Around and About Athens, New York, part 4 Finale

295 year old Zillow listing

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Real Estate

Home for 295 years, one way to describe the Albertus Van Loon house, 85 North Washington street, Athens, New York. Built before there was a George Washington or Athens New York. The river flowing by was named North River when this door first opened. The Delaware was South River.

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Listed today on Zillow with a increasing value and, incredibly, “built 1725.”

Well cared for…..

…..solid masonry walls with timber additions.

Right on the Hudson River.

Details

Albertus is a Great+ Uncle for Pam. She felt the connection to this place, marveled at the well build masonry and solid windows, absolutely loved the ivy. 85 North Washington was our last stop.

Click me for the first post of this series.

Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved Michael Stephen Wills

Around and About Athens, New York, part 3

Blossoms, headstones and the passage from Dutch to English

Blossoms

Spiraea bushes in full bloom flanked the Riverside Park along Water Street.

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Well cared for…..

…..as are the urns across the street.

Athens Country Cemetery

Our daughter-in-law and her Mom were a source of post-trip information. “Yan Van Loan” is how Jan Van Loon’s name is pronounced in Dutch, they kindly informed us.

Passage of political control from Dutch to English was decades old when Jan Van Loon acquired his land on the river. By the 19th century the name was anglicized (turned English) on the headstones, spelled as it was pronounced in English. In the 18th century Pam’s ancestors had moved west and south to what became Plymouth, Pennsylvania (Luzerne County). This was before the coal fields, in the 18th century agriculture was the primary industry. Pam’s branch of the Van Loons retained the Dutch spelling and anglicized the pronunciation, as “Van Loon” is pronounced in the English language.

The very old burials were marked with headstones of locally quarried slate, as was common in upstate New York. You can see slate headstones in this video of a Pioneer Cemetery near our home in Ithaca, New York.

In Athens the oldest stones were in the same condition, the lettering and decoration erased by the elements even when the stones are still standing. Some kind people researched the burials and erected a modern, white marble memorial stone with the names and dates of the ancestors named in the records. Jan Van Loon, Maria his wife, or any of Pam’s direct ancestors were not among them.

The Matthias Van Loon of this memorial obelisk was a descendant who remained in what became Athens, New York. The following two photographs are of the base and an overview. Matthias Van Loon’s is on the right.

This Catholic burial is on the very edge of the site, as though pushed off to the side. That is the yard of a private home in the background. I started this post with flowers because there was little evidence of familial devotions on these burials of previous centuries.

Click me for the next post of this series. Learn about a 295 year old house that is still a home.

Click me for the first post of this series.

Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved Michael Stephen Wills

Around and About Athens, New York, part 2

Real Estate and Ancestors

Pam eventually caught up to report a breakthrough contact made through casual street interactions (click me for Part 1). She talked to random strangers on 2nd Street hoping to learn more about her ancestor, Jan Van Loon. The breakthrough was a name and phone number of a woman, the daughter of a new acquaintance, and a tip about an old cemetery.

Two people are visible in this first photograph, taken from the south end of Athen’s Riverside Park. Look to the left of the large tree where a artist, under the small white umbrella, is painting while in conversation with a second person. Pam struck up a conversation……

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“For Sale: 1825 Federal Home on the Hudson River”

The artist had an easel and a painting in progress, the subjects were yellow irises, part of a formal garden on the grounds of the mansion. We first took it to be a museum or public building of some sort, but were mistaken. It is a home. In the course of a conversation that touched upon Henry Hudson’s 1608 journey up the river (they knew nothing of Jan Van Loon, or of deeper local history in general), and the work of the second man who was the owner of the mansion. Here is more about the place from the Zillow listing. There was no “for sale” sign in evidence.

From the portion of the 12 South Water Street garden on the road. We chatted with the house owners and an artist as he painted these yellow iris blooms.

Zillow Listing WOW!!

” A freshly renovated home and grounds on the Hudson River, at 12 South Water Street, Athens, New York. Barely visible, to the left of the tree, is an artist, painting large yellow irises while chatting with the owner of the property. Here is what the listing on Zillow has to say, “This majestic 1825 Federal home on the banks of the Hudson River was designed by architect Barnabas Waterman for shipping entrepreneur Anthony Rutgers Livingston. Steeped in history, the house has undergone an extensive – yet sensitive – restoration. Enter into a grand hallway with Double Parlors to the right and a formal DR on the left. Original Federal flourishes abound with acanthus leaf capitals and entablatures, corinthian columns, and intact mantels and moulding. The high ceilings and tall windows provides extraordinary elegance, light and comfort. A thoughtful kitchen renovation and 1/2 Bath for 21st century convenience. Upstairs is a Full Bath and four spacious and airy Bedrooms, the Master with ensuite bath. The walk – out lower level features a family room with fireplace, a full bath and the original kitchen with hearth and beehive oven. A stroll past the box-wood garden leads to a 3-bay Garage with Studio and 1/2 Bath above, perfect for artist, home office or guests. Convenient to Thruway, Catskill, Hudson. 2- hrs NY.”

