May 1, 2004

Assessments, laurels, darts

This morning's Ithaca Journal reports that assessments are going to be up around 11% county-wide, and "the largest assessment increases occurred in Enfield (21 percent), Ulysses (14.83 percent), and Newfield (13.47 percent)." The City and Town of Ithaca were both slightly above the average, but they don't provide data for Dryden. They mention County Legislator Michael Lane's proposal to shift assessments to every three years.

On the Opinion page, there are laurels to Dryden and darts from Dryden. Dryden businesses Eagle Broadcasting, Arnold's Gifts and Flowers of Dryden, and Googer's Bakery and Coffee Shop get a laurel for helping the 2004 4-H Cascadilla Creek Duck Race. Joe Jay of Dryden sends a dart to Ithaca resident W. Pearce Brown for his letter last week about the president's press conference.

The Ithaca Journal is also looking for residents interested in this year's election, and taking applications from people interested in being part of their collection of "representative households" through November.

There's also a reminder of today's barbecue at the Varna Community Center.

Posted by simon at 10:06 AM Comment

Varna BBQ overwhelmed; first sell-out in six years

After six years of declining barbecue chicken sales, the Varna Community Association's barbecue today was overwhelmed by people seeking chicken for take-out. The VCA prepared three hundred half-chickens, all of which were sold to customers some of whom were made impatient by the wait. Later on, some customers had to be turned away when the chicken was gone.

A line for chicken
A line for chicken

I spent most of the afternoon at the barbecue pit, where Bill Mahler and Jeff Potter were doing all they could to encourage the chicken to cook quickly.

People waiting and chicken cooking
People waiting and chicken cooking

While forecasts earlier this week, even up to last night, had called for rain, the weather held and the sun shone all day, with just a few clouds. Only six people ate their barbecue at the center. All the other orders were for take-out.

Posted by simon at 7:03 PM Comment

May 2, 2004

Breaking down the County Comprehensive Plan

While the Draft Tompkins County Comprehensive Plan contains a lot of information, it's pretty enormous overall. They've broken it down into pieces by section, but even those sections are pretty large. Using Adobe Acrobat, I've broken it into smaller pieces and "refried" those pieces so that their file sizes are small, and broken a few maps out as separate files.

The refried versions tend to have pixelated pictures and charts, but they're still quite readable, and the main text is fine.

Update: The list of action items is also a good way to look through the plan.

Posted by simon at 11:13 AM Comment

Coming up to the church

Continuing west through Varna from the last set of houses, the next three buildings bring us to Varna United Methodist Church.

967 Dryden Road
967 Dryden Road (map)

966 Dryden Road
966 Dryden Road (map)

965 Dryden Road, Varna United Methodist Church
965 Dryden Road, Varna United Methodist Church (map)

Posted by simon at 12:29 PM Comment

County Planning comes to Dryden

As part of the process for the Tompkins County Comprehensive Plan, the Planning Department held an open house and meeting on Thursday at the Dryden Town Hall.

The open house started at three, with displays up and Deputy Commissioner of Planning Joan Jurkowich and Planning Analyst Tom Mank taking questions from visitors. Tom Hatfield of the Town of Dryden Planning Board was there at six when I arrived, and more people arrived as the seven o'clock presentation grew nearer.

Displays at the open house
Displays at the open house

Joan Jurkowich and Heather Filiberto talk with visitors
Deputy Commissioner of Planning Joan Jurkowich and Senior Planner Heather Filiberto talk with visitors

The presentation itself was, as the planners warned, the same talk they had given at other events, including the one given in Varna in March. Senior Planner Heather Filiberto walked through the various pieces of the plan, and provided some extra Dryden-specific detail. For example, the median rental in the county costs $611 a month, but $544 in the Town of Dryden, $530 if students are excluded. Only 54% of households in the county own their own homes, but 68% of Town of Dryden residents do, and 61% in both the Village of Dryden and Village of Freeville. 22% of Town residents are paying more than 30% of their income for housing, and 26% of residents of the Villages of Dryden and Freeville are in that situation. (County-wide, the number is closer to 30% of households.)

Heather Filiberto presents
Senior Planner Heather Filiberto presents the draft plan

Dryden also has lots of land in its northeast corner considered excellent farmland, and portions of eight of the fourteen "Natural Features Focus Areas".

Natural Features in Dryden
Natural Features Focus Areas in Dryden (1 - Cascadilla Creek, 2 - Fall Creek, 4 - Owasco Inlet, 6 - Six Mile Creek, 8 - The Fens, 9 - The Forest Lands, 12 - Wetlands Complex North, 13 - Wetlands Complex South.)

Along the way, Filiberto also discussed action items, the tasks the plan proposes to move forward on once the plan is approved, a fiscal impact analysis of the plan is conducted, and an implementation plan is developed. The action item list is probably the best place to get a perspective on what this plan will do. As land use decisions remain in the hands of municipalities - towns, villages, and the City of Ithaca - the county plan is more about regional integration and studies than about deciding where to put houses and factories.

County Legislator Martha Robertson asked if the County had seen or looked at the Town of Dryden's Draft Comprehensive Plan. Filiberto replied that they had seen it, but they can't really use it until it's stable and formally adopted. David Weinstein, of the Dryden Planning Board, suggested that one area where the county could help municipalities with their plans was to discuss development at the edges, where municipal boundaries meet.

Dryden Planning Board Chair Barbara Caldwell noted that both the town and the county were looking into ways to strengthen hamlets, but that it was difficult to do that when roads cut through them. Filiberto suggested that they would be looking for ways to balance transportation needs with the needs of the people living on those roads, and Joan Jurkowich added that the Vital Communities Initiative, a separate project, was looking at "how to preserve road function while maintaining communities." David Weinstein noted that the balance was hard to maintain when the state's primary interest seems to be maximizing traffic flow.

Ross Gerbasi expressed concern that while the plan noted the natural beauty of Tompkins County, he was worried about how "to encourage keeping what we have rather than losing the little bit we have left." He pointed out the steady disappearance of Cayuga Lake views from the Ithaca shoreline, as more buildings have gone up and Cornell now plans a hotel. He asked if elevated viewing platforms were in the works, and Joan Jurkowich noted that there would actually be some elevated scenic views from the scenic byway being put in around the lake.

David Weinstein also asked why making the southern end of Cayuga Lake swimmable - like Seneca Lake at Watkins Glen still is - wasn't part of the plan. Joyce Gerbasi pointed out that part of the reason Watkins Glen still had swimming was that they hadn't filled in their swamps and built on them, as Ithaca had done. Gerbasi was concerned about water quality as well, and wanted to know if there were plans to help with that. Filiberto and Jurkowich pointed to action items regarding septic systems.

Martha Robertson also asked if the Planning Department had any thoughts on their preferred population for the county, and housing implications. Joan Jurkowich said that they hadn't done that, but that it would take 2600 new housing units just to address projected growth here without attempting to build new housing here to reduce in-commuting. David Weinstein also asked if the county had further plans to help renovate older housing stock. The planners pointed to Better Housing of Tompkins County, which does some of that work but is no longer affiliated with the County.

David Weinstein asked about the focus on infill development at existing nodes and what that might mean. Heather Filiberto said they were looking at disused buildings, empty parking lots, and empty lots primarily. Weinstein also asked about the possibility of contention between keeping land for farming and using land for development, especially around existing villages. Joan Jurkowich said there were some land use scenarios under development to examine those kinds of issues. There was also some discussion of a study done by a course at Cornell's Department of City and Regional Planning led by Professor Rolf Pendall.

I asked that when they conduct the studies listed in the action items that they make the results as detailed as possible, so readers can find details on the state of their town or village, not just general pictures of the state of the county.

Posted by simon at 12:41 PM Comment

Improvements in the 1860s

Transportation issues looked a lot different in 1869, when the railroads first came to Dryden. In this tale of a period of prosperity in Dryden, George Goodrich describes a period when everything was in flux, and seemed, at least to people like Goodrich, to provide enormous opportunity.

(This chapter complements a similar chapter on the Village of Dryden in the same period very well. Also, in case you're wondering if Goodrich only saw the war as a period of prosperity, he didn't. I'm working on his chapters on the Civil War and hope to post them on Memorial Day weekend.)

Chapter XX.

Internal Improvements.

While the period of the war involved great loss of life and property to the North as well as to the South, it was, to our section of the country, in some respects a time of unusual prosperity. The money which was freely paid out by the government for services and supplies came into ready circulation among the people, and the prices of everything went up to high figures, so that those people who remained at home and formed the producing class were able to secure enormous prices for their products. Wheat brought $2.50 per bushel; wool one dollar per pound; while butter was sold for sixty cents and at some times even more than that per pound. Real estate, as well as other property, was booming, and everybody holding property of any kind was agreeable surprised upon finding himself richer than he had previously imagined himself to be. This increase in wealth was in a measure imaginary, and, to some extent at least, due to a depreciated currency by which the value of things was then estimated. When the currency was brought up to a par value with gold, some time after the close of the war, the delusion began to be dispelled, and the value of property has ever since then seemed to depreciate.

Still there were people during the war, as there always have been and always will be, who were continually complaining of the hard times, and suggesting that if ever the war should cease then they might accomplish something, while those who then went to work and made their efforts productive, accumulated property more rapidly than it was possible to do in the same length of time either before or since that period.

The apparent prosperity which then prevailed in business matters stimulated local enterprises, and the first railroad to furnish means of transportation in the town, at first known as the Southern Central, was opened for travel between Owego and Auburn in the year 1869. Such a project had long been dreamed of and hoped for by the people of the town, and we find on an old map of Tompkins county published in 1838, a copy of which is in the possession of Dr. Mary Briggs of Dryden village, a railway proposed from Ithaca to Auburn by way of Etna and Freeville, over almost the same route now occupied by the branches of the Lehigh Valley. The old Ithaca and Cortland railroad, known in those days as the "Shoo Fly," was opened as far as Cortland running diagonally through the centre of the town of Dryden, in 1871. A great effort was made by and in behalf of Dryden people, especially those living in and about Dryden village, to secure the construction of the Southern Central. Many other towns along the proposed line were bonded to furnish means with which to construct it, but the town of Dryden was never obligated in that way. The citizens, however, believed that only by very liberal subscriptions to the stock of the company could the road be secured, and a subscription amounting to nearly two hundred thousand dollars was obtained from the people, only about half of which materialized. Many under the strong influence brought to bear upon them and out of a sense of duty to the public interests of the town, agreed to take more stock than they afterwards felt able to pay for, and subsequent developments indicated that the road would finally have been built without so great a sacrifice on the part of the people. Those towns, however, which bonded themselves fared the worst, for their bonds were paid when times were harder and property had greatly depreciated in value. The Midland Railroad Company projected a road in this period from Freeville to Auburn by way of West Dryden and Lansing, which was not completed until 1880, and after being operated for about ten years was absorbed by the Lehigh Valley Company and discontinued. The telegraph accompanied the railroads, or in the case of the Southern Central preceded it by a few years. Thus the town from being wholly destitute of railroad privileges up to 1869, has ever since been traversed by at least two lines of railroad, crossing each other at nearly right angles near the centre of the township, providing five railroad and telegraph stations within its borders.

Near the end of this period, and about the year 1870, attention was called to the fact that Dryden was holding rather more than her full share (in fact nearly all) of the political honors of the county. It so happened at that time that Hon. Richard Marvin, as Supreme Court Justice, then residing in Chautauqua county but brought up as a Dryden boy, was assigned to hold a term of court at Ithaca. Mills Van Valkenburg was then serving as county judge and surrogate, elected from Dryden; Horace L. Root was serving as sheriff, as well as Thomas J. McElheny as county clerk, both elected from Dryden; while Benjamin F. Squires, the court crier had formerly been a Dryden merchant. With Milo Goodrich, of Dryden, then a member of congress from this district and a prominent figure at the bar of that court it was conceded that for a country town Dryden then had a claim upon at least her full share of the offices of that court and of the county.

Goodrich, George B. The Centennial History of the Town of Dryden, 1797-1897. Dryden: Dryden Herald Steam Printing House, 1898. Reprinted 1993 by the Dryden Historical Society. Pages 68-9.

(The Dryden Historical Society, which sells this book, may be reached at 607-844-9209.)

Posted by simon at 6:28 PM Comment

May 3, 2004

SPCA facilities, Stone Circle School

Today's Dryden news in the Ithaca Journal is friendly stuff. The Journal takes a look at the new SPCA building on Hanshaw Road, which is nearing completion. It sounds like an enormous change from the old building, which will still be used for overflow and an infirmary. The new building will be opening June 5. I also missed an article Friday by SPCA Director Nathan Winograd on the local SPCA's leadership in the no-kill shelter movement.

There's a letter on Waldorf schools from the people at Stone Circle School, "the Waldorf-inspired school that exists now in an historic schoolhouse on Turkey Hill Road" (map). In looking around for information on the school, I found this on the stone circle itself.

Looking beyond the Town, there's a story on the Ithaca school board elections, as well as a piece on Tompkins County's plans for dealing with West Nile Virus this summer.

Posted by simon at 7:43 AM Comment

Moving wires, removing poles

NYSEG was busy across the street today. They put in new poles last year, but left the old ones in place until they got around to moving the wires. They did some today, and will no doubt being doing more tomorrow.

Lifting the pole out
Lifting the pole out

Tilting the pole down
Tilting the pole down

Correction: That appears to be a Verizon truck, not a NYSEG truck. NYSEG put in the poles last year, though.

Posted by simon at 5:02 PM Comment

May 4, 2004

Draft, abuse prevention, schools

The only Dryden-specific item in today's Ithaca Journal is a letter to the editor about the prospect of a draft from Ellen Schmidt of the Town of Dryden.

In broader county news, the Journal covers a presentation by Meredith Wiley, the state director of Fight Crime: Invest in Kids, in which she urged to county to focus more resources on child abuse prevention.

In the Ithaca City School District, students won 45 trophies at the New York State Technology Student Association conference, while school budget hearings are set for tonight.

Posted by simon at 8:32 AM Comment

West of the church

Continuing west from Varna United Methodist Church there are these four buildings.

962 Dryden Road
962 Dryden Road (map)

960 Dryden Road
960 Dryden Road (map)

959 Dryden Road
959 Dryden Road (map)

959 Dryden Road
959 Dryden Road, house 2 (map)

The last two buildings apparently share the number 959 across a group of apartments.

Posted by simon at 6:05 PM Comment

Living wage, minimum wage discussion

A small group of Dryden residents met with Carl Feuer and Pete Meyers of the Tompkins County Living Wage Coalition at Martha Ferger's home in the Village of Dryden Tuesday night.

The main topic of conversation was movement on living wage issues, particularly bills in the New York State Senate and Assembly on increasing the minimum wage. The Assembly has passed a bill (A.9710), while the Senate has a bill (S3291-B) under consideration. Both bills would raise the minimum wage in the state to $7.10/hour from the current $5.15/hour over a two year period, though the Senate's bill takes an extra six months to reach $7.10.

Neighboring states Connecticut ($7.10) and Vermont ($7.00), along with Massachusetts ($6.75) and Rhode Island ($6.75), already have minimum wages above the federal minimum of $5.15. At $5.15 an hour, a full-time worker earns $10,712 a year. The federal minimum hasn't increased since 1997.

There was some discussion of a report from the Fiscal Policy Institute, which found that:

"employment growth (all nonfarm employment and retail employment) in states with a higher minimum wage than the federal minimum has performed at least as favorably as in states where the $5.15 federal minimum prevails. That is, state minimum wages higher than the federal minimum wages have not adversely affect employment growth over the past few years. This conclusion holds for both the expansion phase of the economy the years 1998 through 2000 as well as the years of recession and extraordinarily slow growth since then (2001 through 2003)."

The full report goes into much greater detail. An earlier report found that 2900 people in Tompkins County, 6.2% of the workforce, would benefit directly from an increase in the wage to $7.00, while another 2100 people would likely benefit as their wages were increased to avoid wage compression. (Businesses tend to increase salaries that are already above the minimum wage to preserve distinctions between pay levels.)

While $7.10 is still a long way from the $8.68 that Alternatives Federal Credit Union has calculated as a living wage for Tompkins County, it's also a big improvement on $5.15. Feuer reported that the Tompkins County Chamber of Commerce had just voted to support the Senate bill increasing the minimum wage, and most of the attention seems to be on the Senate right now. A majority of senators may in fact support the bill, but Senate Majority Leader Joseph Bruno hasn't scheduled a vote.

State Senator James Seward, whose district includes the Town of Dryden, has apparently written in letters that he supports an increase in the minimum wage but would prefer to see it done at the federal level. (That sounds gentler than his positions in this article, though that was two years ago.) Washington seems unlikely to act under its current leadership.

If you have opinions on this subject, please contact Senator Seward at:

Senator James Seward
41 Main Street
Oneonta, NY 13820
(607) 432 5524
(518) 455 3131

The group is also planning to have letter-writing and telephoning sessions in Dryden and Freeville in May.

Posted by simon at 9:52 PM Comment

May 5, 2004

Poverty in Dryden, county budget

The articles in this week's Our Towns on Dryden and Groton are all about Groton. (Last week was largely Dryden.)

There is a sidebar in the print edition with some statistics on families living on incomes below poverty level in Dryden, though. The figures given are 4.76% for families composed of a woman with children, 1.45% for couples with children and 0.78% for men with children. It also lists 0.46% for couples without children, 0.12% for women without children, and a flat 0% for men without children.

The Journal's data looks very different from the data I could find at the Census Bureau for Town of Dryden individuals, which suggests that 12% of Dryden residents were living below the poverty level in 2000, or Town of Dryden families. (Similar data is available for Village of Dryden individuals, Village of Dryden families, Village of Freeville individuals, and Village of Freeville families.)

I'm not sure how they (or Claritas, which they cite) are calculating this - perhaps it means, for example, that 4.76% of Dryden's families are composed of women with children and below the poverty line - but it looks from census data that 33.5% of women with children in the Town of Dryden live below the poverty line. The calculations used by the Journal may be accurate, but it's not all clear in the graphic what the resulting numbers mean.

Also, it's worth noting that the federal definition of poverty level used for these statistics is well below the local calculations for a living wage.

The Briefly in Dryden section isn't online today for some reason. Exactly like last week's, it notes that absentee ballots are available for Dryden School Board elections and that Dairy Days organizers are looking for volunteers.

In county news, legislators voted 12-2 to support a limit of a 3% tax levy increase for the coming year. The Journal quotes County Legislator Michael Lane as saying "This sends exactly the right message to the people in the community who are concerned about taxes, concerned about assessments and concerned about services. We are hearing how much the tax burden is affecting their daily lives." Legislator Martha Robertson voted for it, and George Totman had left the meeting before the vote. The decision will mean a cut in services, and depends to some extent on what happens at the state level:

Whicher said if financial projections hold true, the target is a reachable goal. If things change in the next few months, including how the state budget will affect the county, Whicher said he will come back to the Legislature and tell them a 3 percent target levy is impossible.
"The sand can shift very quickly," he said.
The resolution that sets the target also include language suggesting that the county maintain its work force at or below current levels in 2005 and 2006, and charges Whicher to recommend further consolidations of departments and functions where opportunities exist.
Posted by simon at 9:23 AM Comment

County Natural Resources Inventory available

Tompkins County has published its 2001 Natural Resources Inventory on its web site. The Inventory includes:

  • water bodies
  • watersheds
  • aquifers
  • wetlands
  • flood hazard areas
  • slopes and topography
  • soils
  • bedrock geology
  • surface geology
  • unique natural areas
  • state parks, forests, and wildlife management areas
  • Tompkins County reforestry lands
  • important bird areas
  • natural heritage sites
  • critical environmental areas, national natural landmarks, and New York State recreational rivers
  • Finger Lakes Land Trust and Nature Conservancy preserves, conservation easements, and Cornell natural areas
  • aerial photographs
  • digital orthographic quarter quadrangles
  • land use and land cover

Most of the sections have maps, though the last three only really have samples. I figured out, for instance, that the forest across the street from me is part of the Cornell Monkey Run Natural Area. There's an amazing amount of information here.

