The currently-closed Niagara Gorge Discovery Center is becoming Great Lakes 360, in partnership with the Aquarium of Niagara. Great Lakes 360 will tell the ecological story of the region through accessible exhibits, highlighting the wildlife of the Niagara River and the larger Great Lakes ecosystem while celebrating the area’s unique geological history. [Read more…] about Transforming The Niagara Falls Experience
Lighting up Niagara Falls at night goes back to before the Civil War, when simple chemical flares that burned blue were used in honor of visiting English royalty.
In 1907, Walter D’Arcy Ryan, a General Electric lighting engineer used 44 searchlights with gelatin filters (similar to “gels” used in film production today) to project various colors onto the falls. [Read more…] about Lighting Up Niagara Falls: The Schenectady Connection
The latest episode of Empire State Engagements features a conversation with Dr. Daniel Macfarlane about his book Fixing Niagara Falls: Environment, Energy, and Engineers at the World’s Most Famous Waterfall (Vancouver: UBC Press, 2020).
He discussed conflicting meanings of the falls for Indigenous People, sojourners mesmerized by their beauty, and entrepreneurs with utilitarian industrial visions and dreams of hydroelectric generation; the political dilemmas of managing such a valuable yet vulnerable resource on an international border; the role of Robert Moses in ramrodding power projects to completion in the postwar period; the remarkable re-engineering and re-construction of the falls themselves; de-watering Niagara; and the enduring appeal and splendor of the falls today, despite their “artificial” nature. [Read more…] about Environmental History of Niagara Falls (Podcast)
In 1845, Amasiah Ford of Ballston Spa wrote a multi-page manuscript for his application seeking a veteran’s pension. The account of his military experience 30-plus years earlier would be used 150 years later as references in several books on the War of 1812. [Read more…] about Hard Times For War of 1812 Veteran Amasiah Ford
Governor Andrew Cuomo has unveiled the design for a new $46 million state-of-the-art visitor center in Niagara Falls State Park, with construction scheduled to begin this fall. [Read more…] about Niagara Falls State Park Building $46M Visitor Center
The National Park Service/National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom (NTF) Conference was held September 11-14, 2019, in Niagara Falls. The title of the conference was “Crossings: Bridging the Authentic Underground Railroad Past to the Present.” The Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH) was a partner. [Read more…] about Peter Feinman On National Underground RR Conference
At the national Underground Railroad training event held at Niagara University in Niagara Falls on September 11 – 14, the Underground Railroad Consortium of New York State (URCNYS) received the Robert G. Stanton Award for Network to Freedom (NTF) Partners.
The award was named after Robert G. Stanton who was sworn in as the National Park Service’s 15th director on August 4, 1997, as the first African American director and the first director to go through the Senate confirmation process. [Read more…] about Underground Railroad Consortium Wins National Award
Registrations are now open for the National Park Service Network to Freedom Underground Railroad Training in Niagara Falls, set for September 11 through 14, 2019.
Each half day of the Thursday and Friday event days will commence with a keynote speaker addressing one of the themes of the training. The keynotes are followed by five best practices or case studies that relate to the theme, and then the audience is further formed into small groups for discussion. [Read more…] about National Underground Railroad Training Registration Open
A national Underground Railroad training event has been set for September 11-14, 2019 at Niagara University in Niagara Falls, NY. The theme for this training is Crossings: Bridging the Authentic Underground Railroad Past to the Present. [Read more…] about Underground Railroad History Training Event Planned
When the fugitive William Lyon MacKenzie arrived in Buffalo Dec. 11, 1837, both the Lake Erie city and the United States were at the dawn of great expansion. The Erie Canal had been completed a decade earlier, and Buffalo was now the gateway for western migration.
There also was talk of expansion to the nation’s south. Just a year earlier, American frontiersmen had taken up arms and carved the Republic of Texas out of Mexico Could northern expansion also be part of America’s destiny? If not expansion, could Americans at least help their neighbors throw off the last English claim on North America? [Read more…] about The Patriot War: ‘Remember the Caroline’