Blenheim's covered bridge Catch-22
2/23/12 - 4:32 pm
Above: A YouTube video made in tribute to the destroyed Old Blenheim Bridge, destroyed on August 28, 2011 by flooding from Tropical Storm Irene.
Poor Blenheim. In order to get federal money to rebuild its bridge, the town needs to be on the National Register of Historic Places. But in order to be on the register, Blenheim needs...yep, a bridge.
The town of Blenheim lost its biggest claim to fame in last year's floods: The 169-year-old Old Blenheim Bridge, which at 210 feet had the largest span of any single-span covered bridge in the world.
Now, according to several recent news accounts, the spot where the Old Blenheim Bridge once stood may lose its designation as a national historic landmark. CBS 6 Albany reports:
Last month, the parks department and the department of the interior have contacted the town, threatening to remove the bridge from all three lists.
“You can stay on the list if you have 51 percent of the original structure,” said [Schoharie County historian Carle] Kopecky.
Almost 6 months later they're still recovering pieces of the bridge. Donald Airey, the Long Term Recovery Chair, told CBS that if the town fails to recover the 51 percent they will lose more than historical recognition.
“There is money that can be available for flood mitigation, infrastructure protection, that money can be used to protect the town,” said Donald Airey.
To make matters worse, an unnamed looter is holding pieces of the bridge hostage, according to the Schoharie Times-Journal:
Many people have come forward to turn over pieces of the bridge found on their property but there is one person who has some major timbers from the span that has refused to turn it over and said he will sell the pieces for profit.
This person, she said, should not be allowed to "profit off the misery of our county," [former supervisor Gail] Shaffer said.
County attorney Michael West said he would be aggressive in the recovery in the pieces of the bridge.
The Times-Journal reports that the town is seeking to gather as many pieces of the original bridge as possible, in an effort to build a replica on the site. But to get grants for rebuilding the bridge, Shaffer says, the town needs to keep the historical designation.
Since its destruction last August, the Old Blenheim Bridge has found a new life on Facebook, where a local historian has created a page for the site.
|News from Plattekill Mountain|
|Woodshed Prophets Perform at Roxbury Revelry - September 6!|
|Roxbury Revelry in Kirkside Park this Labor Day Weekend!|
|Mountain Bike Appreciation Weekend at Plattekill Aug 15-16|
|"Heartlands" by Lisa Candela -- Opening Labor Day Weekend at Tay Tea|
|Lover's Tea - The Last Cool Drink of Summer!|
|Beautiful Open-Concept Apartment For Rent In Fleischmanns|
|Wednesday Night’s Show: Ryan’s Walk in the Woods|
|Tonight's Show: Forest Talk with Mike Porter|
|Mountain Hunting: Headed for the Hills|
|Tonight’s Show: Catskill Trees with Gary Mead – white cedar|
|Charity Auction, Rhythm & Brews and Brewery FUN this Labor Day Weekend!|
|Plant Markers - Free Kid Crafts at the Round Barn|
|Butterfly Crafts for Kids at the Round Barn|
|Origami - Free Craft Workshop for Kids|
|Going Ninja on Japanese Beetles|
|BLTs at Last! Whole Lamb Orders, and Farm Tour Sunday|
|Fresh Beef and Merguez (Lamb Sausage)|
|The Power of Partnership: Our Network Working For Patients|
|Antique Engine Jamboree & Powerfest at Hanford Mills Museum|
|CATSKILLS CITIZENS STUNNED: WIOX UNEXPECTEDLY HITS 5 YEAR MARK!|
|Taco Tuesdays at the Andes Hotel and O'Neills Shire Pub|
|Widespread telcom outage in Central New York|
|Now Hiring: Dental Hygienist (Margaretville, NY)|
|Farmers' Market of the Week: Sidney|
|Farmers' Market of the Week: Oneonta|
|Job Posting: Watershed Maintainer in Kingston|
|Job Posting: Watershed Maintainers in Shokan|
|Job Posting: Watershed Maintainers in Margaretville|
|FREE French Wine Tasting!|
|ANNIVERSARY SALE EXTENDED thru Saturday, August 22nd!|
|Trip to Fort William Henry and Lake George Cruise|
|World War II-Era Food Workshop, August 15|
|Beautiful in Bovina|
|Enchanting Catskill Mountain Retreat|
|Catskill Mountain Hide-A-Way|
|Golf and Camaraderie. No Losers!|
|Foundation Thanks Golfers, Sponsors and Supporters at Golf Tournament|
|Country chic Catskill Farms farmhouse for sale in Eldred|
|Margaretville Store Closing Sale!|
|OPEN HOUSE SATURDAY, AUGUST 15TH FROM 11AM TO 2 PM|
|Steam in the Catskills|
|Catskill Recreation Center Is Hiring: Full-Time Aquatics Director|
|Catskill Recreation Center is Hiring: Full-Time Business Manager|
|Clematis in the Catskills region|