The county is even offering classes in using the inventory. Sessions are at TC3's space on the Ithaca Commons, room 105. Classes are Tuesday, May 11th, at 7pm, Wednesday, May 19th, at 10am, and Thursday, June 3rd, at 2 pm.

Posted by simon at 8:12 PM Comment

Schools, town news in The Shopper

There's a new Dryden Board Briefs in this week's issue of The Shopper, covering the April 27th meeting. (They're not yet posted on their site.) There's also an announcement about getting absentee ballots for the May 18th Board Elections, and a note that the "Dryden Central School District Office will be moving to its new location at the Middle School effective May 17, 2004."

Not from the school district, but related to the election, is an advertisement for Paul Lutwak, running for the school board.

There are also some town notices:

  • There will be a scrap metal cleanup with a dumpster at the Dryden Highway Department (map). They'll take scrap metal from May 3rd to May 30th, Monday through Thursday 7am-2pm and Fridays 7am-11am.
  • The Town will also be having a chipping day on May 8th, rain or shine from 8am to 4pm. Twigs and small branches will be accepted at a Johnson Road site (map). The notice says to "bring your own containers if you want to take chips with you."
  • The Town Highway Department is selling off a 2002 Silverado 2500HD 4WD pickup truck with 18,800 miles on it and a 2002 John Deere 425 lawn tractor through sealed bid auctions running through May 21st. Minimum bid on the truck is $19,500 and minimum bid on the tractor is $5,500.
Posted by simon at 9:31 PM Comment

May 6, 2004

Lane on energy and costs

Today's Ithaca Journal reports that the county legislature's Planning, Development and Environmental Quality Committee tabled a motion calling for the county to get 5% of its energy from renewable sources by 2008. The reason: unknown costs.

Though Senior Planner Heather Filiberto said that "The costs are almost competitive with the purchase of fossil fuels," the proposal apparently didn't have hard figures. County Legislator Mike Lane asked for details, saying:

"This is going to raise the county's energy bill," Lane said. "I would like to see those facts before it is a county policy."

Filiberto is to return in June and the proposal will be considered then. The proposal came from the county's Environmental Management Council and its Planning Department.

The Journal also includes an article on racial conflicts in the Ithaca school district, and an letter from Dryden resident Bruce Lane endorsing fellow Dryden resident David Lee's run for the Ithaca school board.

Posted by simon at 8:07 AM Comment

Courier looks at youth

This week's Dryden Courier cover stories look at what kids are doing in Dryden. There's an appreciative article on the Dryden High School a cappella group Beyond Measure's recent performance at Dryden Jazz Night. It also takes a look at the archery program at Klein's Archery, "the first program offered by the town's new recreation department that was run by a for-profit business."

There's also a report in Tricia Edgecomb's "Mind Over Matters" column about the "Bullying or Being Bullied" presentation Dr. James Garbarino gave to Dryden parents on April 13th. I especially like this quote from Superintendent Patricia Archambault:

"Character education is not a program; it's a way of life."

Garbarino apparently also spent March 30th talking to students at both the middle school and the high school, as well as giving a faculty workshop.

Posted by simon at 5:12 PM Comment

Central Varna

Two of the last few Varna buildings we looked at shared an address and that pattern continues for the next one.

957 Dryden Road
957 Dryden Road (map)

957 Dryden Road, back building
957 Dryden Road, C

956 Dryden Road
956 Dryden Road (map)

Posted by simon at 5:26 PM Comment

Six months

When I put up my first posting here six months ago, I didn't really have any idea what I was getting into. I wasn't sure there would be enough news for stories every day, and didn't know if people would actually be interested in it.

At this point it's clear that there's more than enough going on in Dryden for stories every day. There is an incredible amount happening here, and only a fraction of it can make the paper. Some of it is routine, but even in the routine there's a depth I wouldn't have guessed before.

It's also clear that at least some people are interested in reading it. Traffic has increased slowly but consistently since I put the site up, and a good proportion of it seems to be local, not just driven by search engines or their spiders looking for new content.

It's also a good time to point out a few things about the site. Looking at my logs, it doesn't seem like many people have realized that you can click on all the photos here and see a larger version of the same picture. You can, if you like, use those pictures for non-commercial projects under the terms for this site. Also, you can change the size of the text for this site if you'd like a larger or smaller version of it.

I'm happy to reach six months, and plan to keep going.

Posted by simon at 5:42 PM Comment

May 7, 2004

Meetings for May

The Town of Dryden posted its meeting schedule for May, and I seem to be a little late getting to it.

Unless otherwise noted, all meetings listed here are at the Dryden Town Hall (map).

Posted by simon at 8:22 AM Comment

Freese Road bridge stays closed

Today's online Ithaca Journal was late, but it continues to be a quiet week for Dryden in any case.

In Dryden-specific news, Freese Road bridge will be closed yet another week, to Thursday, May 13.

There's also a piece on the county's possible costs for boarding prisoners out if it loses its two variances.

Posted by simon at 12:33 PM Comment

May 8, 2004

School candidates, Ithaca Produce, more

After a quiet week, today's Ithaca Journal is bursting with Dryden news.

The Journal profiles the four candidates running for the Dryden School Board: Margaret DeGaetano, Paul Lutwak, Russ Kowalski, and Anderson Young.

Paul Lutwak also has a letter to the editor about the Journal's recent supplement containing school test scores. I had posted some expenditure data from it but refrained from doing more because of the volume of data. Lutwak and previous letter-writer Adam Bauchner are right to question the meaningfulness of that data.

Dryden Superintendent Pat Archambault gives a laurel to the cast and crew of Dryden Middle School's Fiddler on the Roof, Jr. There is also a letter from Dryden resident Peter Davies supporting Dryden resident David Lee and Ithaca resident Allen Lambert for the Ithaca School Board.

Moving away from schools, Ithaca Produce is looking to the Tompkins County Industrial Development Agency for tax breaks to expand by twelve employees by moving from one part of Dryden (Route 13) to another (Johnson Road). Ithaca Produce pays employees living wages by the county's standards, and the move would take their 24-hour trucking from a location in close contact with surrounding residents to a more isolated location that still has good access to the highway. They received preliminary approval.

There's also a story on the ever-growing cost of Medicaid and its impact on the county budget, where it consumes a third of property tax revenue, over $10 million. Home health care and nursing home costs are the largest expense.

Posted by simon at 8:22 AM Comment


While I've been working on a piece that explains the relationships between state, county, town, and village governments, I've also been spending a lot more time in the Village of Dryden. (I'm regularly there while collecting materials for this site.) I have to admit that I've developed a certain amount of jealousy for things the Villages of Dryden and Freeville have which simply aren't available in the rest of the town.

First and foremost, having a village makes decision-making local. The residents of the Village of Dryden don't have to hope that the Town of Dryden will see things their way when it comes to planning or roads, two of the harder issues in the town. They still have a voice in town government, and town government still affects them, but they can make decisions based on what's right for their area, and have access to resources to implement those decisions. (Towns and villages can also cooperate on planning, as this article on Groton's planning process demonstrates.)

The Villages also have some control over traffic through their areas. Route 13 on the western edge of the Village may feel like the road was built for 45 or 55 mph, but the Village police make certain it stays at 30. Police cars have a way of reminding motorists to pay close attention to their driving. A tremendous amount of traffic passes through the villages of Dryden and Freeville every day, but the villages have a much stronger opportunity to set the rules for that than the town does.

In addition to police, villages can also manage their own fire services. In Dryden, the villages contribute to their 'home' fire companies (Neptune and W.B. Strong), which also participate in the town fire district.

Villages can also create shared community places - parks and village halls. It's still not always easy to create these things, but villages come with mechanisms for funding them. It helps when villages have a natural center area, a big advantage I think Dryden has, for instance, over Lansing, but a village hall drives traffic (and perhaps community) to some extent.

I recognize that all of these things come with costs, and that community needs to come before incorporation. I don't plan to move to a village for those benefits (I like my house and where we live), but it's hard not to admire them.

Posted by simon at 9:43 AM Comment

May 9, 2004

Approaching the Community Center

I'll be heading to the Varna Community Center (map) in a few minutes to work on this morning's pancake breakfast. Getting there, I'll be passing the last set of houses pictured here, and then these.

953 Dryden Road
953 Dryden Road (map)

952 Dryden Road, back building
952 Dryden Road (map)

949 Dryden Road
949 Dryden Road (map)

Posted by simon at 7:03 AM Comment

Dryden in the 1840s

George Goodrich covers a lot of territory in this chapter, from the slaves held in Dryden to the quality of liquor and its use in raising church walls to the appearance of mineral coal, steam engines, and sewing machines in Dryden.

Chapter XVI.

Review of the Development Period.

We have failed to mention the war with Mexico, which occurred during this period from 1846 to 1848, resulting in the addition to our country of a vast amount of western territory, including California. The war did not excite great interest in the state of New York, and so far as we can learn no organized effort was made in Dryden to promote it, and no volunteers, except perhaps a few scattering adventurers, went from Dryden to engage in it. It was a Southern measure, not over popular at that time in the North, although in its results it proved to be important and highly beneficial to the country at large.

This was an era of prosperity in which the value of real estate and other property maintained a healthy improvement. As the water power used by the saw-mills ceased to be required for that purpose on account of the rapidly decreasing supply of saw logs, attention was given to other kinds of manufacturing to which these water powers were adapted; and hence many of the mills and factories of the town date back to this period.

During this time stoves to a great extent took the place of the old-fashioned fireplaces, and tallow candles furnished the means of house lighting in the evening, supplemented toward the end of this period by sperm oil lamps and an explosive burning fluid compounded of camphine and alcohol.

The anti-slavery movement developed largely during this time. The census of 1820 shows that there were then held in the county of Tompkins fifty slaves, of whom thirty-two were held in the town of Caroline, nine in the town of Hector, six in the town of Danby and three in Ulysses (then including Ithaca), but none were then held in the towns of Dryden, Groton or Lansing. In the preliminary draft of this chapter we said that we found no evidence that negro slavery ever existed in the town of Dryden. We had learned that Edward Griswold kept in his family an old negro by the name of Jack O'Liney, who had once been a slave, but who seems to have been harbored by Mr. Griswold as a subject of charity. Further investigation develops the fact that Aaron Lacy, who came to Dryden in 1799, while he resided on the Stickles corner in Willow Glen, bought and kept as a domestic servant, a slave girl by the name of Ann Wisner, remembered by some of the older people as "Black Ann," who was sent to school by her master in the Willow Glen district in those early years, and who, after her emancipation moved to Ithaca and has since then frequently visited the family of her former master. In the will of Aaron Lacy dated in the year 1826 and recorded in the surrogate's office of Tompkins county in book B, page 69, this slave girl is bequeathed to his widow, Eliza Lacy. Perhaps other slaves were held in Dryden, but we learn of no others, and slavery was abolished in the whole state of New York early in this period, July 4, 1827.

A great change in the customs in regard to the use of alcoholic and spirituous liquors took place during this time. As we have seen, in 1824 there were five distilleries of whiskey in operation in the town and we are told that everybody in those days made use of it. Intoxicating liquor of some sort was considered a necessity to be furnished at every raising of the frame of a new building, and no farmer could commence haying without providing a supply of strong drink for the use of himself and his help during this laborious operation in those times. Tradition says that for the raising of the frame of the Presbyterian church edifice in Dryden village, which occupied a week in the year 1819, a large amount of whiskey was supplied to the volunteer workmen. Whether, as is sometimes claimed by old people, the whiskey of those days was so pure that it had none of the pernicious effects which attend the intemperate use of the modern article of the same name, is fortunately not within the province of history to determine.

In reviewing the first fifty years of Dryden's inhabitation we cannot but be impressed with the great progress and improvements which had been made, and doubtless the inhabitants of 1847 considered that the limit of progress in art and science had then almost been reached, and that but few improvements could be expected in the future. Yet at that time not a single mowing machine, reaper or family sewing machine had ever been brought into the township, the first of the former, an Emory mower, having been brought into town by Elias W. Cady in 1850, and of the latter was a Grover & Baker sewing machine presented to Mrs. John E. McElheny by her brother, Volney Aldrich, of New York, in about 1857, the cost of which was one hundred thirty dollars. At that time people came from as far as West Dryden to see a machine which could "actually sew," and that same machine is still in active use.

Up to this time not a single bushel of mineral coal ("stone coal" as it was called in those days) had ever been introduced, the first, as we learn, being a barrel of blacksmith's coal brought as an experiment by Obed Lindsey and Jim Patterson in 1850. Kerosene oil had then never been heard of, and it was some time before "stone coal" was used here for heating purposes, the term "coal" then being universally applied to charcoal, which was used much more commonly than now.

We believe we are safe in stating that up to this time not a single steam engine, either stationary or portable, had ever been introduced into the town except where the D. L. & W. R. R. now crosses the south-west corner. On that old road in 1840 it was attempted to use the first locomotive, but without success until it was sent back to Schenectady to be enlarged and improved. When returned it was so heavy that it wrecked one of the bridges and was abandoned until about 1847, when steam power first became a practical success on this old line of railroad.

In concluding this chapter we quote two stanzas from a centennial poem written by a lady who was born in our adjoining county of Cortland and who is a relative of the Hammond family in Dryden, as follows:

"Where women sat beside their looms,
A hundred years ago,
And wove in cloth in threads they spun
Of linen, wool, and tow,
Now great King Steam, in workshops large,
Like some old giant elf,
Gets up with angry puff and roar
And does the work himself.
"The poor, old stage coach lumbered on,
A hundred years ago,
O'er rugged roads and mountains steep,
Its progress was but slow;
Now, through the mountain's heart, and o'er
Deep chasms, yawning wide,
With iron steeds, in palace cars,
How fearlessly we ride." - Luranah Hammond

Goodrich, George B. The Centennial History of the Town of Dryden, 1797-1897. Dryden: Dryden Herald Steam Printing House, 1898. Reprinted 1993 by the Dryden Historical Society. Pages 47-49.

(The Dryden Historical Society, which sells this book, may be reached at 607-844-9209.)

Posted by simon at 4:50 PM Comment

May 10, 2004

Lehigh Valley Memories

Next Monday night, the Dryden Town Historical Society will be hosting a presentation that should interest anyone who wants to know more about the trains that used to run through the Town of Dryden.

Daniel Armitage grew up in Freeville, NY, with a train station in his backyard. From the age of five he spent a lot of time with people like Ken Rice, the Station Master. Over the years he became friends with all of the train crews and, in 1963, got his first ride in a locomotive with engineer Nick Fiske. It wasn't long before every crewman on the Buffalo Division of the Lehigh Valley Railroad knew about the "kid from Freeville" and, as he got older, he was allowed to ride almost anytime and anywhere he wanted.
This idyllic childhood lasted until the demise of the Lehigh Valley in 1976. Mr. Armitage enjoys sharing his memories and has amassed a large collection of slides documenting the railroad. Join the Dryden Town Historical Society on Monday, May 17, 2004 in the Dryden Village Hall (map) for "Lehigh Valley Memories." The evening will begin at 7 PM with the Annual Meeting followed by the featured program at 7:30 PM. Anyone who loves railroads will enjoy this program and anyone with memories of their own railroading experiences that they'd like to share is encouraged to attend.
This program is free and open to all with donations gratefully accepted. For more information contact Mary Hornbuckle (898-3461).
Posted by simon at 7:32 AM Comment

Freese Road bridge

David Weinstein, who lives on Freese Road along the north side of Fall Creek, sent this telling of the Freese Road bridge's history and current functions.

The Freese Road Bridge in Varna was built in 1920, replacing an earlier wrought-iron tress bridge built in 1878 by the Groton Iron Bridge Company (which may have been the same company who constructed the replacement bridge, but no name plate appears on the current bridge so its builder remains speculative). It is one of six Pratt pony-truss bridges remaining in the county to date from this period. It is the longest metal truss bridge in the county, spanning 161 feet. Because of the length of the span, a concrete pier was added to bolster the carrying capacity, and groups of diagonal angle bars were added to strengthen the truss. It is made of steel and is 12 feet 10 inches in width and 8 feet 6 inches high.
Although the bridge used a design commonly employed for economic reasons in less traveled areas, it served as an important access for farms north of Varna to the commercial centers in Varna, a grist mill downstream and a tannery and saw mill upstream from the bridge, all on the south side of the creek. Previous repairs were made to the bridge abutments in 1952 and 1978, and the sheet pilings used for the northern abutment were installed in 1981 after the flooding on Oct 28 undermined the existing abutment. A photo taken on Oct 28th that appeared in the Ithaca Journal soon afterwards showed Fall Creek waters had risen within a few feet of the bottom of the bridge tress.
The current repairs include replacement of the decking, pouring a concrete abutment to replace the attachment of the bridge to the north bank and sheet pilings, and replacement of guardrails and some of the angle braces mentioned above. The water that services Varna crosses the bridge in a pipe that is about level with the road way. The exposed way it surfaces from the ground to go on to the bridge motivated the installation of new guardrails. Although the sewer boosting station for Varna sits immediately adjacent to the bridge on the south bank (and is currently being completely replaced), no sewer line crosses the bridge.
(Information came from the National Register of Historic Places Registration Form, filed by Neil Larson, Atchitechtural Historian and Consultant with Historic Ithaca and Tompkins County on March 1, 1995, and on file at the County Transportation Office. Through this nomination, the bridge is afforded some degree of preservation protection through the NY State Office of Historic Preservation even though no official action was taken on this application).

The bridge is currently closed for construction. It was closed March 29th and originally supposed to re-open April 15, but ithas been extended every week since. The current date is May 13th.

Posted by simon at 7:44 AM Comment

Assessment hearings and planning meetings

Today's Ithaca Journal includes schedules of assessment hearings and comprehensive plan meetings. The local advisory board for assessments will meet at the Dryden Town Hall (map) on Thursday, May 20th, from 3pm to 6pm to hear property owners who wish to contest their assessments. The County Planning Department will hold meetings explaining the draft of their Comprehensive Plan at Dryden Village Hall (map) on May 13th at 7:30pm and at Freeville Village Hall (map) on May 20th at 7pm.

Also, Bolton Point water, which serves the Varna and Hanshaw Road areas of Dryden, won a local taste-testing competition.

In Ithaca schools news, the Journal encourages a 'yes' vote on the budget, while Town of Dryden resident Art Berkey endorses Allen Lambert for school board.

Posted by simon at 12:27 PM Comment

Tuesday night meet the candidates

There will be a "Meet the Candidates" session and school budget hearing for the Dryden Central School District tomorrow, May 11th, at 7pm in room C-13 of the Dryden Middle School/High School.

