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...where life is slow, and ripe with rural treasures

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Frankensisters: The Update

We were so ready. We had food. We had water. We had brewed coffee in jars. My sister made spaghetti, I made muffins and hard boiled eggs. Garbage cans were in the carriage house, porches were cleaned off, lawn chairs stowed. Our flashlight batteries were new, the candle wicks unlit. Pat arrived with the dog and a bin full of storm supplies. By 4 p.m. we'd built a fire and were, as all the weather folks advised, hunkered down. Then we watched the fifth day of news and waited. For the rain to come, the wind to blow, the power to go out, the trees to fall. I checked my Blackberry and Facebook account repeatedly, getting reports from my friends in New Jersey and other points downstate. Manhattan was flooding, power was flickering out, the town in which I once worked on Long Island had swans paddling down the main streets. Sandy, according to the model, was headed our way.

Around 8 o'clock, the wind kicked up. Then died down. It rained a little. At 11, the treetops swayed, then settled. The roads in our county were closed in preparation for the storm of the century to plow through this small rural place 200 or so miles northwest of New York City. And...nothing happened.

The conflict of feelings was puzzling. We were relieved, of course, that the giant trees surrounding our houses didn't come tumbling down, that neighbors wouldn't have to face crushed cars in the morning. At the same time, we were........peevish, which my sister and I finally admitted to each other. Here we'd gone to all this TROUBLE to get ready and ended up with weather that, as Pat put it, was better than some days she'd spent on the golf course. Ridiculous but true: we were annoyed that Sandy had missed us.

Then I got a text message from my friend Liz, who once lived in Sea Bright, New Jersey, a lovely oceanside town with an ominous sea wall. Dear friends of hers lost their home. Not their car, not their roof, but their home

To all of those on the east coast who were ravaged by this storm, we in upstate New York are thinking of you today. As for the Frankensisters whose eyes glittered inexplicably at the prospect of experiencing a hurricane, we are utterly ashamed of ourselves. 

This afternoon I will eat some hard boiled eggs and be thankful.

Friday, October 26, 2012


Siblings are so interesting. As Frankenstorm lurches up the east coast, my sister Pat, whose profession should have been as meteorologist, is rubbing her hands together, almost gleeful in her reportage to me about the incoming weather system. She's like the TV people, who also have a strange glint in their eyes as they wave arms over heads and show us dire storm tracking maps. "An unprecedented event!" they howl, clearly not unhappy as they show us the European model vs. that of the U.S. "Who will be right?" they wonder, everything now a competition as international weathermen make their predictions, the most serious of which is that Hurricane Sandy will take a sharp turn west and collide head-on with a cold front from Canada and another system marching forth across the country, causing high winds and rain and possibly snow. East coasters, they warn, should be prepared for massive power outages.

I just got off the phone with Pat. Her concerns about the storm are practical ones. How will we make coffee if the power goes out? What about cooking? Does your gas stove work without electricity? (I don't know the answer to this but I'm thinking not.) We can wrap potatoes in aluminum foil and toss them on the fireplace coals, can we put canned food in a pot and do the same? We need candles, what if the power is out for a week? What then? If it gets cold I'll come to your house, we'll stay warm by the fire, we'll cook like the pioneers, we need batteries, what about the dogs?...and on and on.

I think none of these thoughts. If the power goes out for a week and I can't cook, I'll either slurp cold soup from a can or, better yet, take this opportunity to lose a few pounds. I have a special ratty oversized sweater I wear on snow days, and just this morning was pondering its location. Most importantly, though, I'm worrying about Halloween. I love Halloween, love to dress up and scare the kiddies as they knock on my front door. Will Halloween be ruined, ironically, by a weather event called Frankenstorm? 

I'm imagining the scene if the storm hits upstate New York with Halloween going forward as planned: I'll be in a witch outfit, twirling around handing out candy in the unlighted neighborhood. Pat will be in the back family room, trying to roast a chicken over glowing coals, in a bad mood from lack of caffeine. 

