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Adirondack Explorer

Archive for the ‘history’ Category

January, 2014

The Lake Placid Legacy of Willis Wells


Among the folks who played an important role in regional history and personified the traditional Christmas spirit was Willis Wells of Lake Placid. Long before Willis gained attention, his father, Duran, a Peru, New York, native, had become a North Country fixture, operating a peddler’s cart in the post-Civil War years. From the shores of Lake Champlain to the Paul Smith’s area, he supplied homes and farms with the daily needs of life, an important function in those early days when stores visited many of their customers. Duran was somewhat of a showman, adding to his popularity. His arrival at >>More


December, 2013

Ticonderoga Fort Fever Series Begins Jan 12


Fort Ticonderoga’s “Fort Fever” series begins on Sunday, January 12, at 2 pm with “Amazing Things! Highlights from Fort Ticonderoga’s Collections.” Participants will spend an afternoon with Curator of Collections Chris Fox examining some of the rare and important manuscripts, books, and objects in the Fort’s extensive collections. Highlights include the chance to get a close look at the autographs of many of the famous people who are connected with the Fort’s history, objects associated with important people from the French & Indian War and American Revolution, and rare weapons from America’s colonial period. Chris Fox is the Curator of >>More


December, 2013

Crime History: The Final Saga of Albany Jim


For decades one of the nation’s most wanted bank robbers, Albany Jim Brady, was now old, ill, and housed in the Westchester County Almshouse. Newspapermen came to interview him, asking about what were literally his old partners in crime. Animated by the subject, he told with obvious delight the story of a co-conspirator who once attempted a double-cross. The man was Julius Doherty, one of a gang of thieves Brady worked with in the Southwest. With a large bag of stolen money, they were returning to New York when Julius proposed the robbery of a jewelry store in Washington. Easy >>More


December, 2013

The Rise and Fall of Albany Jim Brady


In late 1888, having served a full term of 11 years, Albany Jim Brady was finally released from prison. He quickly hooked up with Sophie Lyons, who had recently left Ned after more than 20 years of marriage. Together Brady and Lyons traveled to Europe, where they were virtually anonymous. Putting their remarkable acting skills to work, they earned a small fortune from various scams, including a Paris heist of $200,000 in diamonds (equal to about $5 million in 2013). Returning to America in 1889, they visited the Detroit International Exposition & Fair and went right to work. Almost immediately, >>More


December, 2013

Warrensburg Children’s Logging Workshop Planned


The Warrensburg Museum of Local History has announced that a Children’s Logging Workshop will be held at the museum on Saturday, December 28 from 1 P.M to 3 P.M. at 3754 Main Street in Warrensburg. Children in grades 4-6 are welcome to participate. Following a brief introduction to the history of the museum children will learn about the local logging industry from logger Dick Nason, a retired Finch Pruyn forester. Personal experience and films will be used to acquaint the children with this rich history. Following the talk children will have an opportunity to build and design a log project for display. >>More


December, 2013

1878: The Vice President and the First Lady Go Fishing


News in 1878 that Vice President William Almon Wheeler of Malone, a recent widower, would be taking First Lady Lucy Hayes fishing in the Adirondacks without her husband, gave New Yorkers something else to talk about besides President Rutherford B.  Hayes’s latest feud with New York’s U.S. Senator Roscoe Conkling. Wheeler had been disappearing into the Adirondacks to fish since he was a poor boy growing up in Malone, the county seat for Franklin County, located on the Canadian border. By the time he became a lawyer, state legislator, bank executive and railroad president, his annual fishing trips became newsworthy. >>More


December, 2013

Winter Events, Lectures At Fort Ticonderoga


Fort Ticonderoga’s “Fort Fever Series” returns this winter with monthly programs January through April 2014. Programs take place on Sunday afternoons at 2:00 in the Deborah Clarke Mars Education Center. The cost for each program is $10 per person and will be collected at the door; free for members of the Friends of Fort Ticonderoga. January 12th, “Amazing Things! Highlights from Fort Ticonderoga’s Collections”—Spend an afternoon with Curator of Collections Chris Fox examining some of the rare and important manuscripts, books, and objects in the Fort’s extensive collections. Highlights include the chance to get a close look at the autographs >>More


December, 2013

The Saga of Albany Jim (Part 3)


After his third prison escape in 14 months, Albany Jim Brady worked extra hard at avoiding lawmen. But he also stayed busy and was a suspect in several additional crimes: the robbery of New York City’s Metropolis Bank in early 1877; a heist of the bank in Keeseville, New York, a short time later; and hitting the Sixth National Bank in April of that year, a job that again smacked of Brady’s boldness: drilling upward into an office, accessing the vaults, and completing the theft during daylight hours. Perhaps it was such nervy and audacious robberies, year after year, that >>More


December, 2013

Olympic Museum Exhibit Features Skater Sonja Henie


The Lake Placid Olympic Museum, located in the Olympic Center in Lake Placid, has announced the opening of their new, permanent exhibit, “Sonja Henie: Perfection on Ice.” Sonja Henie won more Olympic and World titles than any other ladies figure skater, to include three Olympic crowns and six European championship titles. Her innovative skating techniques and glamorous demeanor transformed the sport permanently and confirmed its acceptance as a legitimate sport in the Olympic Winter Games. To celebrate the exhibit, a reception will be held at the Lake Placid Olympic Museum on Friday, Dec. 27, from 8 -10 p.m. Scheduled to >>More


December, 2013

Osgood Pond Great Camp Tapped for NY, National Registers


The New York State Board for Historic Preservation recommended the addition of 33 properties, resources and districts to the State and National Registers of Historic Places. Among the properties slated for inclusion are Northbrook Lodge on Osgood Pond near Paul Smiths in Brighton, NY and the John Losee House, in Watertown. The State and National Registers are the official lists of buildings, structures, districts, landscapes, objects and sites significant in the history, architecture, archeology and culture of New York State and the nation. Said to be the the first parcel of land sold on Osgood Pond, Northbrook Lodge was built >>More