Posted by simon at 6:51 PM Comment

May 11, 2004

Dryden school budget, Ithaca school candidates

Today's Ithaca Journal includes an article on the Dryden Central School District budget, told mostly through the perspectives of candidates running for the board. It also mentions tonight's candidates forum.

On the editorial page, the Journal endorses Dryden resident David Lee along with Robert DeLuca and Judith Maxwell. There are also a letter from Dryden resident Henry Kramer endorsing Allen Lambert and a letter from Fred Schwartz endorising Lee.

Posted by simon at 8:26 AM Comment

Around the Varna Community Center

Continuing west from the previous set of houses, we finally reach the Varna Community Center.

945 Dryden Road, Bell's Auto
945 Dryden Road, Bell's Auto Care (map)

944 Dryden Road
944 Dryden Road (map)

943 Dryden Road, Varna Community Center
943 Dryden Road, Varna Community Center (map)

The picture of the Varna Community Center was one of the first pictures I posted here. I've enjoyed a lot more time there since!

Posted by simon at 5:32 PM Comment

May 12, 2004

Schools forum, Freeville people

Today's Ithaca Journal has lots of Dryden news, including the weekly Our Towns section.

Last night's Dryden school budget hearing and candidates forum gets an article, examining reaction to the increases and listening to the four candidates for three seats on the board.

There are two articles in the Our Towns section talking about Freeville residents. The first, Freeville woman serves as student grandmother, looks at Betty Postle's 33 years of volunteering at the Freeville Elementary School. Cathy Wakeman's Dryden Town Talk notes Freeville resident Daniel Armitage's upcoming talk on "Lehigh Valley Memories", next Monday at 7:30pm in the Dryden Village Hall (map). Armitage, the "kid from Freeville", seems to have enjoyed a lot of rides on the Lehigh Valley railroad. Wakeman also looks at upcoming baseball and soccer events in Dryden.

The Briefly in Dryden section notes a meeting on storm water management, which will be part of the Town Board meeting Thursday, as well as the availability of absentee ballots for the Dryden school elections.

There's another chart on Dryden demographics, this time looking at the types of housing units used in the town. The data looks much like this from the Census Bureau, except that it doesn't separate owner-occupied from renter-occupied. 56.52% of houses in Dryden are single-unit detached houses, followed in frequency by 19.16% of houses that are mobile homes and 11.40% of houses in complexes of 3-19 units. Only 0.86% of housing units are in complexes of 50 or more units.

On the opinion page, there are two letters supporting Dryden resident David Lee's run for the Ithaca school board, as well as a guest column from Assemblywoman Barbara Lifton looking at changes to the state budget process developed by an Assembly-Senate conference committee that would ease school budget planning.

Finally, it looks like US Airways will be staying at the county airport.

Posted by simon at 8:50 AM Comment

Meeting the candidates and the budget

Last night I went to the Dryden school budget hearing and meet the candidates session. School coverage has been one of the weakest areas on this site, and I figured this was probably the best event to dive into. While both my mother and my mother-in-law served on the Corning school board, I don't know enough about the Dryden district (and just barely live outside of it) to comment in any great detail about school matters, so I'll try to let the pictures tell the story here.

After a brief gathering of board members to get the presentation under way, Vice-President Donna Mott took the stage to present the Dryden Central School District budget.

Donna Mott presents the budget
Donna Mott presents the budget

The Dryden Central School District is facing an 8.71% spending increase, fueled largely by a 17.5% increase in employee benefit costs, a 14% increase in debt service, and an 8.15% increase in instruction costs, reflecting the loss of a grant that paid for three positions last year. (The Dryden Central School District Bulletin contains most of the details of the budget, and has far more detail than I can repeat here.)

Mott's general theme was that the district has been cutting for years, and that this year reflects the district reaching the point where it just can't keep cutting. Externally-determined costs, from mandates to health insurance, are climbing rapidly, and there isn't any easy way to avoid this "year where the chickens come home to roost." The state's STAR program has helped some people, but rising assessments and rising taxes are reducing its effectiveness.

Former school board member Tom Miller, who said he hadn't made up his mind about the budget, requested more detail about their expectations for state aid, noting that the increase in the bulletin looked larger than the $30,000 Mott had mentioned from the governor's budget. $231,000 of that number is building aid, while $100,000 reflects the administration's conversations with legislators and other boards about what the state is likely to provide beyond the governor's budget.

Clint Cotterill brought up assessments, saying he'd "had fifteen people come to talk to me about assessments, and I said they had to pay or leave town." Cotterill emphasized that many of them might well leave town. He also asked about enrollment, down to 1926 from 2260 a few years ago.

Mott and board member Chris Gibbons agreed that the taxes are a growing problem, but an audience member pointed out that as other kinds of taxes have been cut, more of a burden has fallen on property taxes. Superintendent Archambault noted that the state's share of the district's budget has fallen from 60% to 50%. Dryden's tax base also creates a problem, as most of it is residential, with no commercial properties to ease homeowners' tax burden, but it's not poor enough to qualify for many kinds of state aid.

Superintendent Archambault discusses state aid
Superintendent Archambault discusses state aid while board members Chris Gibbons and Donna Mott listen

After the budget discussion, Superintendent Archambault distributed cookies while the candidates assembled and audience members submitted questions. The candidates had brief opening statements, and then had to answer questions from the audience.

Candidates for Dryden school board
Dryden School Board candidates Paul Lutwak, Anderson Young, Margaret DeGaetano, and Russell Kowalski during DeGaetano's opening statement

The discussion was polite - it wasn't exactly a debate, and there weren't any particularly contentious issues to address, apart from general concern over the state of the budget and the continuing delays in the teacher contract. Andy Young joked about being the "voice of experience", with his single year on the board, but all the other candidates are running for the first time.

Paul Lutwak and Anderson Young
Dryden School Board candidate Paul Lutwak speaks while Anderson Young listens

All of the candidates expressed their concern that students receive a solid education and that Dryden stay competitive with other districts in the area. Paul Lutwak suggested a few times that the district needed to look again at its spending, and seek creative ways to save money. He cited his experiences as Director of Information Technology at Newfield, and suggested that perspectives from outside the district would be helpful.

Margaret DeGaetano also cited her experience as a teacher in other districts, and hoped it could bring a different perspective. She also emphasized the potential for bringing more volunteers into the school, from students to older residents to parents. While recognizing that it's hard for people to find time, she felt it was good for both the students and the volunteers.

Margaret DeGaetano and Russ Kowalski
Dryden School Board candidate Margaret DeGaetano takes notes while Russ Kowalski talks about Dryden Lions concessions

Russ Kowalski noted that there are lots of groups trying to get programs started, and that many of them are looking for new ways to fund those programs. He talked about the Lions sharing their concessions proceeds with groups willing to help, and about the town's seed funding for lacrosse.

Everyone hoped that the teachers' contract would be resolved soon, with lots of talk about give and take. Andy Young said that he knew what it felt like to work as a teacher without a contract, and that it takes a toll on everyone involved. Similarly, everyone hoped to be able to take a fresh look at the budget and contribute to new ways to manage spending, and wanted the superintendent to be a leader with strong communications skills.

The Journal has more from the candidates, both in their article on last night's forum and in an earlier piece asking candidates about the budget.

Voting will be at the Dryden Middle School/High School auditorium on May 18th from 7am to 9pm. U.S. citizens 18 years of age or older who are residents of the district can vote.

Posted by simon at 12:22 PM Comment

Candidates, proms, and Corvettes

This week's Dryden Courier leads with an article on students attending last weekend's Dryden prom, "when the cosmic powers that be dim the lights a little bit and put on music with real violins in the background and when a keepsake picture by Dryden Lake sums it all up."

Inside the paper is a full page of conversation with Dryden school board candidates, as well as an article on the Generations Corvette Club, which meets monthly at the Dryden Hotel. There's also a piece on county assessment grievance procedures. It's about Groton, but much of it should apply here as well.

Posted by simon at 8:14 PM Comment

New Town Hall on agenda for tomorrow's Town Board meeting

The agenda for tomorrow night's Town Board meeting looks packed. It starts with four public hearings - one on telecommunications towers and facilities, two on special permits (Oak Brook Drive and Yellow Barn Road), and one on the Storm Water Management Plan. That's just the beginning.

There are at least two possible municipal projects on the agenda: a new Town Hall building and an addition to the highway department garage. The report from the architects looking at the golf course is also to be presented.

An insurance presentation, a number of agreements, a zoning issue on Hunt Hill Road, the hiring of Kelly Services for secretarial assistance for the Zoning Board of Appeals, Planning Board, and Conservation Advisory Board, Recreation Commission changes, computing recommendations, a "grant writing services checklist", a request from the Dryden Town Historical Society, more discussion of the Leisure Lane/Meadow Drive lighting district, dog enumeration, and Youth Commission attendance requirements fill out what looks to be a very busy evening.

Also, "Service Awards Program for Fire Departments" is listed as a "Future Agenda Item".

The meeting will begin at 7pm, Thursday, May 13, at the existing Dryden Town Hall (map).

Posted by simon at 8:28 PM Comment

May 13, 2004

School happenings in The Shopper

Dryden school elections, budgets, and news dominate the Community News section of this week's The Shopper. There are advertisements from Paul Lutwak, Margaret DeGaetano, and Anderson Young, candidates for the board, as well as an ad from David Branagan opposing the school board budget.

There are also reminders from the district about the budget proposition and a proposition to purchase school buses, as well as the list of candidates. Another ad mentions absentee ballots, which need to be delivered personally at this point. The district offices are also moving to the Dryden Middle School effective May 17th.

The Dryden Central School Board Briefs are also in The Shopper, though they haven't been posted on the web site yet. (The April 27th briefs weren't posted either.)

There are also ads from the Dryden Soccer Club, looking for officers and coordinators, from Covenant Love Community School advertising an open house tonight from 7-9pm, and from the Dryden Town Historical Society for its May 17th "Lehigh Valley Memories" presentation with Daniel Armitage, at 7:30pm at the Dryden Village Hall (map).

Posted by simon at 8:27 AM Comment

Republicans to honor Thomas Todd

On WHCU this morning, Tom Hatfield, chairman of the Town of Dryden Republican Committee, announced that the Dryden Republicans are having a golf outing and dinner on June 4th to honor Thomas Todd, a former Dryden town supervisor and current Lansing county legislator.

Dinner only is $25, while a golf/dinner combination is $300 for four people. Hatfield said there weren't a lot of spaces left, but those interested should call Dryden Town Supervisor Steve Trumbull at 844-4334 or Dryden Highway Superintendent Jack Bush at 844-8816.

Also on WHCU, they mentioned a rabies clinic, tonight from 7pm to 9pm at the Dryden Fire Hall (map).

Posted by simon at 8:51 AM Comment

Wage fraud, redistricting

Today's Journal looks at $107,000 in unpaid wages by a Dryden employer following a guilty plea by the firm's former owner.

There are also articles on possible state pension fund changes that might ease the county budget, and Ithaca school board candidates' thoughts on elementary school redistricting.

On the opinion page, Dryden resident and Ithaca school board member Henry Kramer opposes the Ithaca budget, and Dryden resident David Lee gets another endorsement. David Branagan of Dryden writes to oppose the Dryden school budget.

Posted by simon at 8:58 AM Comment

Conservation Advisory Board seeks members

Kathy Zahler writes with news from a neighbor:

Dryden's Conservation Board is seeking two members to fill open positions. The board meets on the second Tuesday of each month at 7:30. Its job is to analyze data and make recommendations to the Town Board involving conservation and ecological issues. For more information, call Steve Bissen at 539-6934.
Posted by simon at 1:51 PM Comment

Freese Road bridge reopens

The Freese Road bridge, which was closed on March 29th, finally reopened last night.

Bridge open, Freese Road
Bridge open at Freese Road

Work appears to continue on the sewer pump on the south side of the bridge.

Sewer work, Freese Road
Sewer work continues at Freese Road

Posted by simon at 5:10 PM Comment

May 14, 2004

Ithaca candidates and budget, homeless census

Most of the Dryden-related articles in today's Ithaca Journal have to do with the Ithaca school board elections and budget. There are a set of questions for candidates and answers, a piece on a meet-the-candidates forum, and a letter co-signed by Dryden resident Kathleen R. Krafft endorsing Dryden resident David Lee and fellow candidates Judy Maxwell and Bob DeLuca.

There is also an article on a homeless census in Ithaca that notes that "Much of the focus was centered in Ithaca, where the homeless problem is more visible, but volunteers went to Trumansburg, Slaterville Springs and Dryden."

Posted by simon at 8:37 AM Comment

Angry neighbors

Nearly two hours of the Town Board's 4½-plus-hour meeting (they went into executive session at 11:25pm) were taken up with problems that the Town Board could only address in small part. Disputes between neighbors made for a long public hearing and a long discussion of whether to ask the town attorney to ask for a state injunction supporting an order Zoning Officer Henry Slater had issued barring people from the premises of 483 Hunt Hill Road.

The public hearing focused on Nick Bellisario's request for a special permit for a self-storage facility at 15 Oak Brook Drive (map). Bellisario presented maps and drawings and said he was willing to be flexible about the design of the project.

Nick Bellisario answers questions about his plans for a self-storage facility
Nick Bellisario answers a question from Marty Christofferson about his plans for a self-storage facility

Neighbors, however, aren't happy with Bellisario's plans. Susan Boutros, a neighbor at 9 Oak Brook Drive and owner of Environmental Associates, a company on Oak Brook Drive, worried that traffic would increase dramatically on the road right by her house - "and especially on weekends in the summer, when I'd most like to enjoy my yard." She wasn't convinced that a fence would reduce the impact of the facility on her property.

Susan Boutros goes over maps and drawings with the Town Board
Susan Boutros goes over maps and drawings with the Town Board

Boutros had concerns about the driveway, which is "at the level of my second story bedroom and porch," as well as about drainage in the area, which is steep and heavily filled. She asked "why do we seem to have 25-year floods every two years?"

The driveway at 15 Oak Brook Drive
The driveway at 15 Oak Brook Drive and the porch at 9 Oak Brook Drive

The county had also found the project to have a negative environmental impact in April, and reversed itself yesterday, the day of the meeting.

Boutros' son Ed and Kathleen Doerge also criticized the impact on the property and Bellisario's practices regarding the property lines shared by Bellisario's properties and the Boutros' properties. Margaret Ackerblade, who lives just downhill from the project at 1149 Dryden Road, said that Bellisario had improved things greatly since purchasing the property from a previous owner, and that she had far fewer drainage problems.

In the end, the Town Board opted to extend the hearing to a future meeting. They couldn't resolve the neighbors' disputes, but they couldn't proceed without having contour maps that were accurate and reflected the last several years of fill. They requested that the property owner do a fresh survey of the contours of the area affected.

The other dispute arose from the agenda item "enjoin 483 Hunt Hill Road residential property - authority from Town Board to Attorney Perkins." On January 13, at the request of the County Health Department, Henry Slater had ordered the premises - the entire property, not just the house - vacated. Various efforts at testing the septic system had failed, there was reason to believe that the septic was faulty, and neighbors at 730 Midline Road had been sickened, apparently by their use of well water.

730 Midline Road and 483 Hunt Hill Road
730 Midline Road and 483 Hunt Hill Road

Craig Basl, of 730 Midline, said that he was "not looking to sue anyone... All I want is fixed. It's affecting my quality of life. I shouldn't be living with a jug of water for everything I want to do."

The situation is complicated by a number of factors, including a dispute over the septic tank between Casey Gaul, who was buying the property under contract from Wayne Armstrong's wife, and questions about whether the Board of Health should be handling this. The current problem, which sparked Slater's request for legal help, is the presence of a camper on the property. Brian Clapper, the occupant of the camper, has been staying there, though he says the camper's septic is completely self-contained.

Town Attorney Mahlon Perkins didn't seem eager to take on the case, first arguing that the county attorney should be doing it, then saying that he thought a court would throw it out since a self-contained camper shouldn't be adding to septic problems. Town Board member Chris Michaels felt the case was simpler than that, and that the "Town has a strong interest in upholding its orders and seeing them honored." In the end the board sided with Michaels.

Both of these situations have roots that aren't resolvable by the Town Board. The board decided - to the extent it decided - on very narrow aspects of the situations, focusing on the town's obligations and its needs for making and enforcing decisions. The rest sounds like it will head for the courts or continue to bubble. I'm not sure that there's a good general way to resolve these kinds of disputes among neighbors, but after last night I'm thinking hard about that problem.

In friendlier news, the public hearing on the proposed bed & breakfast at 125 Yellow Barn Road went smoothly, with neighbors attending to support the application.

Posted by simon at 12:57 PM Comment

May 15, 2004

Golf course, new Town Hall prospects

The Ithaca Journal's Jennie Daley reports on Thursday night's golf course discussion as well as a new Town Hall, a subject that was on the agenda but only discussed in executive session.

It sounds from the article like the decision whether to pursue the golf course and for how much (it's going up for auction) will be made in executive session next week.

On the Town Hall, it's not clear whether the town is considering renovating its existing site or considering renovating a different building, in addition to the prospect of building a new building. If the town hall moves, the existing building will likely be used by the Highway Department. The vote on that should be at the next meeting.

Posted by simon at 11:07 AM Comment

School elections

With school elections coming Tuesday, the Ithaca Journal has a collection of articles on different aspects of school elections, as well as lots of letters endorsing various candidates.

Included today are:

  • an article on voter apathy, with quotes from Dryden residents and retiring Ithaca School Board members Art Berkey and Henry Kramer, as well as a comparison of tax rates in the City of Ithaca and Village of Dryden (though it looks like the Town to me)
  • an article on what's involved in being on a school board, again citing Kramer
  • letters to the editor (in two parts) supporting school candidates, including Marget DeGaetano and Anderson Young in the Dryden district and Dryden resident David Lee in the Ithaca district.

Laurels and Darts also includes two Dryden-related laurels. One is from Elizabeth Hess of Ithaca thanking donors for raffle gifts used in a fund-raiser by the Stone Circle School on Turkey Hill Road, and another is from Margaret DeGaetano thanking "six awesome kids" who helped remove more than fifteen bags of trash from Cady Lane in Freeville.

Posted by simon at 11:25 AM Comment

Firefighters honor Neff

A procession of fire trucks from local departments drove from the Harford Fire Station to Willow Glen Cemetery today for a fireman's and veteran's burial ceremony for volunteer fireman Bret Neff, who died February 23rd while answering a call in the Town of Caroline.

Fire trucks at Willow Glen cemetery
Fire trucks and flag at Willow Glen Cemetery

Posted by simon at 3:58 PM Comment

May 16, 2004

Southworth Library

Unlike many of the buildings and businesses George Goodrich described in his 1897 Centennial History, Southworth Library still stands and is still a library serving the public.

The Southworth Library
Southworth Library, around 1897.

Chapter XXIX.

The Southworth Library.

If anyone could have claimed to unite in her veins the flow of the blue blood of the Dryden pioneer aristocracy, that person was Jennie McGraw-Fiske. Her great-grandfather was Judge Ellis, "King of Dryden" in its early years. Her grandfather was John Southworth, Dryden's millionaire farmer, while her father was John McGraw, Dryden's barefooted farmer boy in 1827, who soon commenced his business career as a clerk in a Dryden store at eight dollars per month, becoming later a Dryden merchant, and after a life of great business activity and success died possessed of an estate worth two millions.