Siblings are so interesting. We're so similar in our mannerisms and shape of hands, our voices, our values, our history. But really, we're so different. Meteorologist Pat is preparing for The Perfect Storm. My only fear is that the kids won't show and I'll be slumped in a darkened room, candy bowl full, pointy black hat put away until next year.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Save The Sherburne Inn Website

Save The Sherburne Inn Restoration Project website is live!  Please visit at:


So many people have related personal stories about the Inn. Please go to the Memories link on the site and share yours.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Saving The Sherburne Inn: Moving Forward

In just a week, much has happened. As reported here last Tuesday, a concerned citizens' group came together recently in an attempt to the preserve the Sherburne Inn, a central focus in our downtown. Current owner Jim Webb agreed to give us that opportunity. In spite of rumor and other reports, here's where we are:

- the citizen's group met, and is now known as Save The Sherburne Inn Restoration Project;
- we are in the process of forming a non-profit entity with a board of directors who will serve as stewards of the project;
- once the non-profit is formed, those who have pledged funds (and others who will do so in the future) may begin sending donations;
- a group of interested parties toured the Inn on Saturday, and the unanimous consensus was that the building is not, as many have claimed, "falling down." In fact, those present agreed that the structure is in remarkably good shape and has great possibilities.
- this week we will begin establishing volunteer committees; if you would like to serve on a committee, please email kyasas@aol.com with your interest area and contact information. To those of you who have already reached out, thank you. We will be in touch.
- we are also setting up a database of general volunteers. If you would like to volunteer in any capacity on this project, please send us an email; we will add you to our list and will call on you as the project develops.
- fundraising, of course, is under discussion. We have until April 1, 2013, to raise $155,000 to purchase the building. We have received strong support and are already a third of the way there in investment commitments. If you would like to be an investor in the purchase of the building, please contact us.
- we are in the process of developing a website, which will contain information about the project and the opportunity to donate through PayPal; when the website is complete, you will find the link on this blog.
- response from the community has been overwhelming. For example, a local barber, Wayne Murray, has offered to donate a dollar per haircut to the Save The Inn project. Tammy Sawyer, of Mountain View Gardens in Sherburne, has offered to host fundraising events at Christmas and in the spring. Many others have volunteered their time and skills, from plumbing and carpentry to picking up a broom. We are counting on other businesses and individuals to embrace this project as well with funds and fundraising, time, services, and support. We are evaluating a wide range of fundraising sources and welcome all ideas on how we can revitalize, restore, and reopen the historic Sherburne Inn.
- we are reaching out to all who have so generously shared their Sherburne Inn stories in the past few weeks and are asking you to send those memories to us by email (kyasas@aol.com), either in story or photo format (if you have photos that you are unable to email, we will make arrangements to collect, scan, and return). We are compiling a book of personal memories about this property because, as so many of us know, the Inn is not just brick and mortar: it has been a heartbeat of this community for almost 100 years.
- we believe that the ultimate success of the Sherburne Inn will be in a multi-use capacity, including but not limited to dining, retail, lodging, and events.

The Save The Sherburne Inn Restoration Project has been formed because we believe in the future of not only the building, but of our community. We do not want revisit the past: instead, we hope to preserve history while moving forward, both economically and in community planning. This is what small towns are all about...neighbors coming together, doing what they can in however small or large ways, and bringing about meaningful change that will affect the lifeblood of our village for generations.

Thank you in advance for all you can do in helping us save The Sherburne Inn.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The Sherburne Inn: Where We Are

One of my favorite movie lines, from "A League of Their Own," is when Tom Hanks is talking to Geena Davis about baseball:

"It's supposed to be hard. If it wasn't hard, everybody would do it; it's the hard that makes it great."

But sometimes things just seem too hard. Things. Like moving forward, or believing in a cause, or doing what we feel is right even when others shout we're not. We contend with the naysayers, codgers who sit around and throw rocks at any idea because...well, truthfully I don't know why the rock-throwers throw. Is it because they really feel a project will be a failure, or is it because they want to see the project fail? Because, for some unfathomable reason, they enjoy watching other people do poorly since they themselves have accomplished so little?

I've said the following to many people in the last two weeks: My nickname, as a kid, was Stick-In-The-Mud, coined by my dad. Even as a child, when I was told I couldn't do something, I dug in. I said, "Oh really?" and forged ahead. Many times I succeeded, and sometimes I failed because, of course, everybody does. But what I never did was stop trying.

As reported on this blog last week, word came out recently that two historic buildings in my town were under threat of destruction, to be replaced by a convenience store and gas station. One of the buildings, the former Sherburne Inn, was causing most of the controversy. There were many sides to this issue. Some people said, "Good, that building is a mess and should be torn down." Others waffled: "Well, it's too bad, would be nice if the building could be brought back, but maybe progress is better." Still others, a group of which I was a part, said "No. Let's not knock down yet another historic building. Let's see what we, as a community, can do."