View from the home, across the Hudson River. This is the Middle Ground Flats (an island mid-stream in the Hudson River) in the distance.

Formal Garden

Restored Hudson River Mansion

Barely a half mile apart, a great distance separates the homestead of Jan Van Loon and the 12 South Water Street former mansion of a shipping magnate including 125 years and the American Revolution.

Stylized Acanthus Leaves grace these Corinthian Capitals

Click me for the next post in this series about Flowers and the Athens Country Cemetery.

Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved Michael Stephen Wills

Dennis-Newton House National Historic Place

first photographs for a recent National Registry of Historic Places listing

Wiki Loves Monuments 2017 is a contest coming to a close at the end of September.

Click for Wiki Loves Monuments 2017 contest

The National Register of Historic Place # 16000590, the Dennis-Newton House of Ithaca, New York is a recent listing, dated September 6, 2016.  In researching potential for the Wiki contest, I discovered this place was absent a photograph.  Seizing the opportunity, I grabbed these photographs the same session as the suppressed Ithaca Pottery Site, published in my blog yesterday.

The location was a revelation, around the corner and a few blocks down from our son and daughter-in-law’s house where they are raising three (of our 12) grandchildren, across the street from where the children take swim lessons.  Parking in downtown Ithaca is incredibly coveted and I was not motivated to shoot during the golden hour where cars would, maybe, not be parked out front and the light perfect for the west-facing façade.

Dennis-Newton House Street Frontage

 

Click this link for my On Line gallery, “Finger Lakes Memories.”

Above is the street frontage of 421 N. Albany Street, Ithaca, New York, a home privately owned.  The house is as originally constructed and considered the birthplace of Cornell’s Alpha Phi Alpha, the first Greek letter, African-American collegiate fraternity established from this location in 1907.

Named for the original owner, Norman Dennis who built it around 1870 and a later owner, Edward Newton, who is directly connected with the early years of Alpha Phi Alpha; the house was recently renovated with a building permit still posted in the porch window, partially obstructed by glare.

The frontage view is partially obstructed by a Black Maple (Acer nigrum) and provides shade from the afternoon sun.

 

Dennis-Newton House Door, Porch

 

To compensate for the time of day, the tree and parked cars I captured interesting details of the front porch.  The time was day was perfect for photographing these and, in the golden hour, will be unevenly illuminated.  Note the elegant door glass panels, solid wood door and trim with original porcelain and metal door knobs and lock.  Porch trim includes decorative brackets, spandrels, posts.

Dennis-Newton House Porch, Window

Click this link for my On Line gallery, “Finger Lakes Memories.”

Here is a different angle on the porch trim to include the porch’s fancy balusters and rails.  The decorative head on the window is wonderful. The private owner recently renovated the property, there is a building permit still posted in the window.

Much of the information for this blog came from this web page.

In preparation for shooting, I mounted the Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM lens on the Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II body.  The frontage and second porch shots were at 70mm, 1/200 second, ISO 1,000, f/7.1.   The middle shot, of the door, was 1/250 second at f/5.0.

Copyright 2017 Michael Stephen Wills All Rights Reserved

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ithaca Pottery National Historic Place

finding a suppressed location

Wiki Loves Monuments 2017 is a contest coming to a close at the end of September.

Click for Wiki Loves Monuments 2017 contest

The National Register of Historic Places, online, lists the Ithaca Pottery Site(# 79001635) as “address restricted”.   There is no photograph published for the site either on the register or Wikipedia.  Here is an opportunity and a mystery.  Where is the suppressed location of this historic place?  There is the opportunity of completing the record by capturing a photograph.

There is another online reference listing the site as 423 E. Lincoln Street.  The site is “I Love the Finger Lakes”,

I researched the physical location of the site and found it to be in a historically industrial area of Ithaca, close to Ithaca Falls.  The correspondence I found online named Ezra Cornell as the owner when the pottery concern was active.  He donated the land for Cornell University and the location is consistent with his ownership.  There is a large wooded lot behind the building.

Last week I visited the address and guess the best light was the morning, returned yesterday to acquire the photograph.  There was a knoll across Lake Street that gave this view.  There are conflicting elements in this photograph:  the far hills are beautiful, the pole with wires very difficult to remove.  Also, the address is not visible.

Ithaca Pottery from the Knoll

Click link for my fine art gallery.

 

The street passing left to right is Lake Street.  Crossing lake street I took several shots, negotiating the light traffic to eventually stand in Lake Street for this shot.

Ithaca Pottery from Lake Street

In preparation for shooting, I mounted the Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM lens on the Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II body.  This shot was at 70mm, 1/200 second, ISO 1,000, f/7.1.   I hated the power lines and could not avoid them from any acceptable angle.

The only solution was to spend hours in Photoshop to achieve the result in the header.

Copyright 2017 Michael Stephen Wills All Rights Reserved