Jennie McGraw-Fiske
Jennie McGraw-Fiske.

She was born in the house on North street in Dryden village now owned and occupied by Mrs. E. H. Lord, nearly opposite to the Southworth homestead, in September, 1840. Her mother died and her father moved from Dryden before she was ten years of age. She was educated at Canandaigua and at a school in Westchester county. Her health always delicate, she was encouraged to gratify her taste for foreign travel, which she did, first visiting Europe when about twenty years of age, and several times afterwards.

Of her marriage to Prof. Willard Fiske in 1880 and her death in the following year, which was subsequently followed by the celebrated litigation as the result of which the bequest of the bulk of her estate to Cornell University was defeated, we need not speak here at length.

In the distribution of the estate of her grandfather, John Southworth, she received a share as representing her deceased mother, and it seems to have been her desire to return to Dryden village a substantial memorial to her grandfather out of this portion of her estate, for in her will she makes the following provision:

"I give and bequeath unto Jeremiah W. Dwight, John E. McElheny and Dr. J. J. Montgomery, all of Dryden, N. Y., the sum of thirty thousand dollars, in trust, for the following uses and purposes, to wit: I desire that they, with such associates as they may select, shall procure, under the laws of the State of New York, a corporation or association to be organized at Dryden aforesaid under the name of The Southworth Library Association, the object and purpose whereof shall be the building, support, and maintenance of a public library in the said village of Drydenl that said trustees shall transfer said trust funds to said association upon the trust and condition that not more than fifteen thousand dollars of said sum shall be expended in real estate, buildings, and furniture, and that the remainder shall constitute a fund to be invested and the interest or income thereof to be applied to the purchase of books and other necessary expenses of said association, excluding, however, salaries of officers and pay of servants thereof.

"If this purpose be not accomplished within three years after my death the trust shall cease and the fund shall be paid to and distributed with my residuary estate."

In pursuance of this bequest the Southworth Library Association was incorporated April 22, 1883, with Jeremiah W. Dwight, John E. McElheny, John J. Montgomery, Henry B. Napier and Erastus S. Rockwell as incorporators. In the following year the Baucus property on the corner of South and Union streets was purchased and remodeled so as to provide temporary accomodations for the library, and here it was first opened to the public September 25, 1884.

For about ten years the Library was accomodated in a portion of this building, the rent of the remainder, which was leased for a dwelling, being used to pay the expense of employing a librarian.

In the meantime a permanent site was purchased on the new corner on Main street formed by opening Library street, and a fine, substantial building here erected of which we are able to give the accompanying pictorial illustration.

It is constructed of Ohio sandstone in a very thorough and substantial manner at an expense of about fifteen thousand dollars. The building is fire-proof and includes commodious and elegant reading rooms. Here the trustees intend, among other things, to provide for a collection of historical relics, which will be securely preserved for future generations. The structure was completed in the year 1894, since which time there has been presented to the association and placed in the tower of the building, a Seth Thomas clock, the gift of Mrs. D. F. Van Vleet, of Ithaca, as a memorial of her parents, Mr. and Mrs. John C. Lacy, who were for a long time residents of Dryden.

Some unhappy differences of opinion among the citizens of the village as to the intentions of Mrs. Fiske in excluding from the purposes for which the funds of her gift could be used "the salaries of officers and pay of servants thereof" has caused the building to be closed for some portion of the time, for the lack of a provision, as the trustees claim, for the employment and pay of a janitor and a librarian, and these questions are not yet settled to the satisfaction of all; but it is believed that these matters will soon be determined by the courts or otherwise.

According to the last report of the librarian, in the month of April, 1897, the number of volumes in the Library was 6994. These volumes comprise a careful selection of the best works in the whole field of literature, including the latest editions of all standard authorities. The invested interest-bearing funds of the associations now amount to about seventeen thousand dollars, the income from which is to be devoted principally to the purchase of books and will continue to supply the reader matter best adapted to the wants of the people in ever-increasing accumulations of the best works of the best authors. Prof. Willard Fiske, although sojourning in Italy for the past few years, has been made a trustee of the association and has shown his interest in the institution by presenting to the Library a valuable and unique set of the complete works of the bard, John Dryden. The following is a list of the present officers and trustees of the association:

John E. McElheny, President,D. R. Montgomery,
Dr. J. J. Montgomery, Vice-President,John W. Dwight,
Dr. F. S. Jennings, Secretary,D. E. Bower,
Willard Fiske,
Treasurer,H.B. Lord

Goodrich, George B. The Centennial History of the Town of Dryden, 1797-1897. Dryden: Dryden Herald Steam Printing House, 1898. Reprinted 1993 by the Dryden Historical Society. Pages 47-49.

(The Dryden Historical Society, which sells this book, may be reached at 607-844-9209.)

Posted by simon at 10:14 AM Comment

Computing at Town Hall

The Town Board had The Computing Center review its computer usage, and the board briefly discussed the report (625KB PDF) at the very end of their meeting on Thursday.

Board members Christofferson and Stelick were concerned with the costs of the proposed improvements. Computers can sometimes seem like an ever-expanding budget black hole, and the numbers in the report add up quickly. $3789 for a server is a substantial cost, as is the $3600 for backup hardware and software. The cost for the Windows 2003 Small Business Server software with 15 licenses to run it is unspecified - "purchase this off state contract" - but would be around $1500 if bought through more ordinary channels. It also discusses the prospect of centralizing email, as the town currently uses a variety of addresses.

It is a lot of money, and I'd encourage the board to look closely at how they would use the server and how much of a server they really need, but at the same time, having minimal security and no separate backup is a large problem that needs to be addressed. Admittedly, I haven't poured time into my home network to address those things, but I'm not maintaining the same kinds of records.

I asked Town Clerk Bambi Hollenbeck about the computers that seem to be spreading across Town Hall. She said the office had computerized since she became clerk, and that Dryden, like other town clerks in Tompkins County, is running dedicated software from Williamson Law. The DEC also provides a separate computer for issuing licenses.

I have no idea what the proposed new Town Hall will look like, but it might be useful to give visitors a computer for access to information about the town like maps, application forms, event calendars, etc. Done badly it would probably just annoy people and cost money, but done right it might take some question-answering off the clerk's and other offices.

Update: modified the story to make it clear that other towns in the county, not the county itself, are using Williamson Law software.

Posted by simon at 1:23 PM Comment

March and April Town Board minutes

Now that I'm attending Town Board meetings, I'm less frantic about the minutes, but it's still good to see them, as they have a lot of detail (especially about resolutions) that isn't easily captured. For instance, in the April minutes, Resolution #71 says that:

"this Town Board does hereby authorize the Town Supervisor, subject to review and approval by the Town Attorney, to execute amended contracts for fire protection, with the intent to clarify the language regarding audits and borrowing out of reserve funds."

means that I'll need to go back and find out what became of Marty Christofferson's proposed amendments to fire contracts, as there's no requirement for those amendments to come back to the board.

The March minutes are also available.

Posted by simon at 1:54 PM Comment

Resources explaining local government in New York

One of the challenges in writing this site has been sorting out which government entity is responsible for what. The state, county, town, and village responsibilities all feel intermingled, and it gets even more complicated when I try to figure out the flows of money between them and the way that affects the taxes we pay directly to them.

I've found a few resources which are very helpful. The New York Department of State has a publications list, which includes a wide variety of documents. The best place to start is probably the Local Government Handbook (1504KB PDF, 257 pages), which explains government from the state level down. They also have information on all kinds of local legal issues, from agricultural districts to zoning.

The New York Association of Towns also has all kinds of information, notably publications like the Town Law Handbook, Office of Town Highway Superintendent, and Office of Town Clerk. They cost a few dollars - they're on paper - but they have a lot of information.

There's also the New York State Conference of Mayors and Municipal Officials. Most of their publications (Handbook for Elected Village Officials, Local Government Resource Book: Innovative Projects & Programs in NYS) are unfortunately for members only. A $10 book costs a lot more when a $650 membership is required to make the purchase! They do have some files linked from the bottom of their front page, though, including information on village incorporation and a guide to performing marriages.

Posted by simon at 2:29 PM Comment

May 17, 2004

Lane on Empire Zones

County Legislator Mike Lane is quoted in today's Ithaca Journal on the state's Empire Zone program, which has left Tompkins County as one of 11 counties without one. Lane says that "it would be different if only really economically depressed areas were targeted for zones." He also notes that the county's Industrial Development Agency is conservative about handing out tax abatements in any case, something worth considering given recent controversy over Empire Zone abuses. Tompkins County is trying to lease 13 acres of Empire Zone from Schuyler County, but is also trying to get its own acreage.

Also in the Journal, Dryden Planning Board member Joe Laquatra will be presenting on energy-efficient lighting at Cornell, and the County Planning Department will be presenting the County Comprehensive Plan at Freeville Village Hall (map) on Thursday, May 20th at 7pm.

Posted by simon at 7:57 AM Comment

Degrees of openness

I haven't been reading legal notices as consistently as I should be, but this one from Ulysses today caught my eye:

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Town Board of the Town of Ulysses will hold a Special Town Board Meeting May 22, 2004 at 8:00 AM for the purpose of interviewing of the applicants interested in the Planning Board.

While I'm definitely not convinced that a Town Board meeting is an ideal way to spend a Saturday morning at 8am, I'm impressed that the board is doing its interviews in the open, and that the public can attend. That doesn't seem to be Dryden practice, as only one candidate was actually presented to the Town Board (by description) and voted on for both April's Planning Board appointment of Jim Crawford and Thursday's appointment of Thomas Quinn to the Zoning Board of Appeals.

This got me thinking a bit more about some other decisions that seem to be moving forward without much public input. The golf course discussion has at least been partly in public, but last I heard from Town Board members (the March meeting) there wasn't much certainty over whether it should happen, and conversation seems to have shifted to executive session, as if the conversation is only about terms, not about whether it's a good or bad idea. (I very mildly support the purchase, if that matters.)

The possibility of a new town hall is another case where big things might happen, but all of that discussion is in executive session. What discussion I've seen of what's happening on that front has been in the Journal, not at meetings. I doubt the board will buy property in any of the far corners of the town, but right now there's no way to know.

I certainly hope they'll look for public input on what people want in a town hall as construction or renovation get closer, and it would be great to know where the money for this will come from. Reserves, I'm guessing.

Posted by simon at 10:10 PM Comment

May 18, 2004

School elections today

School budget and board elections are today. The Ithaca Journal gives an overview of school elections in the county.

In Dryden, the two largest districts by far are the Dryden Central School District and the Ithaca City School District. Voting for the Dryden district is at the the Dryden Middle School/High School Auditorium from 7am to 9pm today.

According to the budget notice mailed by the Ithaca district, Ithaca school voting is from noon to 9pm, at Alternative Community School, Beverly J. Martin School, Belle Sherman Annex, Fall Creek School, South Hill School, Franziska Racker Centers, Enfield School, Danby Town Hall, Cayuga Heights School, Caroline School, Northeast School, and Varna Community Center. (Tompkins County GIS has this 2000 school election district map, but I worry that it's outdated as it doesn't show Varna as a voting location.)

Also in today's Journal, Tompkins County Trust Company recognized Anne Grant for volunteer work including Southworth Library and Dryden Dairy Days. She donated the $2000 award to Southworth Library.

Posted by simon at 8:19 AM Comment

Remembering the Lehigh Valley

After an organizational meeting for the Dryden Town Historical Society, a packed Village Hall listened to Daniel Armitage talk about the thrills of being the "kid from Freeville", riding and occasionally operating the Lehigh Valley Railroad's trains from the age of eight through high school.

Ginny Stairs led the crowd through an election that put Gary Shelhamer, Sandra Prugh, Shirley Price, and Shirley Shackleton on the Board of Trustees, who then elected David Smith as their president, taking over from Laurence Beach, who is retiring from the post. (Attendees also signed a get well soon card for Beach.)

Ginny Stairs conducts the election
Ginny Stairs conducts the Dryden Town Historical Society election.

While the trustees met for their election, railfans looked through books, scrapbooks, and photos at the front and cookies and punch were available.

Railfans browse
Railfans look over photos.

Armitage started by saying how lucky he'd been to have the Freeville station in his backyard, and describing how he'd hung out at the station when he was five. When he was eight, Nick Fisk, an engineer on the Lehigh Valley, gave him his first train ride, to East Ithaca station, and let him blow the whistle at the Game Farm Road crossing. Soon enough, he was "going off at all hours day and night with a bunch of ruffians who worked on the railroad", and the coffee maker in his parents' house was always busy. When the Freeville line was downgraded to a secondary line, crews used to call his house to find out if other trains had passed.

Armitage had plenty of adventures, driving a train to Sayre after its engineer had violated Rule G a number of times, drinking martinis and beer, and getting "English lessons" from a profane man named Truman. He had his own switch keys and flares, and switched the Freeville crossing. He didn't think the railroad knew of his adventures, but in a later conversation with Vic Cole, the retired Road Foreman of Engines for the Lehigh Valley, Cole told Armitage:

"Yeah, Danny, I always did know about it. I've known about you for a long times - but I also knew the people you were with."

Armitage did his best to help those people, notably Ken Rice, the last station master at Freeville. The night of the station's closing, Armitage took the signs off the station. He went to see Rice at Dryden, where Rice was shocked at how quickly the signs had disappeared - until Armitage opened his car door and gave him one.

Daniel Armitage talks about his railroad childhood.
Daniel Armitage talks about his railroad childhood.

Armitage also told the story of decorating a Lehigh Valley train going from Dryden to Moravia through Groton as the "Purple Express", just in time for it to block Groton schoolbuses at the crossing on the day of the Dryden-Groton football game.

After telling his own stories, Armitage presented a slide show of Lehigh Valley trains and stations, from Fair Haven to Sayre, talking about the time (before his time) when Freeville saw sixteen passenger trains a day.

Daniel Armitage shows slides of the Lehigh Valley.
Daniel Armitage shows slides of the Lehigh Valley.

After the slides, an attendee asked Armitage why he hadn't gone on to work for the railroad. He'd applied for a brakeman's position in 1973, and the company was eager to hire him, but an overzealous company doctor kept him out for nearsightedness - despite his having a pilot's license. When Conrail was formed in 1976, they laid off everyone with less than five years' experience anyway, so it wouldn't have worked for long anyway.

(If you'd like more information on this presentation or are interested in Ken Rice's book on working for the Lehigh Valley, contact the Dryden Town Historical Society at 607-844-9209.)

Posted by simon at 6:29 PM Comment

May 19, 2004

Dryden school budget fails in tie; Ithaca budget passes

The Dryden Central Schools budget failed to pass with a 718-718 tie. The school buses proposal passed 738-592, and Anderson Young (1055 votes), Margaret DeGaetano (936), Russ Kowalski (902) will join the board, defeating Paul Lutwak (699 votes). Board President Rachel Dickinson said the district will create a new budget, not present the same one.

In the Ithaca district, the budget passed 2452-1077. Dryden resident David Lee led vote counts with 2697, followed by Judith Maxwell (2487) and Robert DeLuca (1569). Runners-up included Wilma Martin (1412), Allen Lambert (1279), and David Shoemaker (600). Ithaca also approved a separate $1.25 million spending measure.

In county news, the Journal quotes County Legislator Mike Lane on the county's push to have an Empire Zone here.

The Our Towns section is mostly about Groton, but the Dryden Briefs mention the Sierra Mist Dribble, Pass, & Score competition this Saturday at Dryden High School on Saturday, May 22nd, at 9am, as well as Dryden Dairy Day, which will be June 12th at Montgomery Park.

Posted by simon at 8:11 AM Comment

Dryden residential assessments lowest increase in county

Dryden has the only residential assessment increase below 10% in all of Tompkins County, with a 9.11% increase. The table of preliminary assessments by town (which accompanied this article in yesterday's Journal) also shows neighboring Groton with a 12.85% increase, Caroline with a 12.98% increase, and the Town of Ithaca with a 14.8% increase. Enfield has the highest increase - 28.11% - while Newfield and Lansing both have increases around 18%.

Dryden is in the middle of the pack for commercial assessments, increasing 6.64%.

Overall, this means that Dryden residents will be paying a lower share of county taxes next year as other towns' valuations have increased more than Dryden's.

In another bit of print-only data, this week's Our Towns section reports that nearly half - 47.87% - of the town's 6,798 employed residents over 16 commute from 15-29 minutes, while 36.92% have a fifteen minute or shorter commute. Only 3.81% commute an hour or more.

Posted by simon at 8:34 AM Comment

Memorial Day parade, Freeville clean-ups, Southworth events

This week's issue of The Shopper includes an announcement for the Dryden Veterans Memorial Home's Memorial Day parade, to be held Saturday, May 29th at 10:30am in the Village of Dryden, with a memorial service at 11am in tribute to World War II veterans. There will also be a free luncheon for participants.

There is also a notice that the Village of Freeville will be having a metal clean-up day (no refrigerators, freezers, or air conditioners) on Saturday, June 5th, and a furniture clean-up day (no mattresses or tires) on Saturday, June 12th. Items must be out before 7am on Saturday.

The Southworth Library advertises that it will be closed on Memorial Day weekend, and having both a "Traditional Troubador" and a clown at Dryden Dairy Day on June 12th. They'll also be having Mrs. McPuppet on Saturday the 26th on the Library Lawn, and a Mime Workshop with Robert Rivest on July 19th.

Posted by simon at 7:48 PM Comment

May 20, 2004

Fire on Hanshaw Road; religion and public service

Last night at 7:20pm, firefighters responded to a call of a burning mobile home, which they were not able to save. Medical oxygen tanks createdan additional hazard. Earlier in the day, the county had a major malfunction in its microwave emergency communications system, though no "major emergencies" happened while it was down.

Today's Ithaca Journal also has a guest column from Charles DeMotte of Dryden which examines the relationship between religious beliefs and public life, and particularly the President's religious rhetoric of the last few years.

Posted by simon at 7:54 AM Comment

Planning meetings tonight

There are two planning-related meetings in Dryden tonight:

Posted by simon at 8:39 AM Comment

Courier on golf course

This week's Dryden Courier takes a long look at Lakeview Golf Course, the course the Town of Dryden has been considering buying. While it opens with the prospect of the town buying the course, it spends most of its time talking about the course itself, the problematic nine extra holes added two years ago, and the volunteers keeping the course alive.

Inside, there is an article on the guilty plea and sentencing of Melea Bartley for failure to pay wages to employees at Integrated Payment Solutions, Inc., of Dryden, as well as coverage of the Pepsi Pitch, Hit & Run contest that was held April 24th. There's also a guest opinion from Kimberley Kathan on David Walrath, who is running against Sherwood Boehlert in the Republican primary for Congress, which includes Dryden. The opinion concludes "Let's get involved this year and say goodbye to Walrath for good."

Posted by simon at 10:13 PM Comment

May 21, 2004

Lane attempts to reduce assessment frequency

County Legislator Mike Lane put forward a resolution to shift assessment from every year to every three years, citing rapid increases in the last few years, but the meeting of the Government Operations Council wouldn't move on it.

(I stopped by Dryden Town Hall yesterday, and the parking lot was pretty full, apparently because of assessment reviews going on. Deputy Town Clerk Kris Strickland said the first attendee had arrived at 1:30, when the reviews didn't start until 3:00.)