The owner of the building, Jim Webb of Sherburne, bought the Inn some years ago with the idea to renovate and reopen. And then, like so many of us, Jim felt the pinch of the economy. In the opinion of many, Jim has thus far saved the building from another person or corporation coming along and tearing it down. He was unable to bring to fruition his original plan and so the buliding has sat idle and dark, a sad reminder on the anchor corner of this village of just how hard times have been. Everyone on all sides of this issue agrees on one point: the Inn, in its current condition, is an eyesore.

Last week a group of concerned citizens -- preservationists all -- met with Jim to discuss the prospect of the Inn and its adjacent building being torn down. The meeting was civilized and productive. Each person present understood the perspective of others: Jim's financial interest coupled with his resistance to razing the Inn; and our interest in preserving, if possible, this historical though (at the moment) not terribly attractive structure. Thanks to our concern, Jim cracked open the door: he gave us a week to raise a substantial down payment, and until the end of the year to raise the rest to purchase both buildings. We tried to raise the down payment. Thanks to people in this village and those who don't live here but who still have a connection to Sherburne, we got close as the deadline arrived. But we failed.

On Saturday I met with Jim, a "hometown boy" who has, over the years, done much for this small village, both publicly and behind the scenes. He toured me through the Inn, which is indeed begging for restoration. It is not, however (as many claim), falling down. The building is made of poured concrete and brick, built nearly 100 years ago by men who tired of fires that claimed its earlier incarnations, beautiful wooden structures that in archival photographs show ladies and gentlemen in Victorian garb waving from gabled balconies. The Inn boasts 21,000 square feet, space for dining and guest rooms, a gift shop, a bakery, conferences and parties. It is a grand old building -- which as we confirmed days ago is listed on the National Historic Register -- that is sleeping, its transoms and antique doors and wood banisters and silent fireplaces waiting for the right hands to come along and breathe in new life.

Jim Webb is a fine man. He has considered the concerns of citizens this week, considered the importance of Sherburne's past, and in fact does not want to see the Inn demolished. On Saturday Jim made our group another offer, to buy the Inn for $165,000, which we have accepted. Jim also gave us first right of refusal on the adjacent former Big M property. Our citizens' group, with a $10,000 down payment, has until April 1 to raise the balance of $155,000 to purchase the Sherburne Inn. We feel this task can be accomplished, and as of spring 2013, if not sooner, the Inn will be ours. We are forming a consortium of investors and will operate the Inn under a board of directors. Our next task, a daunting one, will be to raise money to repair, restore, and reopen a thriving business on our four corners. The amount of money needed to restore has varied between experts: $1.5 million, $2 million, maybe more. The details of how we raise this funding is under discussion. The details of what the Inn will be like in the new millennium are being formulated, as is a date for the grand opening. There is much to do and much money to raise. We are launching a community project that will change Sherburne forever, and we in the citizens' group know we can count on our local leaders to assist us as much as they can. Downtown Sherburne's historic district, which includes beautiful old homes, significant buildings, and, in particular, the Pillow and Pantry Bed and Breakfast tenderly and inspiringly restored by Jim and Peggy Jeffrey, will come alive. I am not the only stick-in-the-mud who believes in the future of the Sherburne Inn. Other citizens of this community, and those of you who have pledged money and time and services to help us with this project, are all sticks-in-the-mud. We are digging in our heels. We will make this happen.

Thank you, Jim, for having your heart in the right place. And everyone who is reading this who cares about not just the Inn, but about history and about the future of our community, we need your ideas, your help, your time as volunteers, your fundraising efforts. To those of you who have so generously pledged funds, we will soon call on you to fulfill that pledge. More information on how you can contribute to this historic project will be forthcoming in the days ahead, so stay tuned. We have taken a giant step in the right direction. Now it's time to get to work.

And to the others, those who will tell us this project is too hard, try to remember this: it's the hard that makes it great.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Saving The Sherburne Inn: One Man's View

In the last week I've spoken to many people about the preservation of the buildings at the main corner of our village. Tonight I received the following email, which I have received permission to reprint. The sentiments of the writer are clear, and echo those of the other residents of Sherburne with whom I have spoken: 

"Ms. Yasas, hello. My name is Wayne Murray, the new barber in town. My shop is in the old mill building (red). I have been in business now for just for 1 month. I read your article in today's Sherburne News and was counting the minutes down 'til I got home and settled to write to you. I so AGREE with you on the issue of 'Save The Inn'.  

