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Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Eastern NY & World Timeline 1813-1814 Eastern NY / World Timeline 1813-1814

© 2017

George White's newspaper The National Advocate (for the country) begins publication in New York City with H. Wheaton as publisher.    **     Petersburg, NY, native Reuben Babcock, Jr. is appointed brevet captain in order to raise a uniformed rifle company.    

Jan 21
Military officer, politician and explorer John Charles (C.) Fremont is born in Savannah, Georgia, to French immigrant school teacher Charles Fremon (sic) and Anne Beverly Whiting Pryor, to whom he was not married.    

Geertruy (Gertrude) Schuyler, 88, aunt of Alexander Hamilton's wife Elizabeth Schuyler, dies at the family farm in Palatine, NY.
Mar 27
Lithographer Nathaniel Currier - of Currier and Ives - is born in Roxbury, Massachusetts, to Nathaniel and Hannah Currier.

Jun 24
Congregationalist clergyman, social reformer and speaker Henry Ward Beecher is born in Litchfield, Connecticut, to Calvinist clergyman Lyman Beecher and his wife.    

Oct 5
Shawnee Indian chief Tecumseh is killed by American forces at Ontario's Battle of the Thames. His confederation dissolves at the tribes had to move west again.    
Oct 9
Italian composer Giuseppe Verdi is born in the village of Le Roncole (some sources say his birthdate was October 10th)
Oct 26
A force of British regulars, Mohawk Indians and Canadian militia defeat U.S. forces at Chateauguay.

Nov 12
French-American writer Michel Guillaume Jean de Crèvecœur (John Hector St. John in New York) dies in Sarcelles, France, at the age of 77, having returned to his birth country.

Dec 8
German classical composer Ludwig van Beethoven conducts the world premiere of his Symphony No. 7, Opus 92, in Vienna.

New York City
Burials below Canal Street are forbidden.

New York State
Microscope maker Charles Achilles Spencer is born in Lenox.    **    Circus impresario Lewis B. (L. B.) Lent is born in Somers.    **    The 57 members of Utica's First Presbyterian Society of Utica form a separate church.   **    Albany mayor Philip Schuyler Van Rensselaer  and the city council sign a charter creating the Albany Academy, an independent boys' college preparatory day school, enrolling students from the age of 3 through grade 12.

David Shriver, Jr., Superintendent of the Cumberland Road (aka the National Road) opens the Casselman Bridge over the Casselman River. The 80-foot one-arch stone bridge, the largest in America at this time, will open in 1815.    

After the naval Battle of Lake Erie the British abandon Ontario's Fort Malden at Amherstburg.

Jan 24
Massachusetts farmer, soldier and political leader William Heath, 76, dies at his birthplace in Roxbury. He will be buried in nearby Forest Hills Cemetery. The linearly town of Heath will be named in his honor.

Feb 22
Michigan politician Henry Porter (P.) Baldwin is born in Coventry, Rhode Island, to John and Margaret Williams Baldwin.

Mar 27
Andrew Jackson defeats the Creek Indians at Horseshoe Bend of Alabama's Tallapoosa River, (just west of the Georgia line).

May 10
Steamboat inventor Robert Fulton establishes service across the East River between Brooklyn's future Fulton Street and Manhattan's Fulton Street. That first steamer is the Nassau.

Jun 24
English stonecutter John Knowles is born in Otley, Yorkshire, to Joseph and Hannah Knowles.

Aug 4
Porter, NY, farmer Peter Tower dies in Cummingham, Massachusetts, his home state, at the age of 85.
Aug 9
The Treaty of Fort Jackson (Alabama) is signed with Andrew Jackson and the Creek Indians.
Aug 19
British forces land at Benedict, Maryland. 
Aug 24
British forces defeat the U.S. at Bladensburg, Maryland, to the northeast of Washington. This will later enable them to burn the Capitol (still under construction) and the White House.
Aug 29
Alexandria, Virginia, formally surrenders to the British military forces.   
Sep 11
The U.S. fleet defeats the British at the Battle of Lake Champlain.    
Sep 12
American troops slow the British advance toward Baltimore at the Battle of North Point. 
Sep 13
British naval forces begin bombarding Fort McHenry in Baltimore but are driven back by American defenders.
Sep 14
Poet Francis Scott Key, observing that Fort McHenry still stands, begin writing Defense of Fort McHenry.The piece will later become the words to The Star-Spangled Banner.
Sep 16
Canadian statesman George-Étienne Cartier (named in honor of King George III) is born in Saint-Antoine-sur-Richelieu (Lower Canada), the seventh child of Jacques Cartier (not the explorer) and his wife Marguerite Paradis.
Oct 4
French painter Jean-Francois Millet is born in Normandy.
Oct 17
A vat of beer at Meux's Brewery in London's St. Giles district ruptures, sending over 360,000 gallons into the streets (the London Beer Flood). At least nine people are killed. 
Oct 19
The first publicly-documented performance of the Star-Spangled Banner anthem takes place at Baltimore's Holliday Street Theater, performed by an actor today known only as "Mr Hardinge".
Dec 2
French author Donatien-Alphonse-Francois Comte de Sade, aka the Marquis de Sade, dies in an insane asylum at the age of 74.
Dec 15
New England Federalists opposed to the War of 1812  gather at Hartford, Connecticut, beginning the Hartford Convention.