Also in today's Journal, Dryden Dairy Day is looking for volunteers and parade entrants.

Posted by simon at 8:15 AM Comment

Golf course discussion at Town Board

Though the Town Board reached the issue late in the evening, discussion of the proposed Lakeview Golf Course purchase was a popular topic at last Thursday's board meeting.

Discussion opened with Noah Demarest, of Tallman & Demarest, the architects the town commissioned to look into the viability of the course, giving a brief presentation on the state of the course and of golfing in the area.

Noah Demarest explains the state of the Lakeview Golf Course
Noah Demarest explains the current and possible future state of the Lakeview Golf Course

Demarest explained that many of the problems the golf course faced were brought on by its effort to expand to 18 holes to be more competitive with surrounding courses. While 18-hole courses are more profitable generally than 9-hole courses, and Lakeview needs to compete in its market, there wasn't enough room in the land the course used to build a comfortable or safe course. Terrain didn't help. The additional holes created new problems as well as increasing maintenance costs. He suggested that if the course were to continue as a course and have 18 holes, it should buy some additional land across Lake Road for two additional holes.

The market for value courses like Lakeview appears to be saturated, and while there is a market for standard and premium courses here, that isn't helped by the upcoming development of two 18-hole courses in Cortland County, including one at Greek Peak.

Demarest presented a draft report to the board, and a summary - though apparently nothing else - is available. Some pieces of this summary are large graphics, so I've broken the document into smaller parts:

The analysis and the Executive Summary are probably the best reading, though the parcel map made me realize that I had the size of the course wrong in an earlier post.

Lakeview Golf Course parcels
Lakeview Golf Course parcels

The general recommendations suggest:

  1. It is recommended that the Town ensure that the land currently comprising the golf course remains a managed open space asset for the members of the Dryden community.
  2. It is not advised that the Town attempt to keep the golf course as an 18-hole facility in its current configuration.
  3. However, it is advised that the Town attempts to keep all of the parcels together as one managed facility to prevent the loss of opportunity to develop the golf course into an 18-hole facility at a later date.

Running the course seemed be largely a break-even proposition, unlikely to have significant revenue as a nine-hole course but sustainable.

Board member Chris Michaels asked about the prospects for using the additional property if the Town turned the course back into nine holes. While there were some possibilities, including cross-country skiing in winter and designated trails, golf courses tend to be dangerous places when people walk across them.

Sara Osmeloski pointed out that the course is now running its original nine holes, though they're trying to keep the other nine from disappearing. Joe Osmeloski said that the nine hole version was profitable, but the eighteen hole version was dangerous. Jerry Ryan suggested that some of the problems were with course management not listening to customers, especially about having beverages on the course, which prompted County Legislator Martha Robertson to ask if the town could have a liquor license anyway. Apparently concessionaires can have them, as the City of Ithaca does at its municipal course.

Golfers as well as the volunteers currently maintaining the course spoke about the community around the course, and Bob Larsen said that the course was a key reason he moved here. The course's senior program and programs for children came up, as did the prospect of having the Dryden High School team return to the course. Town Supervisor Steve Trumbull was impressed with the volunteer spirit keeping the place going, saying that he "couldn't believe what's going on there" and telling volunteers "you should be on 60 Minutes."

Supporters of the golf course purchase listen to attendees make their case
Supporters of the golf course purchase listen to attendees make their case for buying it.

There's no telling what the board will do with all of this, as substantive discussion about whether to buy the course and for how much was reserved for executive session.

Posted by simon at 12:45 PM Comment

TC3 graduates 563

Tompkins Cortland Community College had its graduation ceremonies yesterday, reports the Ithaca Journal, which takes a close-up look at Susan Pelfrey, a student who earned her degree while battling cancer.

249 graduates were from Tompkins County, 134 from Cortland County, and 24 from Tioga County.

Posted by simon at 5:45 PM Comment

Planning board on subdivisions, agriculture

Last night, the Planning Board approved a subdivision modification, scheduled a hearing for a subdivision, and had a sketch conference on yet another subdivision, before talking about the agricultural parts of the Draft Comprehensive Plan.

The first discussion dealt with a request by Anne Marie Card to change a 1989 subdivision on Annee Lane (map). The modification took one parcel and divided it between two other parcels. The Planning Board approved it.

The second subdivision discussion was a sharply modified version of an earlier proposal. The county rules for subdivisions would require the creation of topographic maps and other data, costing around $40,000. To avoid that, Joan Portzline and Daniel Armitage have changed plans, shifting to an approach that only creates four lots, parcels A-D on the map. The new plan creates three lots - two 1.5 acres, one 3 acres - on Sheldon Road, and one of 6 acres on Wood Road.

Planning Board member David Weinstein noted that the county's approach, by making them do the subdivision in smaller chunks, took control of the overall plan from the town as well. The details of how the subdivision process works and how the county process differs were intricate. Portzline, a long-time realtor, said that "this has been an education for me, after twenty-eight years in the business." The board scheduled a final hearing for this subdivision for the next meeting.

Joan Portzline explains details
Joan Portzline explains details of the Barrett Farm subdivision to the Planning Board.

Portzline had a sketch for a second subdivision of the same original piece of property, called the Barrett Farm subdivision. This subdivision would create three 5 acre parcels at the corner of Wood and Etna Roads. The board scheduled a preliminary hearing for this subdivision for next month.

After the subdivision hearings and an approval (with modification) of the minutes, the meeting turned to discussion of the subject that dominated the comprehensive planning part of the previous meeting, agriculture. A map of agriculture districts was on the table, and Environmental Planner Debbie Gross had sent a list of smaller farms in the town.

Dryden agriculture districts, with proposed changes
Dryden agriculture districts, with proposed changes: additions in blue, removals in red.

Planner George Frantz, as requested, had created a draft description of how the fixed ratio zoning works, showing how using a ratio of land in agriculture to land available for residential development would create a way for farmers to sell lots while keeping good farmland in use. The example in the draft shows parcels fully built out, a scenario that isn't likely to happen quickly.

Frantz noted a current controversy in the Town of Ulysses, where some people want to change the rules for subdivision to rely on road frontage rather than area, something that would preserve vistas but not necessarily farms. He described how these had been used in Pennsylvania, notably in York and Lancaster Counties, and how they seemed to work, though some towns were moving toward 1:20 or 1:40 ratios rather than the 1:10 proposed here.

Ken Miller, a farmer from Richford who works land in Dryden, was there once again with questions. He didn't see the kind of development pressure that those places had faced appearing in Tompkins County any time soon, and was concerned that restricting development on agricultural land would affect the assessed value of the land and therefore the credit farmers could get to run their operations. He said that farmers at a recent Ag Board meeting Frantz and Planning Board Chair Barbara Caldwell had attended seemed rather disgruntled after they left.

Board member David Weinstein pointed out that Miller was both trying to claim that this wasn't necessary because of low development pressure and claiming it was hurting him by keeping down assessments that would only rise if there was lots of development pressure. George Frantz said he had talked with the agricultural credit people, and didn't believe that their assessments worked the way Miller suggested. Board member Joseph LaQuatra also pointed out that farmers leaving farming could request rezoning from the Town Board, and subdivide after that.

Miller didn't seem entirely happy, but there will be more conversation on this, as the board prepared to send Frantz's draft out to a list of farmers and agribusinesses.

David Weinstein also brought up issues with the land on the town's western edge between Route 13 and Hanshaw Road, which the Future Land Use Plan (301KB PDF) currently shows as Office/Industrial/Research. There are wetlands there, and Weinstein hoped to avoid creating another mixed residential/commercial/industrial area. The board agreed to make some changes.

Frantz also said that the Cornell class that will hopefully do architectural charrettes for Varna and Etna will probably be in Spring 2005.

Posted by simon at 8:23 PM Comment

May 22, 2004

Republican County Chair controversy in ICSD

Dryden news is quiet today in the Ithaca Journal, but the opinion page has some sparks which affect at least part of Dryden.

In today's letters from readers, Tompkins County Republican Committee Chairman Mark Finkelstein complains of criticism for his "decision to write a personal letter to local Republicans encouraging them to vote for a certain candidate for ICSD school board, to consider voting for only one candidate and to vote against the proposed school budget."

Finkelstein's letter, while it may have been paid for with private funds and is marked personal, nonetheless was written to Republicans, has a GOP elephant logo at its top, identifies him plainly as the Chairman of the Tompkins County Republican Committee twice, and cites "outgoing ICSD board member and good Republican Henry Kramer". Finkelstein appears to have forgotten that school board elections are non-partisan by design in New York State, and that endorsing a candidate and a budget position this way represents a large step into the race. (I have to wonder whether Finkelstein really wants party partisanship in school district races in the long run, as that would appear to be suicidal for Republicans in the Ithaca district at least.)

Finkelstein appears upset that Dryden County Legislator Martha Robertson had written a pair of letters criticizing his action and encouraging voters to support the budget. Once he opened the partisan battle, I don't think he has any right to be upset that he gets pushback from elected officials who don't happen to share his views or his party.

While I do cover schools here, I take the (supposedly) non-partisan nature of school elections seriously. I made a point of not endorsing candidates or budgets in the recent elections (though I don't think my opinion on that would sway anyone anyway). At the end of his letter to the editor, Finkelstein proclaims "Let a thousand flowers bloom!", but forgets that flowers in the wrong place are often called weeds.

If Finkelstein wanted to send messages about the school board election and not face these kinds of angry complaints that he's interfering inappropriately, he could have sent them on his own personal stationery to the Ithaca Journal, without his party title. He doesn't appear to have helped his candidate or his cause succeed in any event.

Also in letters, Kimberley Kathan writes to encourage Republican voters in New York's 24th Congressional District, which includes the Town of Dryden, to vote for Sherwood Boehlert rather than David Walrath in the upcoming primary. (The Auburn Citizen reports that an aide to the Walrath campaign has been sending out fake letters.)

Ithaca Journal Managing Editor Bruce Estes, who lives in Dryden, writes about the Journal's fight against a subpoena for their web site records, and Dryden Schools Superintendent Pat Archambault sends a laurel to Dryden Sertoma, Swan's Cycles, and Target for a bike rodeo and safety event.

Posted by simon at 12:41 PM Comment

Town insurance policies

I'm way behind in covering last week's Town Board meeting. One of the briefer topics they discussed was insurance for the town, with John Bailey of George B. Bailey Insurance presenting their current insurance and the prospects for the future.

Because insurance is in a "hard market", with investments producing very little cushioning, insurance premiums are up. The full report (501KB PDF) shows that the town's premiums, without changes, will likely grow from $65,389 to $69,928 (without terrorism coverage), a 6.9% increase. (Premiums had declined in the late 1990s because of the stock market boom, but rose again when that ended.) Bailey did suggest increasing the uninsured motorist coverage.

There were some discussions about terrorism insurance, which the federal government requires be provided as an option. Bailey explained that it would cost $2013 for 2003-4, and only applies in cases where the federal government declares that a terrorist attack has occurred and the total damages of the incident - not just in Dryden - are greater than $5 million.

Councilman Marty Christofferson asked where coaches and similar positions fall in insurance, and Bailey reassured him that they're covered for programs under the auspices of the town, complete with accident insurance.

No action was taken at the meeting to change the insurance, which is up for renewal June 1st. Bailey will be meeting with the Insurance Committee, composed of Councilmen Christofferson and Hattery.

Posted by simon at 5:10 PM Comment

May 23, 2004

Robertson seeks county prescription card

The Ithaca Times reports that County Legislator Martha Robertson is working on creating a prescription discount card program for Tompkins County, "aimed mostly at county residents with no health insurance or no prescription drug insurance program options."

For $15 or $26 per year, card users would be able to get discounts at pharmacies, through a mail order system, or possibly through Canadian pharmacies.

Posted by simon at 10:12 AM Comment

West of the Varna Community Center

These three houses appear as you go west from the Varna Community Center.

940 Dryden Road
940 Dryden Road (map)

939 Dryden Road
939 Dryden Road (map)

936 Dryden Road
936 Dryden Road (map)

Posted by simon at 12:52 PM Comment

Opening the road to Dryden

In this chapter near the start of his Centennial History, George Goodrich tells of the early surveying and naming of Dryden, its passage from county to county, its sale to soldiers of the Revolutionary War, and the challenge of building the Bridle Road, which many of us drive in considerably widened form today.

Chapter III.

The Approach of Civilization.

The War of the Revolution was practically ended in 1781, two years after Sullivan's Campaign was carried out against the Indians of Western New York. Within the next ten years the remnants of the Iroquois confederacy ceded their lands, by various treaties, to the State. Conditions favorable to the settlement of this locality were thus rapidly developed. Other sections of the country, both north and south of us, more readily reached by means of navigable lakes and rivers, were already occupied by the pioneer settlers, while the ridge separating the head waters of the St. Lawrence from those of the Susquehanna, of which our town forms a part, were still largely uninhabited. In February, 1789, the N. Y. State Legislature passed a law for surveying and setting apart for the use of its soldiers of the Revolution who then survived, a large section of land between Seneca and Oneida lakes afterwards known as the "Military Tract", comprising nearly two million acres, and including the town of Dryden, which was designated in the survey as Township No. 23. This tract was surveyed in the years 1789 and 1790, and divided into twenty-six townships, to which two more were afterwards added, making twenty-eight in all, each being about ten miles square and containing one hundred lots of about one mile square each. Dryden is one of the few to retain nearly its original dimensions. The little notch which formerly existed in the southeast corner of the town before the seven lots were set off to Caroline, was caused by the overlapping of the territory known as the Massachusetts Ten Townships upon the Military Tract, the West Owego Creek, which rises in Dryden near the southwest corner, being the west boundary of the former. The lots of Dryden were surveyed in the year 1790, by John Konkle, of Schoharie. In the southeast corner of each lot was set apart one hundred acres, known and frequently referred to in old descriptions, which are brought down into deeds of even this date, as the "State's Hundred Acres," which the owner had the option of exchanging for an equal number of acres of U. S. lands in Ohio; and out of each lot was reserved a piece of fifty acres, known as the "Survey Fifty Acres," which was retained by the surveyor for his services, unless redeemed by the owner at eight dollars. So poor were the early inhabitants in those days, and so scarce was money, that many of them were unable to raise the eight dollars necessary to save the Survey Fifty Acres of their lots even on those terms.

Out of each township one lot was reserved for gospel and school purposes and another for promoting literature, the gospel and school lot in Dryden being No. 29 and the literature lot No. 63. The other lots were drawn by ballot in the year 1791 by the New York soldiers of the Revolution, each private and non-commissioned officer being entitled to draw one lot. A copy of the "Balloting Book" containing the names of the soldiers of the Revolution by whom the lots of the Town of Dryden were originally drawn, can now be found in the Tompkins county clerk's office. This method of distribution of the land of the township by ballot, accounts for the fact that the early settlers of the town did not come in large colonies from any particular part of the older settlements, but came singly or in small groups from localities widely separated.

Prior to this time all of the western part of the state was embraced in the old county of Montgomery, but in the year 1791 Herkimer and Tioga counties, the latter including Dryden, were set off from Montgomery and in 1794 Onondaga county, then made to include all of the Military Tract, was formed and set off from Tioga and Herkimer. Thus our Township No. 23 was, from 1791 to 1794, a part of Tioga county, becoming in 1794 a part of Onondaga county, and so remained until it was appropriated to form a part of the new county of Cayuga in 1799, and was afterwards set off to form a part of the present county of Tompkins upon its organization in the year 1817.

It is thus seen how it happens that all of the records of land titles of the town of Dryden, prior to 1817 and subsequent to 1799, are found in the clerk's office of the county of Cayuga, the records of our own county commencing with its formation in 1817. Township No. 23, while in Montgomery county, was included in the political subdivision of Whitestown; upon its incorporation into Tioga county in 1791 it became a part of the old town of Owego; but when it was absorbed by Onondaga county it was at first included, in its political existence, with the present townships of Enfield and Ithaca in the original town of Ulysses, the organization of which dates back to the formation of Onondaga county in 1794. On Feb. 22, 1803, Township No. 23 was set off by itself, having been previously named Dryden by the commissioners of the land office, in honor of John Dryden, the English poet. The townships of Ithaca and Enfield remained a part of Ulysses, in their political organization, until four years later.

But few of the soldiers of the Revolution came and settled upon the lots which fell to them. The old veterans of those days, like some of later times, cared more for their present comfort than for an opportunity of finding new homes in the wilderness of the Military Tract. Nor can the old Revolutionary soldiers, after having passed through the hardships involved in the seven years' war with England, be blamed for shrinking from the privation and suffering incident to pioneer life in a new country. Many of them disposed of their titles for a mere trifle. For instance, it is said that the original owner of the lot of 640 acres upon which the Dryden Center House now stands, sold it for a coat, hat, one drink of rum, and one dollar in money, and that the soldier who drew Lot No. 9 sold it for "one great coat." "Land sharks" existed even in those days and a great many of the soldiers' claims to the territory of Dryden were bought up for a trifling consideration by speculators in the East, who held them for advanced prices, at which time they were sold to those who became actual settlers.

So great a length of time elapsed between the drawing of the lots and the actual occupation of them, and so many loose and fraudulent transfers were made of them in the meantime, that the uncertainty of titles resulting was one of the troubles which vexed and disappointed the early settlers, much more than we of the present day can realize. Some, however, of the original owners retained their lots and occupied the lands which the government has given them as a bounty for their services. As an example, Elias Larabee, who drew Lot No. 49, including the southeast quarter of Dryden village, came and lived for a long time upon his lot, and one of his descendants, Daniel Lawson, a pensioner of the War of the Rebellion, still owns and occupies a small part of it.

The town having been surveyed in 1790 and the lots being drawn in 1791, the next question was how were these possessions in the wilderness of the Military Tract to be reached. The first settlers had already arrived at Owego and Elmira by way of the Susquehanna and Chemung rivers, while others had come to Syracuse and Auburn by way of the Mohawk and Seneca rivers and the lakes, and settlements had been commenced in and about Ithaca and Lansing, on the banks of Cayuga Lake, by parties who had taken these routes, but there was no direct practicable way to reach from the east the elevated watershed lying between the two, until a road was cut through the woods from Oxford on the Chenango River to Ithaca at the head of Cayuga Lake, which was done in the years 1793, 1794 and 1795 by Joseph Chaplin under a contract from the State. Mr. Chaplin was the first settler in the town of Virgil and we quote from Bouton's History of that town, pages 9 and 10, concerning him and his work as follows :

"To facilitate the settlement of this section of the country, a road was projected connecting Oxford with the Cayuga Lake, to pass through this town [Virgil.] Joseph Chaplin, the first inhabitant, was intrusted with this work. The instrument by which he was authorized to engage in it was authenticated on the fifth of May, 1792. He spent that season in exploring and surveying the route, the length of which is about sixty miles. He came to Lot No. 50 [of Virgil], which he owned and afterward settled, erected a house and prosecuted his work, having a woman to keep the house and cook for workmen. The work of cutting and clearing the road was done in 1793-4; so that he moved his family from Oxford over it in the winter of 1794-5, employing six or seven sleighs freighted with family, furniture, provisions, etc."