Being new in my business I don't know how I could help financially, but as for moral support I have plenty of that! I'm so against the LOOK of a convenience store in the middle of town.  I look at that when I go through New Berlin. (They tore down the Eagle Inn for a parking lot...sad.)

It seems in Chenango County the pastime is: Let's Tear It Down. Look at the issue with the 'Green House' in Norwich. I hope and pray that place on the corner of South Broad St. and Mitchell St.  STAYS empty for mega years. 'nuff said.

Question: The Sherburne Historical Society wants to build a $140,000 building. Why can't they raise this money for part of the INN to turn it into a museum? Just a thought there.  I too, would love to see the Inn come back to life.  But How? I would really love to move my barber shop under the Inn. My mother took me there when I was 3 or 4 yrs. old.  I still, to this day, 49 years later can remember walking down those steps.  I kid you not.  

There just has to be someone out there who can create a miracle for the Inn. Nothing would give me more pleasure that winning the lottery that I play 1x a week, A dollar and a dream thing, all I play..... to win it and to bring the Inn back and do wonders for my church. (Episcopal Church of the Epiphany)  

Please keep me posted on this issue of Saving The Inn as I am deeply interested.

Thank you and have a great day!

Wayne Murray
West State Barber"

Thank you, Mr. Murray, for taking the time to write and share your thoughts. There are many like you who believe the Inn is worth saving, and who feel a convenient store/gas station, while certainly convenient, might be more appropriate in another locale in town. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for your Lotto hopes, and for miracle-workers to save -- and restore -- our Sherburne Inn.

Monday, October 8, 2012

The Sherburne Inn: It's Time to Put Our Money Where Our Mouth Is

So one person said this: "I'll give you $50 this week, and $50 next, is that okay?"

Another said "I'll pledge $100, that's all I can do." Still another: "I'm working on a college account, but is $100 okay?"

These are the people of Sherburne.

I grew up in this town. I spent many hours at the Sherburne Inn, either at dinner, or at wedding receptions, or at the bar having a glass of wine. Everybody has a story, people who married there, or worked there, or had times there like I did, social gatherings where people met and talked and got to know each other a little better. The Inn, in its current incarnation, was built in the early 1900s, opened in 1915 (or by some accounts, 1917). Prior to that it was called The Sherburne House, a glorious wood building that burned twice, and was finally rebuilt of brick. The ghosts of the Sherburne Inn are many, spirits of people who lived and died in this town, who made money and who didn't; residents of a village that many of us call charming, a small place that breeds extraordinary people. Sherburne is a generous town, an historical town. And now, if progress has its way, Sherburne will lose The Sherburne Inn. If this happens it will not be a shame. It will be a tragedy, one that once the bulldozers hit ground, can never be reversed.

Forces are at work. The current owner has held onto this building, and the adjacent one -- a former grocery store -- for awhile. He is due the return on his investment. God bless. But does that mean that in place of historic structures we are left with a convenience store and gas station? Must we of this town be submitted to the blight of other small towns here and elsewhere, where gas stations and stale donuts in paper bags are the hallmark of our community? Must we become another crossroads where travelers fill their tanks and move on? If the forces have their way, that's exactly what will happen.

There are people who launched from this town about whom we can be proud. Clarence Gaines, horse man and dogfood entrepreneur. John Gaines, Clarence's son, founder of The Breeders' Cup. Charlie Palmer, premiere restauranteur. Mark Perrin, biotechnology CEO. Jim Hoefler, college professor. The Ulatowskis, the McDaniels, the Carriers. The list is endless and impressive. Lucille Ball visited the Sherburne Inn, as did Peter Falk. Richard Gere as a boy walked our streets when he visited his aunt and uncle. This town is historic. Our people are fine, giving, visionary. And yet now here we are, at the 11th hour, desperate to save yet another historic building and property from destruction. Desperate to save our town from  the ultimate failing. To put a convenience store and gas pumps in the center is tantamount to giving up. Our municipality has caved. Yes, it will bring tax revenue. And until midnight, every night, we will see the glaring bulbs of a place where kids on bikes will toss cigarette butts, where passersby will fill their tanks and move on to villages that care about their downtown.

