OTD: Miscreants threw eggs at the Victory Band

#Onthisday in 1899 it was reported that
The David Nevins Engine company, of Victory Mills, victors at Fort Edward, came down Monday night, headed by the Victory band. They marched through the principal streets of the village and made a fine appearance. They were everywhere royally welcomed with cannon salutes, fireworks, colored fires, etc. The best of feeling was manifested and everybody was pleased. The Nevins machine was trimmed with brooms and was drawn by a team of horses. Everything passed off nicely until the parade was passing up Burgoyne street, when a shower of eggs hit several members of the band. The parade halted at once and a search was made for the miscreants who threw the eggs, but they could not be found, luckily for them. All citizens of this place are loud in their denunciation of the perpetrators of this cowardly act, and are sorry such a despicable act could be committed in our village. Minds so little and contemptible which could conceive and execute a deed of this kind, could wander throughout eternity on a pin head and never come in contact with each other.
This was reported in the Schuylerville Standard 12 July 1899.

1891 DeLong’s Bazaar Sale in Schuylerville

In July of 1891, the Schuylerville Standard had an advertisement that M.H. DeLong’s Bazaar was “closing sale” and had a sale at cost of straw hats both trimmed and untrimmed. The business was at 128 Broadway in Schuylerville. However, in 1893, DeLong’s was still at the same location selling Ladies Furnishing Goods. Based on the current street numbers, this property would be near the Sonn Building.

We do history in Saratoga!

We do history in Saratoga! This photo by David Gronczniak of the 2015 18th Century Day at the Schuyler House. 18th Century Day is always the 2nd Sunday in August. It is hosted by the Old Saratoga Historical Association. It is an opportunity to step back in time at the historic Schuyler House as the grounds come alive with 18th-century activities. We do history by showing puppet shows, chair caning, candle dipping, rope making, beer brewing, spinning, dyeing, quilting, tinsmithing, broom making and more! We do history in Old Saratoga. Whether you call us Saratoga, Old Saratoga, Schuylerville, Victory Mills, Clark’s Mills, Northumberland, Easton, Greenwich, we are all part of a community with so much history and so many traditions. It’s hard to find a month in the year that doesn’t have an remembrance, event or festival! A variety of local organizations ensure that the Earth Day, Memorial Day, Turning Point Parade, 18th Century Day, Candlelight Tour, Veterans Day, Dutch Christmas and more brings visitors, neighbors and friends out to enjoy the music, remembrances, costumes and heritage. The Town of Saratoga is proud be a part of these efforts. The Town works with a wide range of partners to help promote and participate in many other events like Saratoga National Historical Park, Old Saratoga Historical Association, Hudson Crossing Park, Lakes to Locks Passage, Friends of the Battlefield, Saratoga PLAN, Historic Hudson-Hoosic Rivers Partnership, Heritage Hunters of Saratoga County, Schuylerville Area Chamber of Commerce, villages of Schuylerville and Victory, and the Turning Point Parade Committee ….and more. Remembering, commemorating, and celebrating together fosters community ownership and neighborliness, develops more volunteers that work together to create positive changes for our community and encourages visitors to get to know us better. It is how we do history. Join in the fun, and you’ll appreciate the sense of community that’s been at the foundation of Saratoga for centuries. There are many ways you can help care for Old Saratoga, from one-time to reoccurring volunteer opportunities for youth, families, groups and individuals. To learn more about volunteering contact historiantosaratoga@gmail.com

Dangers resulting from the fall of Ticonderoga


We have thus briefly glanced at the dangers resulting from the fall of Ticonderoga, at the resources of sections which Buroyne was now threatening to lay waste with fire and sword, and at the attitude of the people toward those generals who had so grievously disappointed them in the conduct of the campaign, up to this time.  

In the words of one distinguished writer, ”The evacuation of Ticonderoga was a shock for which no part of the United States was prepared.” In the language of another, “No event throughout the whole war produced such consternation, nothing could have been more unexpected.” 

It was not so much the loss of the fortress itself, as costly as it was to the impoverished colonies, that could have been borne, but the people had been led to believe, and did believe, it was next to impregnable; nor could they understand why those who had been intrusted with its defence should have fled without striking a blow, or calling for assistance until too late.”

This is an excerpt from Samuel Adams Drake’s Burgoyne’s Invasion of 1777, with an Outline Sketch of the American Invasion of Canada 1775-1776 as part of the Decisive Events in American History series published in 1889.