But it seems that when he had complete the road as far as Virgil he was persuaded by some settlers from Kidder's Ferry (near Ludlowville) to continue the road from Virgil through to that point, as it then contained more inhabitants than Ithaca. Having done so he presented his bill to the Legislature, which rejected it on the ground that he had not complied with the terms of his contract, which required the road to be built to Ithaca. He then returned and in the year 1795 cut the road through from Virgil to Ithaca known as the "Bridle Road," and thus became entitled to his pay, the first road opened by him being now known as the old State Road, extending between the towns of Dryden and Groton and through Lansing to the Lake.

The foregoing is the version of this matter which has appeared in the local histories previously published, but it is now claimed, with better reason as it seems to us and more consistently with the conditions which are known to have existed, that the Bridle Road was the trial route first partly opened by Chaplin, and which the state government refused to accept because it did not terminate as required by the contract at a point on Cayuga Lake, the early Ithaca settlement being at least a mile from the nearest shore; and that he then fulfilled the letter of his contract by afterwards opening the old State Road to Kidder's Ferry, leaving the first route only a bridle path which Capt. Robertson, as we shall see hereafter, was obliged to widen in order to reach with ox teams by way of Ithaca his site on Lot 53 of Dryden.

We are told that in this work of cutting these new roads through the wilderness, Mr. Chaplin was assisted by his step-son, then a young man, Gideon Messenger by name, who is the ancestor of the present Messenger family of Dryden and the uncle of H. J. Messenger, of Cortland. From Bouton's History we learn that this same Gideon Messenger was the first town clerk of Virgil in 1795, afterwards its supervisor, and that he passed over the State Road from State Bridge, in the eastern part of Virgil, to Cayuga Lake, before there was a single habitation in the whole distance. (Bouton's Supplement, page 39.)

Goodrich, George B. The Centennial History of the Town of Dryden, 1797-1897. Dryden: Dryden Herald Steam Printing House, 1898. Reprinted 1993 by the Dryden Historical Society. Pages 6-10.

(The Dryden Historical Society, which sells this book, may be reached at 607-844-9209.)

Posted by simon at 4:19 PM Comment

Youth and Recreation at May Town Board meeting

Dryden Youth Commission Chair Tracey Kurtz presented the Commission's 2003 Annual Report to the Town Board.

Tracey Kurtz presents the Dryden Youth Commission Annual Report
Tracey Kurtz presents the Dryden Youth Commission Annual Report

Kurtz came back later in the meeting to propose that the board remove the Dryden Schools Athletic Director from the Dryden Recreation Commission, where the position has a permanent seat. Councilman Marty Christofferson was concerned that this would reduce the connections between the schools and the Recreation Commission, but Councilman Stelick said that the decision to include the Athletic Director was made before there was a Recreation Coordinator, and that the Athletic Director now works more with the coordinator than the commission. Because the Athletic Director doesn't come to meetings, the commission has difficulty reaching a quorum. The school district and Athletic Director have been involved in discussions of the bylaw changes. There were concerns about the difficulty of reading the bylaw changes required and sorting them out, so the board held the issue for future discussion.

Kurtz also recommended hiring Eric Hoffman to be Recreation Assistant, using funds already within the recreation budget.

As Recreation Coordinator Jennifer Glaab couldn't make the meeting, Steve Stelick read the recreation report. Councilman Christofferson gave a brief report on Dryden modified lacrosse's 2-1 win in a scrimmage against Bath and their 8-3 loss to Horseheads.

Stelick noted a proposal to lease space from the Baden-Powell Council of Boy Scouts to cover the time before a new town hall is available. The council authorized the supervisor to negotiate a lease.

A proposal for canoes on Dryden Lake met less approval. TC3 is offering canoes, which will Stelick hoped would be an improvement on "less than quality" boats the town offered through a contractor in the past. There was discussion of a $2000 canoe rack - and whether that would be a permanent structure needing Conservation Board approval. Councilman Mike Hattery, noting that personnel costs were a lot of the proposal, wondered if a more limited program was appropriate. Councilman Chris Michaels felt that people who were into canoeing would likely be going to other venues, while people learning about canoeing would probably want more guidance than this proposal offered. The proposal was held for further consideration.

Posted by simon at 8:02 PM Comment

May 24, 2004

New Dryden school offices

Today's Ithaca Journal has a brief article on the Dryden school district offices' move to the High School/Middle School, as well as a report on a state BOCES championship in which two Dryden High School students, Daniel Carpenter and Bert Barned, won awards.

On the opinion page, there's a duplicate of a letter that was published Saturday supporting Sherwood Boehlert in the primary for the 24th Congressional District, which includes Dryden.

Posted by simon at 7:56 AM Comment

May infrastructure issues

The May Town Board meeting opened with a hearing on amendments to the local law on siting telecommunications towers, changing the rules to encourage the shared use of existing towers. No one spoke on the matter, and eventually it passed 5-0.

During Citizens' Privilege, Peggy Walbridge asked about the upcoming work on Hunt Hill and Genung roads. Highway Superintendent Jack Bush wasn't at this meeting, but engineer Dave Putnam reported that he's done some pencil sketches, and they are assembling the information to share with citizens. Councilman Marty Christofferson asked if they could have it done by the next board meeting, as it was "time to get this thing squared away."

Putnam also discussed plans for extending the highway department garage another 80 feet back from the existing structure. The money is in the highway budget, so the Town Board will only need to approve it if it goes over budget.

Putnam also discussed ongoing work around the F & T Distributing relocation from its current site to Royal Road, which is currently tied up in water and sewer issues. The area where they're building is not in a water or sewer district, and a parcel away from the existing system. There had been discussion of creating a new set of districts there, and surrounding users seemed interested, but actually creating a district will take longer than F & T has.

The current proposal is to have F & T build its own connections, and have the town buy the connections (at a depreciated price) as part of the district when that happens. The previous Town Board had budgeted for a study to determine how to do this and what it would cost. The board was hearing a preliminary report on that, though time is running out.

F & T was wishing that the preliminary survey they had now was more of a comprehensive survey. "From a businessowner's perspective, building water and sewer and having the town buy it at some point, that's somewhat acceptable, though I'd ask for a dollar-for-dollar reimbursement on it because that will hold the town to some sort of schedule. If we don't have some sort of committed timeline, and the town puts it off, and takes over in year 11..." and at this point the town doesn't know how much it will cost.

F & T needs its hookup by July to move, and negotiations and surveys will continue.

Later in the meeting, something that may have an effect on future infrastructure needs, the board appointed Thomas Quinn to the Zoning Board of Appeals. Quinn had applied last year, after Zoning Officer Henry Slater had given him an application. Slater had talked to Quinn over the course of his moving to the community and building a house, and thought he was an excellent candidate. The board approved the appointment 5-0.

Posted by simon at 7:25 PM Comment

May 25, 2004

Assessment hearings today; power outages

The Ithaca Journal reports that the Tompkins County Board of Assessment Review is meeting today to review 290 scheduled grievances plus walk-ins. Scheduled sessions are from 10am to 2pm, while unscheduled sessions are from 4pm to 8pm. Both will be held at the Department of Assessment's offices in the second floor of 128 East Buffalo Street (map).

Yesterday's storms also knocked out power in some parts of Dryden, though fortunately we didn't have the tornados or lightning strikes on gas lines seen elsewhere in the state.

Posted by simon at 7:52 AM Comment

Storm water report

Most of my Town Board reporting this month has been late because I've been too busy to get to it. Today's story is a little different, in that I'm lucky to have waited for the final draft of the Town of Dryden Storm Water Management Program Annual Report (747KB PDF, or 16KB executive summary).

Town Environmental Planning Debbie Gross gave a presentation on the plan at the May Town Board meeting as part of a required public hearing on the plan. Because the Town of Dryden contains parts of the Ithaca-Tompkins County Urbanized area - running roughly from Etna to Varna and the airport, as well as along the south side of Route 79 in Bethel Grove, the town is required by New York State to develop a stormwater plan for those areas. (The state is now providing funding for work on these plans.) Except for "illicit discharge detection and elimination," the town is implementing the plan for the whole town, not just the area considered urban.

Debbie Gross presents the draft storm water plan
Environmental Planner Debbie Gross presents the draft storm water plan.

Gross explained that the increased interest in storm water as an issue that needs to be address was tied to increasing development, as paved and otherwise built surfaces can have a dramatic impact on runoff, increasing it up to 45%. The runoff can cause erosion and carry pollution, spreading problems across a wide area.

The project itself covers five years, starting with last year, 2003. In year 1, most of the activity was data collection, hiring an environmental planner, and promoting public awareness. Year 2 will focus on required ordinances for controlling runoff, as well as further public outreach, on topics like septic system maintenance, post-construction stormwater management, and lawn care. It also includes discussion of watershed management and flood mitigation. The Town of Caroline is also paying for some of the Dryden Environmental Planner's work in this area.

The full report (747KB PDF) has an incredible amount of detail if you have the time to explore it.

Posted by simon at 7:46 PM Comment

May 26, 2004

All kinds of Dryden news

Today's Ithaca Journal has lots and lots of Dryden-related news.

The lead story is on the Dryden School Board's efforts to develop a new budget after the tie vote on the previous one. Developing that budget seemed difficult to start with. The board will take action June 2nd, and the second budget vote is June 22nd.

In the Our Towns section, there's a profile of 11-year-old Nick Patte, a goodwill ambassador for for the Central New York Muscular Dystrophy Association, who has had Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy since he was 22 months old.

This week's Dryden Town Talk looks at work being done at Willow Glen Cemetery, financed by an anonymous donor, and notes Saturday's Memorial Day parade.

Briefly in Dryden includes a Dryden alumni dinner June 12th, a "Support Our Troops!" motorcycle ride June 6th, the Varna United Methodist Church's chicken barbecue on June 5th, and Dryden Dairy Day on June 12th.

The print edition also includes a Community Profile of Adam Pamel, an Eagle Scout candidate raising funds and donations to provide K-2 students with school supplies.

The Auburn Citizen also has more news on the 24th Congressional District race, looking more closely at letters to the editor falsified by a volunteer for the Walrath campaign. (David Walrath is challenging incumbent Sherwood Boehlert in the Republican primary for the district, which includes Dryden.)

Posted by simon at 8:32 AM Comment

Gas prices and Dryden

When I was at Town Hall a couple of weeks ago, there was talk that local gas stations had been told to order '3' signs to be ready just in case gas went over $3.00 a gallon. That thought has been echoing for me for a while, and I think it's worth considering what that might mean here.

Today's gas prices
Today's gas prices at the Exxon at Routes 13 and 366.

Dryden in its current state depends quite thoroughly on cars, trucks, and the gasoline they consume. As I noted a long time ago, my own house, even though it was built in 1929, really only makes sense if you expect to have a car. According to a recent table in the Ithaca Journal, 48.87% of the town's employed residents have a 15-30 minute commute. That's a lot of gasoline every day. (The 3.81% with an hour or more commute must be especially unhappy with prices right now.)

My first question is how much impact higher prices will have on people's driving habits, even if the prices stay high for a long time. These prices are still (if adjusted for inflation) lower than they were in 1980, though that doesn't make people happy when the notice the price has climbed by a third or more in six months. Despite the unhappiness, a lot of the driving here isn't particularly optional - it's commuting to work and grocery shopping. While those activities may get more expensive, I don't expect them to change by much, at least for a while.

In the longer run, I'm guessing that people will be more likely to change their car - if they can - than their house. More efficient cars are available, though whether people will change types of cars is a bigger question. More people may work at home (I already do that), which is another way to cut gas bills substantially. It's also possible to combine trips, carpool, ride the bus, mow the lawn less often...

If this lasts - which sounds possible, given generally rising demand for oil worldwide - I suspect Dryden may see some changes in housing patterns. There may be more opportunities for smaller grocery and other stores that carry fewer items but take less driving, and people may find it more convenient to live nearer centers of employment. The strategy of encouraging development at transportation nodes seems a lot more likely to work when car-based transportation is more expensive.

The Town Draft Comprehensive Plan looks forward "to 2020 and beyond". I don't think its creators can make predictions about transportation trends or their impacts on development, but it does make me wonder if future development might be less scattered than the New Home Construction map for 1985-2000 (256KB PDF).

Posted by simon at 12:43 PM Comment

Upcoming hearings

Today's Ithaca Journal legal notices include:

  • a hearing of the Tompkins County Industrial Development Agency on June 28th at 10am at the Dryden Town Hall (map) to consider assisting Ithaca Produce's move to new facilities at 150 Johnson Road (map).
  • a public hearing at 7pm on June 10th by the Dryden Town Board for a new 83' telecommunications tower and associated 10'x20' shed at 1387 Dryden Road (map). Crown Castle Atlantic Co., LLC. is the applicant.
  • a public hearing at 7:15pm on June 10th by the Dryden Town Board for amendments to a site plan approved back in July 2000 for 1495 Dryden Road (map), for an automotive sales and detailing facility. Stewart and Jeffery Marrotte are the applicants.
Posted by simon at 7:43 PM Comment

May 27, 2004

Journal on fire company finances, superintendents

Today's Ithaca Journal catches up on the long-running story of audits of fire companies in the Dryden Fire Protection District. They report that the Etna audit, the last to be done, is in progress, while the Varna, Neptune, and W. B. Strong audits are complete. (I posted the audit report (2.6MB PDF) for the companies completed so far in March.)

The Journal reports on various post-audit changes at the departments, including formalizing procedures and a lease at Neptune, changes in the Varna investments and their hiring of an accountant, and Freeville's hiring an accountant to file tax returns, something they hadn't done previously. (As a non-profit, they don't owe taxes, but they are obligated to file.)

The main objection to the audit in the article (from Councilman Steve Stelick, Neptune President Dan Tier, and Neptune Chief Ron Flynn) seems to be cost, which feels strange after the years of conflict and last year's 31.8% fire tax levy increase, relatively little of which was audit-related. I certainly don't object to spending money on fire protection, and thought Varna's spending this year reasonable, but this is worth questioning. Audits are certainly an inconvenience for all involved, but they let people see where their tax dollars go, and provide a foundation for figuring out where to put the next round of tax dollars.

Hopefully the new Town Board and the companies, free of the rancor of past years, can use the full picture provided by the audit information to make plans for the fire protection district that keep both the companies and the taxpayers happy.

The Journal's editorial today looks back over the careers of Dryden Superintendent Pat Archambault and Trumansburg Superintendent John Delaney, both of whom are retiring this summer. The story of Archambault's working her way up through education is impressive. Delaney has a quote worth consideration beyond the Trumansburg School District:

"I can tell you that using property tax to fund public agencies has got to be revamped," he said. "I think that land as a measure of wealth isn't the indicator that it was 50 years ago. Today, you can own a lot of land and not have much income -- or you can have a very high income without owning much property."

There's also a letter from Natasha Suter of Dryden, urging people to follow the news and providing "Web sites that contain news stories either poorly covered by the mainstream media or not covered at all." Republicans, of course, may not like her choices of sites.

Posted by simon at 8:08 AM Comment

Work in progress at Freese Road

While the Freese Road bridge is open again, there's still work being done on the sewer pump on the south side of the bridge.

Continuing sewer work, Freese Road
Sewer work gets closer to completion at Freese Road bridge.

There was mention at a Town Board meeting this spring that they'll have to replace insulation on the pipe along the Freese Road bridge that carries water from Sapsucker Woods to Varna. I can see why.

Missing insulation, Freese Road bridge
Insulation missing from the water pipe that crosses Freese Road bridge.

Posted by simon at 5:12 PM Comment

New Town Hall news

This week's Dryden Courier features an article on prospects for a new Town Hall, a project that's been in the works for a while but which was deferred to executive session at the May Town Board meeting. It seems there's a problem: the recent annexation of a parcel to the Village has increased the price of land in that parcel from $38,000/acre to $65,000/acre - and the Town had been hoping to build its new Town Hall there. Other possible buyers are now waiting for the town to make an offer, if it decides to do so.

The town has eliminated the Boy Scouts building on Route 13 (until recently the Dryden School District offices), the Prudential Insurance building on Routes 13 and 366, the old Boxcar restaurant, and the former West Dryden Community Center, now owned by Hobasco Masonic Lodge.

The town is considering the Aramark building (formerly Fine Host), along Route 13, though that has some problems, most notably no public water. Councilman Steve Stelick notes that municipal buildings are required to have sprinkler systems, which could mean large insulated tanks if public water is not available.

(I wonder if the town might consider the old State Police building or the current location of F & T Distributing, which they're leaving to move to Royal Road. Both have water and sewer available.)

The Courier also takes a look at Freeville Girl Scout Troop 864's "Cell Phones for Soldiers" campaign and tells of Daniel Armitage's presentation this month at the Dryden Historical Society. There's also a piece on "Primitive Pursuits Day," to be held at 4-H acres this Saturday, May 29th. There's also a "Summer Between the Lakes" supplement, with stories and listings of things to do this summer.

The Courier's sister paper, the Ithaca Times, has an article on Nicholas Patte, the Dryden fourth-grader who is a goodwill ambassador for the Muscular Dystrophy Association, as well as an extended piece on the state of Tompkins County Airport.

Posted by simon at 8:10 PM Comment

May 28, 2004

Indictments and opinions

The Ithaca Journal reports on the indictments of two Dryden residents, one for rape and another for second-degree criminal possession of a weapon tied to an incident in Ithaca's Stewart Park.

There's a story on Alan Chaffee, who's visited cemeteries and recorded names "from Dryden to Horseheads." An article on a prescription discount card in Chemung County sounds much like a proposal County Legislator Martha Robertson is working on for Tompkins.

On the opinion page, Nancy Morgan of Dryden points out that liberal and conservative labels don't mean what they used to, and a guest column by Fred Antil on Cornell and Ithaca College talks about George C. Williams, a Dryden resident and IC president who did a lot to build IC up, and also accepted a Cornell student's challenge of a fencing match.

Posted by simon at 7:35 AM Comment

Parade tomorrow

The Dryden Veterans Memorial Home's Memorial Day parade will be held tomorrow, Saturday, May 29th at 10:30am in the Village of Dryden, with a memorial service at 11am in tribute to World War II veterans.

Looks like a perfect day for it.

Posted by simon at 1:16 PM Comment

May 29, 2004

Solar school

I saw this poster at the McDonalds/Mobil station in the Village of Dryden on Thursday:

Tompkins County's first solar-powered school
Poster advertising Tompkins County's first solar-powered school

Following the web link in the poster took me to a description of how this works. Like other state-funded energy programs I've mentioned previously, this comes from NYSERDA, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority.

The 2-kilowatt solar collector, which connects to the grid and the school's regular electrical system, cost about $24,000, of which $1500 came from the school district. It won't power the whole school - normally it would cover a quarter of the energy usage of a house - but it will contribute some power as well as educational opportunities for students. The Ithaca, Lansing, McGraw, and Spencer-VanEtten districts are also participating in the program.

The dedication will be on Friday, June 11th, from 7:30pm to 9:30pm at the Dryden High School.

Posted by simon at 10:32 AM Comment

May 30, 2004

Superintendent retirement, county legislation

Yesterday's Ithaca Journal has an article on Dryden Superintendent Patricia Archambault's upcoming retirement, looking over her last five years in Dryden as well as a career that went from South Seneca to Newfield through BOCES and around the state to Dryden. The Dryden Elementary PTA will be hosting a farewell reception for her on Wednesday, June 16th, from 7pm-8:30pm at the Dryden Elementary School cafeteria.