I have a dream. To see an historic building on a corner full of light, full of people dining and talking and believing that something better is possible. A Cheers-type bar on the lower level, where once there was a barber shop featuring men who built our community. A place of a few beautiful suites furnished by local artisans. A restaurant featuring local organic food. Another floor where events are held...weddings and class reunions, sweet 16s, church socials, Sunday sundaes, Christmas balls, gatherings where people leave cell phones at home and go back to a time when folks dressed in their finery and came together away from glowing anonymous screens and Facebook. Do we have nothing left? Will we all now do nothing but fill our cars for no reason because we have no where to go, fill our tanks at ruined corner spots taken over by corporations and then stay home, watching mindless television? Wondering why the telephone doesn't ring?

Maybe I'm old. Maybe I'm wrong. But my god, is there anyone out there who feels like I do, that when history and fine old buildings are gone, when the history of our towns is gone, we are lost?

I can't give up yet. I have faith. But that faith is waning, and now I wonder: should I just sell my house and rent a condo in Florida until that town, too, falls to waste in a country that seems no longer to care?

Pledge to Save The Sherburne Inn. We need your help. Pledge at this email address and make a difference. Nothing may ever have been more important for our community. kyasas@aol.com. 

Save The Sherburne Inn

Dear friends,

It has come to our attention that the Sherburne Inn and the former Big M grocery store buildings are to be sold and torn down.  The buyer is set to put a convenience store and gas station on that corner in Sherburne.

Once again, Sherburne stands to lose yet another property to "progress."  The deal is going forward unless there is a counter-offer by Friday of this week .  The owner has stated that a non-refundable deposit of $150,000 will hold the properties until the New Year, by which time whoever offers that sum either comes up with the purchase price or forfeits the deposit.

The amount of the offer must be $425,000, which purchases both properties.  Beyond that, however, is what is the appropriate use of that property?  Neither building has been maintained well in the recent past.  The Inn has stood vacant for approximately seven years.  If we are to restore the Inn, the cost could be upward of $3 million.  An alternative exists, but it will not be easy.  Both buildings would need to be torn down and an architecturally pleasing hotel/ restaurant/event facility could be put in its place.  The cost to start from the ground up is more efficient, although the dollar amount will not be significantly lower.

A group of concerned citizens is forming a partnership, requesting that each investor commit $1,000 (or any combination thereof...5 investors at $200, 10 at $100, etc.). We are hoping, if the $150,000 can be raised this week, that ultimately 3,000 individuals will commit $1,000 to save these historic buildings, or in turn replace them with historically appropriate structures. The news of the buildings being sold and torn down is fresh, and time is very short. If there are enough interested people who will invest without demanding an immediate return, then Sherburne can have an Inn again, but we need to know by Friday whether or not this is possible.

This is a bitter pill for Sherburne.  It is happening everywhere in New York State, and indeed in our country.  If we are going to save Sherburne from becoming a crossroads where gas and beer are for sale on the anchor corner instead of a community with a beautiful heart, we have to act swiftly and decisively.  
Please email me at kyasas@aol.com with your pledge.

Friday, October 5, 2012

What Do The Critters Know?

I'm starting to feel like one of those oldtimers who sits on the front stoop with a toothpick in her mouth, scanning the sky for signs. "Yep," I can almost imagine mumbling. "Hard winter a-comin'. Them thar geese are a-flyin' in a snow pattern."

Of course I don't know the first thing about geese or if they even have a "snow pattern." But I have been noticing...things. There are the birds, starlings I think, that congregate every day at the same time in the big sugar maple out back and tweet furiously, tweeting, I might add, of the old-fashioned kind. They seem to be doing something important in bird world, like sounding an alarm. And I don't mean a couple of birds, I'm talking masses of them that would make Tipi Hedren's teeth rattle. Then there are the caterpillars. Over the summer, I noticed an abundance of white caterpillars with spiky black hairs outside my house, on the porch, and on the golf course greens. I've never seen this kind of caterpillar before. Finally there are the squirrels. They've been a busy bunch just lately, racing madly around the yard and sailing through treetops, gathering gathering gathering. This afternoon my faithful dog murdered one and deposited it at the back door like a little warning. See this fat, fluffy thing? Harry seemed to be saying, tail wagging and idiot dog-smile on his face. Hard winter a-comin'! 

