The Rheimensnyders Bush mill and settlement, located east of the yellow church, on the Salisbury Road, just north of Little Falls was burned by a party of sixty British and Indians, and many inhabitants were carried off to Canada.
Little Falls had three paper mills, unfortunately all have been burned down. But Phoenix-like, they have all arisen again with new strength, beauty, and vigor. The Richmond mill is in operation, and the other two mills are nearly complete in construction.
The city loses one of its most aged and interesting landmarks in the tearing down of the stone building on Main Street, once known as the McKinster Hotel. The building was recently visited by fire.
A great campaign was initiated by Mayor Abram Zoller to have a branch of the American Red Cross in Little Falls. Led by many clubs and organizations, nearly 4,000 local citizens joined. The chapter was housed in the old bank building on South Ann Street after the bank’s move to new quarters in the Burrell building.
As the Great Depression continues, the local taxpayers group demanded a further reduction in the city and school budgets, claiming homeowners can no longer afford current taxes. It was suggested that there be larger cuts for higher salaried municipal employees. There were heated verbal exchanges throughout the meeting. The city fathers approved the budgets.
Before the Octagon Church was built, an agreement was drawn up stating that preaching was to be in German and English on alternating Sundays, and pews were to be sold to the highest bidders.
Lawyer Arphaxed Loomis advertised water rights for sale. About this time the Mill Street raceway was built that supplied power to many industries along the river.
Titus Sheard, an industrial leader in Little Falls during the Gay Nineties, passed away today.
This Week in History” is brought to you by the Little Falls Historical Society. Please Visit the Little Falls Historical Society Website and please consider supporting the Museum by becoming a Member! Download the membership form here!