Dryden County Legislator Mike Lane will be introducing a resolution to shift re-assessment from its current annual cycle to a cycle of three years. It didn't get moved on in the Government Operations Committee. There will also be a vote on putting the Republicans' County Executive proposal on the ballot in November. (I still don't see the point in that one.)

In less pleasant news, a 14-year boy from Freeville was killed when he ran a stop sign on an ATV, while a Dryden woman has been charged with second-degree forgery.

In Laurels and Darts, Dryden resident Murray Cohen sends presidential candidate Ralph Nader a dart for "making it easier for George Bush to continue as the most powerful person in the world."

The Journal has a lot of articles on Tompkins County World War II veterans in honor of the World War II memorial's dedication. None of them explicitly mention Dryden, but the stories of Bill Alford, Hugh Corrigan, Charles Hurlbut, John Belcher, Sr., and Roy Bair are well worth reading.

Posted by simon at 10:07 AM Comment

Dryden in the Civil War

There are no longer any Civil War veterans among us, but their sacrifices are no less worth remembering. George Goodrich examines the impact of the "War of the Rebellion" in the Town of Dryden, the units from Dryden, the support their community provided, and the battles they fought.

Chapter XVIII.

The War of the Rebellion.

It is now easy to see in the light of history that in their efforts to preserve and perpetuate the institution of slavery, the Southern States by their attempted secession hastened its doom to speedy abolition. Slavery might have been one of the perplexing subjects of politics today had not the crisis been precipitated by the commencement of hostilities in April, 1861.

It will be difficult for succeeding generations to realize with what anxiety and interest the investment and capture of Fort Sumpter and the subsequent progress of the war were watched by the people of Dryden in common with the inhabitants of all of the states of the North. No railroads or telegraph then served to deliver the war news within the town of Dryden. The only mail which was then received was brought by the daily stages from Ithaca and Cortland, meeting at Dryden village at noon. The New York daily papers of the morning would in this way reach Dryden the next day at noon, when the first news was obtained, unless, as was frequently the case, a messenger was dispatched by private contributors to Cortland, the nearest railroad and telegraph station in those times, to bring back the latest news late in the evening. Those who remember how anxiously the tidings of war were watched for, will call to mind with what feelings of disappointment the frequent stereotyped response was received, "All quiet on the Potomac."

The capture of Fort Sumpter by the Confederates served immediately to strengthen and unite the people of the North in their determination to preserve the Union with or without slavery at first, but finally only with the complete abolition of that troublesome institution. For that purpose a large part of the Democratic party, known as "War Democrats," united with the government in its effort to preserve the Union and with that determination stood by it until the termination of the war, while the remaining Democrats, who opposed the war, or professed to be indifferent on the subject, were openly denounced and branded as "Copper-heads."

The first volunteers to go into the military service from our town joined some companies organized in Ithaca, which were afterward united at New York with others to form the 32nd Infantry, with which they went to the front in June, 1861. Among these volunteers was Captain Sylvester H. Brown, who was killed at City Point, Va. This regiment enlisted for only two years, but saw severe service, participating in the battles of West Point, Gaines Mills, White Oak Swamp, Malvern Hill, Crompton Gap, Antietam, and Fredericksburg. After their term of two years had expired many of the survivors re-enlisted in other regiments. In the fall and winter of that year the 76th regiment was organized, of which companies F. and C. were largely recruited from the town of Dryden. This organization had an unfortunate beginning, growing out of a personal quarrel between Col. Green and one of his subordinate officers, resulting in the shooting and wounding of the latter, while they were encamped at Cortland. Afterwards the 76th, under Col. Wainwright, did valiant service and took part in the battles of Rappahannock Station, Warrenton, Gainesville, Second Bull Run, South Mountain, Antietam, Upperville, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg and Mine Run.

The early campaigns of the Union forces in Virginia were not successful. Such disasters as the battle of Bull Run served to convince the people of the North that greater efforts had to be made. War meetings were held in all parts of the county, attended with bands of music and patriotic speakers. At these meetings liberal contributions were made for the aid of the families of such as should go to the front. A senatorial war committee was appointed, of which our late townsman, Jeremiah W. Dwight, was the member from this county, and a local town committee was selected, consisting of Luther Griswold, Smith Robertson, Charles Givens, Thomas J. McElheny, and W. W. Snyder.

In the summer of 1862 the 109th regiment was organized, Company F. being largely made up of Dryden volunteers. It was mustered into Service August 28, 1862, but was kept on guard duty for the first year and more. Its first fight was in the terrible battle of the Wilderness when more than one hundred of its men were left upon the field of battle. Spottsylvania, Cold Harbor and the battles before Petersburg followed in quick succession, in all of which this regiment made a gallant record, but suffered severely, so that when they came to be mustered out of the service in June, 1865, there were only two hundred and fifty men left of the twelve hundred which first went into the Wilderness.

In October, 1862, the 143d regiment, of which one company was made up mostly of Dryden men under Capt. Harrison Marvin, was mustered into service. Although this regiment did not see such severe service it had an honorable record and its roll of honor bore the following inscriptions: Nansemond, Wanhatchie, Lookout Mountain, Chattanooga, Knoxville, Resaca, Dallas, Kenesaw Mountain, Culpepper Farm, Peach Tree Ridge, Atlanta and Savannah.

Capt. Geo. L. Truesdell with quite a number of other Dryden men joined early in 1864 the 15th New York Cavarly, which was organized from August 8, 1863, to January 14, 1864, to serve for three years. Nine companies were recruited at Syracuse, one at Elmira, one at Cavalry Depot, Washington, D. C., and one in the state of New York at large. It was consolidated with the Sixth New York Cavalry June 17th, 1865, and the consolidated force designated the Second Provisional New York Cavalry. Col. Robert M. Richardson resigned Jan. 19, 1865, leaving in command Col. John J. Coppinger. The regiment lost by death during its service in killed during action, three officers and eighteen men; of wounds received in action, nineteen men; of disease and other causes, four officers and 129 men; a grand total of one hundred seventy men. It was at Hillsboro, Upperville, Franklin, Romney, New Market, Front Royal, Newton, Mount Jackson, Piedmont, Stanton, Waynesboro, Lexington, New London, Diamond Hill, Lynchburg, Snicker's Gap, Ashby's Gap, Winchester, Green Spring, and the Appomattox campaign.

The early enlistments were all volunteers aided and encouraged at first by liberal provisions for the families of those who should enlist, and afterwards by large bounties in addition, to the soldier himself. Only one draft was made in the town, which was executed in July, 1863, according to the terms of which the drafted man himself could hire a substitute to go in his place or, by paying three hundred dollars, the government would provide the substitute. A second and third draft was ordered but the supervisors of the county here came to the rescue and hired, at the expense of the county, enough non-resident soldiers to make up, with those who had volunteered, the full quota of the towns of Tompkins county.

We regret that we are not able to make our military record more complete, having given only a brief reference to the companies which were made up almost wholly of Dryden men. Many others were scattered through different regiments and in all branches of the service, and we supplement this brief record by the following chapter, which aims to give a complete list of the Dryden soldiers, specifying those who died or were severely wounded in the service.

Goodrich, George B. The Centennial History of the Town of Dryden, 1797-1897. Dryden: Dryden Herald Steam Printing House, 1898. Reprinted 1993 by the Dryden Historical Society. Pages 52-55.

(The Dryden Historical Society, which sells this book, may be reached at 607-844-9209.)

Posted by simon at 10:09 AM Comment

May 31, 2004

Fire contract revisions

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that the Town Board had authorized the Supervisor to revise contracts with the Fire Companies. I now have three of the contracts in their original and revised forms:

In the originals, clauses 16 and 17 read:

17. The Town may request an independent audit or review, no more than once per year, of the financial affairs of the Company for the present and/or prior years as the Town may determine. The form, content and Certified Public Accountant performing such audit or review shall be determined by the Town. The Town shall pay the direct costs of the Company related to such audit or review not to exceed $1,000.00, which costs are to be documented by the Company. The Company agrees to make diligent and reasonable efforts to fully, completely and timely comply with reasonable requests of the Certified Public Accountant performing such audit or review for the production of all records, receipts, bills, vouchers, contracts, bank statements, checks, financial statements and any other similar documents requested by such person.
18. The Company agrees to establish a capital equipment reserve account to purchase capital equipment. The Company agrees that $______ of the first payment made under this contract shall be deposited into said account and the use of such funds shall be restricted by the Company to capital equipment purchases.

At the April 8th meeting, Councilman Marty Christofferson requested changes to these clauses. The contracts were reissued to say:

17. The Town may request an independent audit or review, no more than once per year, of the financial affairs of the Company for the present and/or prior years as the Town may determine. The form, content and Certified Public Accountant performing such audit or review shall be determined by the Town. The Town shall pay for the services, costs and disbursements of the auditor and the Company shall have no responsibility for any such items. The Town shall pay the direct costs of the Company related to such audit or review not to exceed $1,000.00, which costs are to be documented by the Company. The Company agrees to make diligent and reasonable efforts to fully, completely and timely comply with reasonable requests of the Certified Public Accountant performing such audit or review for the production of all records, receipts, bills, vouchers, contracts, bank statements, checks, financial statements and any other similar documents requested by such person.
18. The Company agrees to establish a capital equipment reserve account to purchase capital equipment. The Company agrees that $______ of the first payment made under this contract shall be deposited into said account and the use of such funds shall be restricted by the Company to capital equipment purchases and to borrowing from for only unforeseen emergency major expenses.

Additions are in bold. The issue of repayment terms for the borrowing allowed in Clause 18, raised by Councilman Chris Michaels at the April meeting, seems to have been left unaddressed.

Posted by simon at 9:57 AM Comment

Individuals in the Civil War

Yesterday I posted Goodrich's general remembrances of the Civil War. Today's entry follows that one with his list of soldiers from Dryden who fought in the Civil War and, where possible, describes what happened to them. I've only included the first page of tables on the front page of the blog because this is such a long list, but it's well worth clicking the link to continue and reading the whole thing, including the brief story on women in the war at the end.

Chapter XVIII.

Personal Record of Dryden Soldiers

The preparation of this chapter has involved no small amount of labor, and great care has been taken to make it correct and complete. Still there are, doubtless, some errors and omissions; but the following data arranged in tabular form will, it is hoped, at least serve as a basis from which a more perfect record shall be made at some time in the future. If happily "grim visaged war" shall never again make its imperative demands upon the town of Dryden, its inhabitants of the rising and future generations will never fully realize what it is to have the lives of the father, brother, and sons of the people of the township exposed to the hazards of camp and of battle and sacrificed in the service of their country.

Thomas J. McElheny, one of the war committee of Dryden who gave his time very fully in those years to the details of filling the quotas of soldiers required by the government from this town, relates with pardonable pride the experiences which he had in performing his arduous duties in these matters and bears witness to the liberality and patriotism manifested by the people in sustaining his efforts.

No attempt is made in this chapter to complete the record of non-resident volunteers who were induced by the liberal bounties offered by the town of Dryden to help fill out her quota and when Dryden men had removed to other places before their enlistment their names will not be likely to be found in the following table:

Aiken, Joseph,A32 Inf.June 2, '612discharged at expiration of the term
Allen, Timothy,F15 Art.Mar. 27, '613discharged at the close of the war
Apgar, John G.,C76 Inf. Sept., '613transferred to Veteran Reserve Corps.
Arnold, A.S.,non-resident.
Arnold, Chadiah,143 Inf.discharged with regiment.
Arnold, C.S.,non-resident.
Arnold, John S.,non-resident.
Arnold, John D.,non-resident.
Arnold, Seneca S.,non-resident.
Bachelder, Erastus,A127 Inf.Aug. 15, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Baker, Edwin,E21 Cav.Feb. 20, '633discharged at Elmira, July '65.
Baldwin, Wm.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Ballard, Gabriel B.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Barber, Andrew J.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623died of wound received at Spottsylvania, May, '64.
Bartholomew, Norman G., capt.,F76 Inf.Nov. 24, '613killed at Wilderness May 6, '64, buried at Etna.
Bartlett, D. Webster,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged for disability, Dec. '62.
Barton, D. Webster, lt.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623killed at Spottsylvania, May 12, '64.
Barton, Wm. H.F76 Inf.Sept., '61wounded at Gainesville, died Feb., '63.
Bates, Otis A., serg.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Bellington, Geo.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '62discharged for disability April 10, '63.
Bergin, John E.,lt.,I109 Inf.Aug. 27, '62promoted to lieutentant U.S. Light Infantry.
Bessy, Peter,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623died of disease at Nashville, '64.
Bishop, D. C.E21 Cav.Feb. 24, '643discharged at Denver, July 8, '66.
Bloom, H. E.,F15 Art.Feb. 21, '643died of disease at Clarysville, Md., Jan. 15, '64.
Bosworth, Alfonso,non-resident.
Bouton, Clinton D., corp.,F76 Inf.Dec.1, '613discharged at expiration of term
Brigham, Cor. E.,non-resident.
Brigham, Newton,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '62discharged for disability
Brown, Moses179 Inf.Sept., '643died of disease at Petersburg
Brown, Orrin F.,M21 Cav.Dec., '633discharged at Denver, June 10, '66.
Brown, Orson C.,I143 Inf.Aug. 16, '623

Brown, Sylvester H., capt.32 Inf.2killed at City Point, buried at Dryden.
Buchanan, Theodore,F109 Inf.discharged at expiration of term.
Bull, Ambrose S.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623wounded Spottsylvania, discharged close of war.
Bull, James C.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623died of disease
Bull, John E.,I15 Cav.June, '643discharged at Louisville, Aug., '65
Burch, Thomas J.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '62discharged at New York
Burton, James H.,I15 Cav.Feb. 21, '643discharged at Louisville, August, '65.
Burton, Orrin F.,M21 Cav.Dec., '633discharged at Denver, June 10, '66.
Burton, Orrin W.,F76 Inf.pris. Wilderness, Andersonv. 7 mo., dis. close war.
Burton, Varnum,E32 Inf.June 2, '612dis. at expiration of term, re-enlisted in cavalry.
Burton, Varnum, corp.,I15 Cav.Feb, '6432 terms, 15 battles, prisoner, dis. close of war.
Caldwell, A. A.,G76 Inf.July 28, '633discharged at the close of war.
Caldwell, D. V., serg.,F76 Inf.Dec., '613discharged for disability, November 26, '62
Card, Chester,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623prisoner, May 12, '64, died at Andersonville
Card, James J.,F76 Inf.3killed at Gettysburg, July 3, '63
Carmer, Oliver P.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623prisoner Spottsylvania, survived Andersonville
Carmer, Thomas J.,3
Carpenter, Hubert, adj.,F76 Inf.Dec. '613wounded Gettysburg, July 3, '63; killed Wilderness, May 7, '64
Carr, Peter,I15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643
Casar, Franklin,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623
Casey, William,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged for disability, July 3, '63.
Casterline, Chas. R.,non-resident.
Chaffee, Benj.,non-resident.
Chaffee, Nathaniel B.,non-resident.
Chaffee, S.A.,non-resident.
Chaffee, Wm. D.,non-resident.
Chambers, Amos,143 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged at Mound City, Ill., March 4, '65.
Chapman, E.K137 Inf.Sept. 24, '633discharged at the close of the war.
Clark, Alonzo W.,E32 Inf.June 2, '612died of disease at New York city, June 12, '61
Clark, Jacob C.died before muster.
Cliff, Henry, serg.F76 Inf.Sept., '613pro. to. lt. 1863, lost leg at Gettysburg, July 3, '63.
Cole, Robert,I143 Inf.3discharged for disability.

Conklin, Nathaniel,F109 Inf.Aug.27, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Cook, Enos,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623died of disease at Chattanooga, December 18, '63.
Cook, James H.,A10 Cav.Dec. 31, '633discharged at the close of the war.
Cook, James O.,E64 Inf.Sept. 26, '613discharged for disability, December 1, '62.
Cook, James O., corp.,M21 Cav.Feb. 14, '643discharged at Denver, July 9, '66.
Copely, James W.,I143 Inf.3transferred to Veteran Reserve Corps.
Cornelius, Wm.,I15 Cav.Feb. 9, '643discharged at Louisville at the close of the war.
Cramer, Michael,C76 Inf.Dec. '613discharged for disability, December, '62.
Cremer, Martin,F15 Cav.Feb. 3, 643discharged at expiration of term.
Crispell, Merrittnon-resident.
Darling, Joseph.
Dart, John,F76 Inf.Dec., '613died of disease in Maryland.
Davenport, Chas. W.,F15 Cav.Feb. 9, '643discharged at expiration of term.
Davenport, D. D., corp.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Davidson, R. G., serg.,C76 Inf.Nov. 5, '613discharged at expiration of term.
Decker, Rufus W.,E143 Inf.Aug., '623died of disease in South Carolina.
Decker, Walter,C76 Inf.Dec., '613discharged for disability, died soon after.
Depew, John,
Deuel, James M.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623
Deuel, Thaddeus S., corp.,E64 Inf.Oct., '613discharged at expiration of term.
Devanny, Gilbert, serg.,I143 Inf.Oct 8, '623dis. disability from accidental discharge of gun.
Deyo, Moses F.,B5 Art.3discharged at the close of the war.
Dodge, Eugene,F76 Inf.Dec., '613died in Dryden on furlough.
Dodge, Levi,I143 Inf.3
Downey, Robert,I109 Inf.3
Downey, Wm.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623killed by accident on cars, Maryland, Oct., '62.
Draper, Egbert,F76 Inf.Nov. 5, '613discharged at expiration of term.
Draper, Richard,F76 Inf.Nov. 5, '613discharged for disability.
Durkee, Morton E.F109 Inf.3
Dusenberry, O. G.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623killed in skirmish Shenandoah Val., Dec. 21, 64.
Dutcher, Chas. H.F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged for disability.