New York City police detective and author George S. Mcwatters is born in Kilmarnock, Scotland.

New York State
U.S. naval lieutenant Thomas Macdonough, sailing the USS Saratoga, accompanied by the USS Eagle, captures a British fleet on Lake Champlain.    **    The unnamed hotel in Utica  near the main intersection is now called the York House.

An unknown artist draws the second Clarke's Ferry bridge of the Pennsylvania Main Line Canal.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Brooklyn Historical Society

The Legacy of Jane Jacobs
Thursday, March 16, 6:30 pm
$10 / $5 for BHS Members

In 1960 Jane Jacobs’s book The Death and Life of Great American Cities sent shockwaves through the architecture and planning worlds. Join us as New York Times columnist Ginia Bellafante talks to Matt Tyrnauer, director and producer of the acclaimed documentary Citizen Jane: Battle For the City, Robert Hammond, Co-Founder and Executive Director of Friends of the High Line, and Dr. Samuel Zipp, Associate Professor of American and Urban Studies at Brown University and co-editor of Vital Little Plans: The Short Works of Jane Jacobs, about Jacobs’ extraordinary impact on the urban landscape.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

The City’s handover of the Seaport continues...
unless we stop it.
The next public meeting of Save Our Seaport
will be on Wednesday, February 15, in St. Margaret’s House,
(meeting rooms 1 & 2) 49 Fulton Street
6:30 PM
Please join us 

Save Our Seaport Meeting Tonight

The City’s handover of the Seaport continues …  unless we stop it.
The next public meeting of Save Our Seaport will be on Wednesday, February 15, in St. Margaret’s House, (meeting rooms 1 & 2) 49 Fulton Street

6:30 PM

Please join us 

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Brooklyn Historical Soc. - Dec 3: First American Musical

Happy 200th Birthday, Mr. Wheatley!
Sat, Dec 3, 7 pm – 8:30 pm
$35/$30 for BHS & G-W Members
Reserve your spot

Love musicals? Then you won’t want to miss this musical tribute to the guy who got it all started. William Wheatley (1816 – 1876), Green-Wood permanent resident and stage star, produced The Black Crook, the first American musical. The show was five hours long and ran for a record-breaking 474 performances at the famed Niblo’s Garden. Enjoy songs written, performed, and produced by Wheatley and other Green-Wood residents at this 200th birthday bash!