Samuel Adams Drake (20 Dec 1833, Boston – 4 Dec 1905, Kennebunkport, Maine) was a journalist, military officer, and writer. He entered journalism in 1858. In 1861 he joined the army and served throughout the war, becoming brigadier-general in 1863. He returned to Boston in 1871 and resumed literary work.

These were the views of our community history in the past. As a community, we will be eternally grateful for the early historians including William Ostrander, John Brandow, William Stone, Ellen Hardin Walworth and others. However, history is a continuing dialogue between the present and the past. Interpretations of the past is subject to change in response to new evidence, new questions asked of the evidence, new perspectives gained by the passage of time. There is no single, eternal, and immutable “truth” about past events and their meaning. We are fortunate to live in a community where there is active history being researched which provides new evidence.  This research may be new access to primary source material, new archeology studies, or new perspectives because new historians and researchers are working in our community.

This is an unending quest of historians and our community for understanding the past — that is, revisionism and that is what makes history vital and meaningful. That is why the study of Saratoga is a never ending task.

Our Working Landscape

Even the earliest travelers noted the promise in the land at Saratoga. The broad, fertile plain, bound by mountains, promised bountiful fruits to those willing to work the landscape. Saratoga’s rural character is defined in part by the past and present farms and farmers that make up this community.
Between 1940 and 1969, the number of active farm operations in Saratoga County plummeted from 2,591 to just 595. This trend was in part a response to the increased mechanization of farming that made agricultural less labor-intensive and tended toward a larger scale for individual farms, and in part a response to pressure from the demand for residential real estate in suburbs and countryside.
The post- World War II housing boom stimulated by the Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of 1944 and the expansion of highways, specifically the creation of Interstate 87 leading northward from Albany through Saratoga County (completed in circa 1961), promoted the latter trend. Saratoga County began to become a bedroom community for Albany region commuters, at least in a corridor extending along the Interstate. As of 2010, agriculture persists as a primary economic enterprise in the our community, concentrating on dairy, equine, and apple orchard activity. Farms and farmland remain cornerstones of our community, linking the past to the future through a landscape of fields and pastures, stone walls and weathered barns shaped by generations of hard-working farm families.
This landscape, cherished by so many, is often taken for granted. Some of its benefits are obvious-the joy of seeing the foals in the fields in the spring, bounty of fresh fruits and vegetables in the summer and fall months; and milk and dairy products year-round. Other benefits are less obvious-the local revenue and jobs farms provide, the recreational and tourism opportunities they create, the wildlife habitat and other environmental benefits they offer. Some benefits are easily quantified; many are not. The benefit that may be most valued by Saratoga residents is the ephemeral “quality of life” that farms help to provide.
Photo Credit: A late summer sunrise along Route 338 in the Town of Saratoga. August, 2015

OTD: Arthur Traver was born

#onthisday in 1918, Arthur Traver was born in Saratoga Springs Arthur Traver was born to a farm family living on Burke Road in the Town of Saratoga. His mother, Mary Morehouse Traver was described as “a person with high ideals for herself, her family, and her community” passed away when Traver was 6 years old. His father, Humphrey Travers raised him and his brothers and sisters while running the family farm. It is this early life experience of hardship and hard work that had an indelible impact on Traver’s commitment to his community and country. Arthur Traver was drafted into the US Army. He served in the 320th Glider Field Artillery Battalion of the 82nd Airborne Division during WW II. He fought in Italy, Normandy D-Day, Operation Market Garden, and Battle of the Bulge. When he returned home from the War, he married Marie Hutchinson. He joined the Quaker Springs Volunteer Fire Department. He served the community in the fire department for 64 years and held various positions including Fire Chief. After the War, Traver started a 25 year career driving a school bus for the Schuylerville Central Schools. In 1950, Arthur Traver and his wife Marie opened Art’s Service Station. Art’s Service Station served as a gas station, grocery store, Wheel Horse products dealer and social network in Quaker Springs. You can learn about Arthur Traver by visiting https://ift.tt/299E8LC Saratoga has been defined by the people who by choice or by chance make up this community. There are many individuals like Arthur Traver that help define this country, our region, and this community. It is the determination of our forefathers, in surmounting overwhelming odds that help define the American spirit – the will and ability to shape a better future. It is the people it is that define this community by choice or by chance have changed this country and even the world. That is why studying the people of Saratoga is integral to a good understanding of the condition of being human.