Edsall, Stephen F.,3non-resident from Pennsylvania
Edsall, Wm.I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at expiration of term.
Edwards, Pattison,F76 Inf.Nov. 5, '613discharged for disability Nov. 11, '62
Eldridge, Daniel,C75 Inf.3
Ellis, Chas. B.F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged at expiration of term.
Ellis, Orrin E., serg.,F76 Inf.Nov. 5, '613died from disease March 24, '62.
English, Thomas,B21 Cav.Feb. 1, '643discharged at Denver, June 10, '66.
Evans, Earl, capt.,F76 Inf.Sept., '613re-enlisted and served thro' war, promoted capt.
Farquhar, John,M21 Cav.Nov., 633died from wounds, March 18, '65.
Farrell, Andrew,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623
Ferris, David,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623
Ferris, John J.I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged for disability June 5, '63.
Fischer, Willet;I143 Inf.Oct 8, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Fitts, Chas. T,F76 Inf.Dec 5, '613discharged for disability
Fitts, Chas. T,E179 Inf.Sept. 17, '643wounded shoulder Sept 30, '64, head Apr. 2, '65, dis. close war.
Fitts, Henry W.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623died of disease, Lookout Valley, January 11, '63.
Fogarty, JohnI143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged for disability April 20, '65.
Forrest, Cyrenus,non-resident from Pennsylvania.
Fox, M. B.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged for disability August 20, '63.
Fox, Wm. C.A76 Inf.Nov. 24, '613died from wounds received at Gettysburg July 3, 65.
Freeman, Chas. D.I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623missed near Lookout Mountain December 20, '63.
Freese, Chauncey A.F15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643discharged at the close of the war.
Freese, Henry,C76 Inf.Dec. 4, '613discharged at expiration of term.
Fulkerson, Henry S.,C76 Inf.Nov. 5, '613killed battle of Gainesville, Va., August 28, '62.
Fulkerson, John G.,E32 Inf.June 6, '612died of disease at Alexandria, December 12, '61.
Gee, W. Riley,F76 Inf.Dec. '613discharged.
George, Wm. Thomas, capt.,A143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623promoted capt., discharged at close of the war.
Godfrey, Chas. P.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623lost leg May 14, '64, discharged May 25, '65.
Gorman, Cyrus B.,
Graham, Philander, serg.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged at expiration of term.
Green, Oliver H.,I15 Cav.Sept. 15, '623discharged at expiration of term.
Griffin, J. F.I15 Cav.Nov. 2, '643

Griffin, Lewis,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged June 30, '63.
Griffin, S. C.,H144 Inf.Aug., '623discharged at the close of the war.
Griswold, Bazaleel F.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623died in Andersonville, July 20, '64.
Griswold, C. Dick,E32 Inf.June 2, '612discharged at expiration of term.
Griswold, C. Dick, corp.,K97 Inf.Oct. 9, '632discharged at expiration of term.
Griswold, D. P., lt.,C76 Inf.Dec., '613pro. lt., wounded Petersburg, leg amp., dis. Mar. 17, '65
Griswold, Nathan L., lt.,F109 Inf.Aug. 26, '623pro. to lt., killed before Petersburg, August 3, '64.
Hackett, John, capt.,32 Inf.May, '612re-enlisted in Michigan regiment.
Hammond, D. B.,I15 Cav.Sept., '643discharged at the close of the war.
Hammond, Edwin,F15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643discharged at the close of the war.
Hammond, Thos. J.,F109 Inf.3re-enlisted in 179th Infantry.
Hammond, Thos. J.,B179 Inf.Feb. 2, '643discharged at the close of the war.
Harned, Geo.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623died at Fortress Monroe, September 28, '63.
Hartsough, Thos. J.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623died of disease at Chattanooga, December 8, '63.
Haskell, B. L.,F15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643discharged at the close of the war.
Haskell, Josiah,F15 Cav.Feb 2, '643discharged at the close of the war.
Haviland, Abbott,143 Inf.3discharged for disability March, '63.
Haviland, Myron,F76 Inf.Sept., '613
Hemmingway, Chauncey,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Hemmingway, Geo. R.,B179 Inf.Sept. 17, '643wounded leg Sept. '64, taken pris, dis. close war.
Hemmingway, Henry H., lt.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Hemmingway, Orlando, serg.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623died of disease October 18, '64.
Hildebrant, Elihu, serg.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, 623discharged at New York city July 27, '65.
Hildebrant, John, capt.,E64 Inf.Sept. 10, '613wounded at the battle of Fair Oaks.
Hill, Osmer J., corp.,F76 Inf.Nov. 5, '613discharged for disability August 10, '62.
Hoffman, Thos. H.,F76 Inf.Sept., '613wounded Gainesville and died from wounds.
Hollenbeck, Albert J.,G76 Inf.Nov. 5, '613wounded and pris. Gettysburg, dis. exp. of term.
Hollenshead, Dan'l R.,143 Inf.3discharged for disability March '64.
Howard, Jerome,B79 Inf.Sept '643discharged at the close of the war.
Howe, Jas. T.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Howser, Chas. L., corp.,B9 Art.Nov. 5, '643died of wounds rec'd at Winchester, Oct. 19, '64.

Hulburt, Edwin R.,F76 Inf.Nov. 5, '613discharged at expiration of term.
Hulslander, Wm. R.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged for disability in '62.
Hunt, Myron H.,E32 Inf.Oct., '623prisoner Fair Oaks, discharged for disability '63.
Hurd, Albert,no record.
Hurd, John W.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged for disability September 30, '63.
Hurley, Elisha, Jr., corp.,I143 Inf.Oct. 17, '623discharged for disability Augsut 7, '64.
Huson, Bowker,F109 Inf.did not enter the service.
Hyde, Benjamin,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, 623killed at Spottsylvania May 12 '64.
Hyde, Chas. W.C76 Inf.3discharged at Washington before actual service.
Hyde, Norman,C76 Inf.3discharged for disability before actual service.
Jackson, Jefferson,no record.
Jagger, Frank, corp.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at expiration of term.
Jones, Lyman,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged at expiration of term.
Kane, Chas.,A179 Inf.Aug. 22, '643discharged at the close of the war.
Kelly, John,no record.
Kennedy, Wm. W., lt.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623pro. 1st serg., 1st lt., w'nded twice, dis. close war.
Kingsley, Monroe,no record.
Kiser, Albert A.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623wounded Peach Tree Creek, July 20, '64, died of wounds, Chattanooga Aug. '64.
Kiser, Jacob,
Kline, Phillip,E21 Cav.3no record.
Knickerbocker, Clay,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged for disability.
Lacy, Geo. L.,F76 Inf.Dec., '613no record.
Lacy, Geo. L.,I15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643taken prisoner, discharged at close of the war.
Lambertson, Jas. E.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged for disability, April 10, '63.
Lambertson, John N.,C76 Inf.Dec. 28, '613discharged for disability, October 28, '62.
Lambertson, Wm.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged for injuries received on cars.
Lamont, Wm.,B179 Inf.Sept. 30, '643discharged at the close of the war.
Lawson, Daniel,M21 Cav.June 2, '643discharged at Fort Leavenworth, August 9, '65.
Lent, Hiram B.,non-resident from Pennsylvania.
Lester, Wm. H., serg.,B8 Col.Nov. 14, '633discharged at Brownsville, Tex. at close of war.
Lindsey, John,F76 Inf.Nov. 5, ''613died of disease at Fredericksburg, June 27, '62.
Lindsey, Obed. H.,I15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643discharged at the close of the war.

Loper, Luciennon-resident from Pennsylvania.
Lormore, Jas. C., serg.,I103 Inf.Mar. 7, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Luckey, A. B.non-resident from Pennsylvania.
Luddington, Flixton,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Lyke, Rufus F.,non-resident from Pennsylvania.
Lyon, Warren H.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged at the close of the war, June 4, '65.
McDermott, James,F155 Inf.Aug. 17, '623wounded Cold Harbor, May 3, '65, died of w'nds soon after.
McDonald, Robert,non-resident from Pennsylvania.
McElheny, Marion F., corp.,I32 Inf.June 2, '612dis. for disability Jan '62, re-enlisted 109 Inf.
McElheny, Marion F., corp.,F109 Inf.wounded at Spottsylvania.
McGregor, Clinton D.,F76 Inf.Nov. 14, '613discharged at expiration of term.
McGregor, Clinton D., serg.,1stV.R.C.May 7, '643wounded at Gainesville, discharged close of war.
McGregor, Daniel,F76 Inf.Nov. 14, '613wounded Gainesville, died of disease Jan. 28, '63.
McHue, James,non-resident from Pennsylvania.
McKee, David,E32 Inf.June 9, '612discharged at expiration of term.
McKee, David,I15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643discharged at expiration of term.
McKinney, Wm.A179 Inf.Sept 17, '643discharged at the close of the war.
McLean, Conrad.F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623wounded at Peterburg, discharged close of war.
McWhorter, J. T., serg.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged for disability, June, '64.
Mack, Halsey,I15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643discharged at the close of the war.
Manchester, J.non-resident from Pennsylvania.
Mariele, Cornelius,G76 Inf.Sept. 3, '613discharged for disability, November, '61.
Marsh, Augustus,I15 Cav.Sept. 3, '633discharged at the close of the war.
Marvin, Harrison, capt.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Mastin, Britton,F75 Inf.Dec., '613discharged February 24, '62.
Mastin, Britton,I15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643discharged at the close of the war.
Matson, James H.,F109 Inf.Aug. 13, '613discharged at the close of the war June 4, '65.
Matson, John C.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Mattison, David,C76 Inf.Sept., '613taken prisoner at Wilderness, died Andersonville.
Mattison, Geo. L.,non-resident from Pennsylvania.
Maxwell, Edward,I143 Inf.Oct. '623trans. Vet. Res. Corps, disch'g'd at close of war.

Mead, Elias A., lt.,C76 Inf.Sept., '613wounded at Antietam, honorably discharged.
Miller, Albert W.,V. R. C3discharged at close of the war.
Miller, FrankF76 Inf.Nov. 14, '613killed at 2nd Bull Run, Aug. 28, '63.
Moffat, Wm., lt.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623resigned.
Monroe, Milo, serg.,F109 Inf.Aug. 8, '623discharged at Denver, June 10, '66.
Monroe, Wm.,I15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643killed at Newmarket, and buried on the field.
Montgomery, Daniel R.,F76 Inf.Nov. 14, '613wounded at Gettysburg, dis. expiration of term.
Montgomery, J.J.,July 9, '64Medical Cadet U. S. A.
Morey, Wm. A,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623died of disease in Georgia.
Morgan, John,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623
Morgan, R. S.C76 Inf.Dec., '613also 3d U. S. Cav., discharged at close of the war.
Mosely, Chas. D.,A32 Inf.May 15, '612discharged from disability Sept. 29, '62.
Mosely, Chas. D.,F15 Cav.Aug. 26, '61discharged at close of the war.
Mosely, Edwin T.,I15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643died of disease at Fairfax cemetery, July 14, '65.
Mosher, Philip D.I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623died of disease at Washington.
Mosher, Wm. A.,C76 Inf.Nov. 5, '613no record.
Mynard, Cortland,B179 Inf.Sept. 17, '643discharged at close of the war.
Nash, David,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at close of the war.
Nash, Philander,I15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643
Norton, Wm. D.,C76 Inf.Dec., '613died before actual service.
Nugent, John,E155 Inf.Sept., '623discharged at close of the war.
Obert, Eli A.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623killed in battle on Weldon R. R., August 21, '64.
Odell, George,I15 Cav.3discharged at the close of the war, died soon after.
Ostrander, Myron,F15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643wounded and lost leg, discharged August, '65.
Overacker, Isaac,I143 Inf.Nov. 8, '623died of disease April 4, '64.
Owen, Daniel J.,3died of disease in service.
O'Wrighter, Marion,non-resident from Pennsylvania.
Paine, John,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged for disability July 20, '63.
Peak, Seth R.,F15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643discharged at the close of the war.
Pease, Almon,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Pelham, Benjamin,discharged at Washington before actual service.
Pendleton, Geo. L.,non-resident from Pennsylvania.

Perrigo, Chas. M.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623dis. for disability, leg amputated Sept. 17, '63.
Pettengill, F., corp.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623died of disease in Columbia Hosp., Washington.
Pettigrove, John,no record
Pratt, Samuel,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623
Price, Chas. H.,E32 Inf.June 2, '612discharged at expiration of term.
Puderbaugh, John A.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Puderbaugh, Theo. J.,E39 Inf.June 2, '612dis. at expiration of term, re-enlisted in 143 Inf.
Robinson, John L.,I15 Cav.Feb. 3, '643discharged at the close of the war.
Robinson, Joseph,E32 Inf.June 2, '612discharged at expiration of term.
Robinson, Laugdon,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at the close of the war, died soon after.
Roe, Wm. M., serg.I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623wounded at Peach Tree Creek, dis. close of war.
Root, Horace L., lt.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623wounded Petersburg, July 30, '64, arm amp.
Rulison, Geo. P.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Russel, D. E.,non-resident from Pennsylvania.
Ryder, Wm.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Schutt, Jeremiah,E32 Inf.June 2, '622wounded 1st Bull Run, dis. disability July 2, '62.
Schutt, Monroe,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Schutt, Socrates,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623died of disease April 6, '63
Scott, Chas.I15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643discharged at the close of the war.
Seaman, Ephraim,I15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643prisoner Newmarket, dis. Louisville close of war.
Seaman, Peter, serg.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Seaman, Wm.,no record.
Selby, Henry,B26 Col.June 14, '633no record.
Shaver, John W.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Shaw, Henry,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Shaw, Wm.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged for disability.
Shepard, Wm. C.3no record.
Sherwood, Emerson,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Sherwood, John,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged for disability March 10, '63.
Sherwood, Lafayette,no record.
Sherwood, Morgan,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623died at Bridgeport, Alabama.

Sherwood, W. P.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623died at Nashville, Tenn.
Simons, Daniel P., serg.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623wounded at Spottsylvania, dis. at close of war.
Simons, Seneca A.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623no record.
Skillman, Geo. F.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Skillman, Jas. M.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623dis. for disability April 8, '63, died August, '65.
Smalley, W. R.,non-resident from Pennsylvania.
Smith, Edwin W.,M21 Cav.Feb., '643discharged at the close of the war.
Smith, L. D.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623killed at Atlanta, July 30, '64.
Snyder, Ezra,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged for disability, no date.
Snyder, Henry J.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at Cincinnati, April, '64.
Sorrell, Edward,BU. S. Col.June 14, '633killed on picket Graham's Neck, S. C., Dec. '64.
Sorrell, John H.,B26 Inf.Dec. 24, '633discharged at the close of the war.
Spear, M. L. G., lt.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623resigned February 1, '64.
Stanton, Wm. A.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged for disability.
Starr, B. Peter, corp.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Stevens, Chas.,no record.
Straight, Hiram,no record.
Strong, B. G.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Strong, C. L., corp.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Strong, Philemon B.,I15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643died of disease at Baltimore.
Stubbs, Wm. A.,C76 Inf.3discharged at expiration of term.
Sutfin, Geo. W.,I15 Cav.Aug. 31, '643discharged at the close of the war.
Sutfin, Nathaniel D.,E32 Inf.June 2, '612dis. for disability Sept. 10, '62, died soon after.
Sweet, A. C.,B94Aug. 15, '643discharged at the close of the war.
Sweet, A. Cole,E32 Inf.June 2, '61wounded Gainesville, South M'nt'n, dis. ex. term.
Sweet, A. Cole,F15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643discharged at the close of the war.
Sweet, A. Lewis,F76 Inf.Nov. 5, '613discharged for disability, July 14, '62.
Sykes, Jonathan H.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Tanner, Garrett S.,I143 Cav.Aug '643
Tanner, Lyman,E32 Inf.June 2, '612discharged at expiration of term.
Tanner, Lyman, serg.,I15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643promoted to q. m. serg., discharged close of war.
Teeter, Edward H.,C76 Inf.Nov. 5, '613discharged disability Aug. 20, '62.

Teeter, Edward H.,F9 Art.Aug., '643discharged at close of the war.
Thomas, Theodore F.,I15 Cav.Aug., '643discharged at close of the war.
Tomlinson, Robert,155 Inf.3discharged at close of the war.
Tripp, John D., corp.,F76 Inf.Dec., '613dis. for disability, Apr. '62; afterward med. cad.
Tripp, Wm. C.,I15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643discharged at Louisville at close of the war.
Truesdell, Geo. L., capt.,I15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643pro. May 8, '65; discharged at close of the war.
Tucker, John,F15 Cav.Feb. 2, '643discharged at close of the war.
Tucker, Orrin,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged for disability, March 28, '64.
Tyler, Jas. V.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623died of disease, July 16, '64.
Underwood, Nathan,F109 Inf.3
Underwood, Ogden G.,F109 Inf.3
Vail, Samuel J., serg.F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623wounded Wilderness; died of disease Oct. 4, '64.
Valuschamp, Abraham,non-resident.
Vanderpool, John W.,F76 Inf.Nov. 5, '613discharged at expiration of term.
Vanderpool, Simon,F76 Inf.Nov. 5, '613
Van Horn, Nathaniel,3non-resident.
Van Horn, Samuel,3non-resident.
Van Natta, Theodore,F15 Cav.July 13, '64.3discharged at close of the war.
Van Order, Eugene,32 Inf.3
Van Order, Fred32 Inf.2
Van Valkenburgh, Eugene, corp.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged for wounds received at Spottsylvania.
Wagoner, Alonzo B., serg.,F76 Inf.July 26, '643two terms same reg't; discharged at close of war.
Wagoner, Garrett,F76 Inf.Nov. 5, '613
Waite, Andrew,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623dis. disability Dec. 13, '62; re-enlisted 21 Cav.
Waite, Andrew,M21 Cav.Feb. 20, '643discharged at close of the war.
Waite, Henry B.,F143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Waite, James,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623
Wallace, J. Henry,G15 Art.Sept. 5, '633w'ded Lacey Springs, Va., Dec., '64, dis. close war.
Ward, Ai,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged for disability March, '63.
Weaver, Henry D., corp.,C76 Inf.Oct., '613killed at Gettysburg, July 1, '63.

Welch, James,F143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at close of the war.
West, Albert M.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623died of disease Sept. 12, '63
White, John A.,C76 Inf.Nov. 5, '613died of disease in Virginia, Aug. 27, '62.
White, John W.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623killed at Spottsylvania, May 12, '64.
White, Wm. R., corp.,F109 Inf.Aug. 27, '623discharged at close of the war.
Wickham, George,I143 Inf.Aug. 10, '643discharged at close of the war.
Wilcox, Geo. R.,F15 Cav.June, '643
Wilcox, Joseph L.,F15 Cav.June, '643
Wilcox, Lyman,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged on account of age, Nov. 9, '62.
Wilcox, Marion,F76 Inf.Nov. 5, '613discharged before actual service.
Willey, Samuel M.,I185
Williamson, Clark,F15 Cav.June, '643discharged at the close of the war.
Wilson, Henry,F76 Inf.Nov. 5, '613transferred to Vet. Res. Corps; dis. close of war.
Woodmancy, Geo., corp.,I143 Inf.Oct. 8, '623discharged at the close of the war.
Wright, Geo. W.,I143 Inf.3

Women, as well as men, gave their services to the country in this time of need, and Mrs. Julia A. Cook, whose husband, Enos, had already died in the service, and whose only son, James H., served throughout the war, volunteered as a nurse and was on duty in the hospitals at Washington in June, 1864, until her own sickness compelled her to return. As an inland town Dryden could not be expected to contribute much to the naval forces of the country, but an incident which interested the people of Dryden village and enlisted their deepest sympathy at the time, should be here mentioned. Jared Boorom, a relative of a Dryden family, had been a sailor and in his wanderings had married a little Spanish woman whom he had met in the West India Islands. Upon the breaking out of the war he brough her and their little daughter to Dryden, where he provided for them with his relatives while he enlisted as a gunner on the Galena, a gunboat of the U.S. Navy. Mrs. Boorom could speak but very little English, but with her peculiar Spanish ways she was a subject of great interest to Dryden people, among whom she made many friends. But suddenly there came news that Boorom was wounded by the explosion of a shell in an attack on Fort Fisher in the James River, May 16, 1862, and a day or two later that he was dead. The grief of the poor young widow knew no bounds and excited the deepest sympathy from all who had known and heard of her. The remains of her husband were brought to Dryden and laid in the Green Hills cemetery, where a monument to-day marks his grave. His wife soon after returned to her native country.

Goodrich, George B. The Centennial History of the Town of Dryden, 1797-1897. Dryden: Dryden Herald Steam Printing House, 1898. Reprinted 1993 by the Dryden Historical Society. Pages 55-67.

(The Dryden Historical Society, which sells this book, may be reached at 607-844-9209.)

Posted by simon at 10:00 AM Comment