Monday, September 12, 2016

NYS Thruway / Canal Society Park Opening

NYS Thruway Authority Home
For Immediate Release: 9/12/2016
Contact: Shane Mahar | 
Office of Media Relations and Communications | (518) 471-5300
First of its Kind Project Promotes Tourism on the Historic Erie Canal
The New York State Thruway Authority and Canal Corporation today announced the completion of the Port Byron Old Erie Canal Heritage Park, an attraction for Erie Canal enthusiasts and upstate tourists interested in the history of the Canal and its impact on the economic and commercial development of both New York and the United States.
As part of Governor Cuomo’s “Path Through History” initiative and developed in conjunction with the Canal Society of New York State, the $9.6 million park is the first facility of its kind to offer access directly from the New York State Thruway to a historic site. Visitors can enter the park directly from the eastbound Thruway (I-90) at milepost 308.7 between exits 41 (Waterloo – Clyde – NY Route 414) and 40 (Weedsport - Auburn – NY Route 34), or from NY Route 31 in the Village of Port Byron. Due to the facility’s separate entrance points, visitors will not be able to access the Thruway directly from the Route 31 parking lot and vice versa.
“Governor Cuomo is demonstrating again his commitment to fueling tourism and regional economies in Central New York,” said Thruway Authority Board of Directors Chair and Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney. “The newly constructed Port Byron Old Erie Canal Heritage Park is a result of the collaborative efforts between state and local affiliates and will attract tourists and locals alike to experience the history of the Erie Canal firsthand.”
“This project is a shining example of the fostered cooperation we have cultivated between the Thruway Authority and Canal Corporation,” said Thruway Authority Acting Executive Director Bill Finch. “The Thruway provides access to historic communities throughout upstate New York for millions of motorists each year, and the new Port Byron Old Erie Canal Heritage Park gives visitors a chance to experience the rich history of New York State and the Erie Canal by simply pulling off the Thruway.”
The park gives visitors an authentic glimpse into life on the Erie Canal in the mid-19th and early 20th centuries. Key historical elements include the enlarged Erie Canal Lock 52 and the Erie House Complex, which dates back to 1895 and includes the Erie House Tavern and Hotel, a mule barn, and blacksmith shop. Guided tours provided by the Canal Society of NY, allow visitors a first-hand experience to the facility’s historic structures. The newly constructed Visitor’s Center which is operated by the Finger Lakes Regional Tourism Council offers interactive displays and educational materials. For example, a model lock featured in New York State’s exhibit at Chicago’s Columbian Exposition of 1893 is a centerpiece in the facility.
“The Thruway and Erie Canal have been major economic drivers for New York, both commercially and recreationally, for decades,” said New York State Canal Corporation Director Brian U. Stratton. “With the Canal system spurring hundreds of millions of dollars in tourism-based economic activity each year, it’s clear that people want to experience its history and this park is the perfect way tell those stories.”
“Every day, more and more people are coming to appreciate that New York’s culture and heritage is intimately connected to the development of the Canal system,”said Canal Society of New York State President Kal Wysokowski. The Port Byron Old Erie Canal Heritage Park is the culmination of 20 years of work on behalf of the Canal Society and became a reality because of our strong relationship with the Thruway Authority and Canal Corporation, and we are very proud to now have a place where visitors can reach out and touch history with their hand.”
The entire project was completed by New York contractors and in a three phase sequence. Phase one, completed by Cold Springs Inc. of Akron, NY, included site work, installation of ramps and the parking area. Phase two consisted of the rehabilitation and restoration of various structures and was completed by Bouley Associates of Auburn, NY. The project’s final phase which involved the construction of the new Visitor’s Center with access off the Thruway and Route 31 was completed by Bette & Cring, LLC of Latham, NY. 
“The Thruway Authority and Canal Corporation have given travelers the opportunity to glimpse into a dynamic aspect of New York’s transportation history and we are very proud to have been a part of it,” said President of Bette & Cring Construction Group Peter Bette.
Work completed includes ramps to and from the eastbound New York State Thruway, a parking area, paved trails connecting the parking lot with the historic lock, as well as informational signage. Numerous on-site buildings have been rehabilitated, including the historic Erie House and a newly constructed parking lot accessible from Route 31. Visitors can access historical information at the new Visitor’s Center and walk the grounds on the newly connected park trails. Facility hours of operation are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday through Sunday.  
“We are proud to be a part of the opening of the Erie Canal Heritage Park at Port Byron, and excited to welcome in an attraction that promotes and honors the historical significance of the Erie Canal,” said Mike Linehan, Board Chair of the Finger Lakes Regional Tourism Council. “This is a great new attraction for the Finger Lakes Region, and the FLRTC is honored to be a part of this project in partnership with the New York Canal Society and the New York State Thruway Authority.”
Originally conceived by the Canal Society of New York State, the project has come to life with the support and direction of Governor Cuomo, the New York State Thruway Authority and Canal Corporation.
Motorists can sign up for TRANSAlert emails regarding Thruway traffic conditions at
Follow us on Twitter @ThruwayTraffic and @NYSThruway
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Thruway travelers are encouraged to visit for real-time traffic updates.
To see an interactive map including Google traffic conditions for the Thruway and other roadways in New York State and beyond, go to:
Thruway Highway Advisory Radio (HAR) stations broadcast traffic advisories, road conditions, and safety tips 24-hours-a-day. HAR frequencies can be found at

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Thirty Years War - 1989 magazine article

Review - Article

Came across a story from the 
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC - APRIL 1989 issue while studying the Thirty Years War


August 8, 1980
Wreck of the Swedish battleship Kronan discovered by remote-control television camera at the bottom of the Baltic Sea four miles east of the Swedish island of Oland. After a 30-year search by the article's author Anders Franzén he was hoping for proof of the wreck's identity. His crew raised one of the six-pounder ship's cannon bearing the inscription "VIVE LE ROI -1628. They had found the vessel, that year's largest of Sweden - the KRONAN or CROWN. It had sunk on June 1, 1676. King Karl XI's vessel had been nearly 200 feet long, weighed 2,350 tons and bore 126 guns. She had taken seven years to build. And she was destroyed in less than a minute. Close to 800 men died.

Crewman Anders Spaarfelt was blown sky high by the explosion, flew over two enemy ships and landed safely in the sail of a Swedish vessel.

Back in the 1650s the Danes had vowed to win back the Baltic provinces seized by Sweden.

The Kronan had been launched in 1668 and commissioned in 1672. Four years later she and 600 other Swedish warships were sent into action in the Baltic. Commanding the vessel was Baron Lorentz Creutz, also commanding admiral of the Swedish navy.  

The article's author, a naval historian and engineer had originally begun  searching the waters where the wreckage lay submerged. In 1956 he discovered the wreckage of the Swedish ship Vassa, sunk on her maiden voyage in 1628 out of Stockholm. In 1979 he resumed his search for the Kronan, almost three times the weight of the Vassa. And in 1980 it turned up on his crew's "device" (a remote control television camera, not a cell phone). The Geographic's article recounts some of the vast number of artifacts retrieved from the wreck.

The article ends:
"The recovery of Kronan off Hulterstad . . . is a major event and one of great significance even far outside the realm of marine archaeology . . . . This work and those fateful human events will remind us–despite everything–of our close contact with things past."

There could be no finer epitaph for Kronan.

David Minor