The 1905 vintage 1000 pound cast iron gate valve actuator from the upper gatehouse of the New Croton Dam has been donated by the NYC DEP to NYS Parks for use as an exhibit at the Keepers House. The hand cranked mechanism that used to control the effluent gates at the dam was picked up from the current Croton gatehouse in Yorktown on Wednesday Dec. 9, to be processed for safe public display by the Peebles Island restoration office of NYS Parks. Once installed, visitors to the Keepers House will be able to get a closeup look. The object is a good illustration of the robust era of American industrial might as well as an example of how the Croton water system was managed for 100 years.

Modern electric motor and computer driven valves and mechanisms are being installed now as modern replacements for the 110 year old original machinery of the New Croton Dam.


A visit to the High Bridge combines well with a visit to two adjacent Bronx sites of architectural, historic, and scenic interest, about a 25-30 minute walk from the Bronx end of the bridge.

Today’s NY Times delivers the good news that a group has formed to raise funds to restore Gould Memorial Library the Stanford White 1899 domed beauty on the campus of Bronx Community College. The article title, “An Opulent Bronx Library in Decay, and in Search of a Purpose,” by David Dunlap, sums up the story.

The Hall of Fame for Great Americans, only alluded to in the article, is equally of interest. Its entrance is close to the library. This outdoor curved colonnade features bronze busts of nearly 100 American achievers, a selection reflecting the judgment of its 1901 era. The site is marvelous, overlooking the Harlem Valley.


by Shaun T. Gorman Apparently, no one got the message that Sunday was a day of rest.... A long Sunday walk on the autumnal OCA trail in Yonkers yielded a pair of surprises! What's this? A crew repairing the masonry on the famous "lion's gate"? We were tickled to see a half dozen men diligently cutting, fitting, and mortaring the curious west entrance gate of the Untermyer Gardens, using the pink and gray granite that defines so much of Westchester County. I wondered, if these men are working on the headless horse, could they be the headless horse men I've heard so much about? Or is it a unicorn, as Mavis Cain believes? Hmmm, more research is needed.... Not more than a half mile north, we came upon another happy crew constructing a new stair connection to the Lenoir Preserve trail system. They called themselves the "Jolly Rovers" and are a recently organized group of volunteers committed to perpetuating the traditional methods of stone masonry.


Work is moving along! Exterior paint completed. Landscape terraced for events. Interior doors painted and ready to install. Bike racks installed.


OCA update-Yonkers division:
Road crossing improvements-
After some initial discussions with local FOCA members, the city of Yonkers has returned to the practice of repainting crosswalks at the 20 or so road crossings of the OCA trail within city borders. The city has an aggressive and ongoing road restoration program and have responded to requests that they repaint trail crosswalks at road crossings. In addition, they will replace old signs with new hi-viz versions showing updated ped/cycle graphics. The city engineer has determined that curb cuts are appropriate at some crossings and will include these improvements in future road work. Finished improvements so far, with more to come:

O'Dell Ave - new curb cuts, crosswalks, and signs
Arthur Ave - new crosswalks and signs
Glenwood Ave - new crosswalks and signs
Wicker St - new crosswalks and signs