Stories of family and ancestors who lived and worked in Cohoes (textile and garment workers, butchers and barbers), Waterford (canalers), Whitehall (farmers and canalers), Port Henry (iron miners and Civil War soldiers), Champlain (canalers and farmers) and other towns along the Champlain Canal in New York State with some diversions to the places they emigrated from....Quebec (landless farmers, shoemakers, sailors, soldiers), Acadia (more farmers), and even Cornwall, England (tin miners).
Sunday, April 11, 2010
Waterways and Rivers of Cohoes
Cohoes had a unique geographical position because two rivers, the Mohawk and the Hudson, converge along its banks. This fact enabled Cohoes to be the only town in New York State that enabled both the Eire and the Champlain Canals to run within its boundary. The two canals converged on the southern end of Cohoes and ran through Maplewood, Watervelit (West Troy), Menands on down to the city of Albany. By the time I was young in the 1950s and 1960s, you wouldn't be able to grasp that fact if you walked along the old route. There was no old route that I could see! I always wondered why the Marsolais' backyard was so big and went on and on into a child's no man land. Later I came to understand it was not their backyard we were playing on, it was the old canal route, filled in, in Maplewood. Now in 2010, the route is long gone covered by Interstate 787 but some vestiges remain and stonework can still be seen along Route 32
Map of Cohoes and Waterford circa 1899
Here are some images of the canals running through Cohoes...