I don't have a clue what the appearance of white caterpillars means, or for that matter why the squirrels are fat and busy or why I have a fowl symphony above my roofline. It was balmy today when I mowed my lawn in a tee shirt, and winter felt far away. Still, I keep scanning a cold blue sky with sharp edges. Autumn is here, preparing to kick summer out on her sorry behind. And there's this feeling that snow is coming. Lots and lots of snow.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Preservationists: A Dying Breed?

I was thinking about the old octagon house over the weekend. The mansion, which stood majestically on the south end of my village until the mid-1960s, was an interesting piece of history here, both architecturally and otherwise. The web netted the following article about this beautiful home.

Sherburne, NY Octagon House, Corner of South Main and Chapel

May 16, 1965
Octagon House Doomed

An old octagon house, built by a Sherburne doctor a century and a quarter ago because he didn't like the howling of the winds around a conventional house, is about to fall before the bulldozers.

The house, now the property of the Sherburne Post of the American Legion and used by the group since 1946, has outlived it usefulness and will be replaced by a modern Legion Home more in keeping with the times.

The house was built just prior to 1840 by Dr. Devillo White, a well known "playboy" doctor of that day. Dr. White, who was disturbed always by the moaning of the wind around the cornices of other homes he had owned, determined that he would have a house built in such a manner as to do away with the wind noises that he detested. Such a house had been built somewhere in the Hudson Valley and plans were drawn, using the Hudson Valley mansion as a pattern.

The next task was to find workmen in the Sherburne area who could build an eight-sided house, and such buildings were a rarity in Central New York at that time.

The house is built of concrete, one of the first times concrete was used in wall construction in upstate New York. It has a circular staircase that ends in a "captain's Walk" in a cupola on the roof. When completed about 1841 Dr. White moved in, but history does not enlighten us in whether the architecture stopped the noise of the moaning wind.

Dr. White as a young man is depicted as being a "gay young blade" who lived life to the full in his village. His early life was spent in a hotel of questionable reputation owned by his father, Dr. Asa White, who later went west. Also, the young man had done his share in the sowing of the proverbial wild oats but he got hold of himself at the age of 23 and began to read medicine, as was the custom of the day.

He studied hard and soon outstripped his teacher, an older doctor in town. When he finally started to practice he didn't have the means, according to an old history, "wherein to buy a pair of saddlebags."

Always a "hail fellow and well met," Dr. White began to make and to spend money, and money seemed to mean little to him. The story is told of a poor minister who owed the doctor $75. The big-hearted doctor kidded the minister for awhile and then settled the whole bill for 50 cents.

All rooms on each floor of the octagon house open from the center hall and most are five-sided. The heating plant is steam, but the radiators, unlike any seen in this area, are made of copper. Some of the original wallpaper still clings to the rooms and much of the original carpeting is still in place.

Dr. White married Caroline Pratt, daughter of a leading resident of the village, about the time he began to read medicine. He was very popular and is said to have entertained lavishly.

Generous to a fault, he could not bear to see a family in need. Most of the poor and needy that he had brought back to health were not called upon to pay.

Dr. White was a staunch Whig, later embracing the Republican party. He had the knack of making money in investments and gathered together a fortune in government securities during the Civil War. It was Dr. White who presented the monument honoring Civil War veterans, which still stands in the center of the village.

The old octagon house of Dr. White is about to fall and with it goes a legend of the days before the Civil War, when people lived a more simple life, although they were building a nation.

Although I was a child when the octagon mansion came down, its unique pie-shaped rooms and spiral staircase and mahogany banisters reduced to rubble by "forward thinkers," I have heard for decades the laments of people who remember seeing it fall, and who believed that in spite of the more "modern building in keeping with the times" put in its place, the loss of the octagon house was a tragedy. Indeed, it is usually a tragedy when an historic building -- even if an impractical one -- is taken down because people do not have the vision nor the respect for history to save it. 

About Me

Newspaper columnist; blogger; author of Delta Dead; author of 101 Tip$ From My Depression-Era Parents; author of Australian Fly; editor: ...And I Breathed (author, Jason Garner, former CEO of Global Music at Live Nation), "A History of the Lawrence S. Donaldson Residence"; "The Port Washington Yacht Club: A Centennial Perspective"; "The Northeastern Society of Periodontists: The First Fifty Years"; editor: NESP Bulletin; editor: PWYC Mainsail; past editorial director: The International Journal of Fertility & Women's Medicine; past editor of: Long Island Power & Sail, Respiratory Review; Medical Travelers' Advisory; School Nurse News; Clear Images; Periodontal Clinical Investigations; Community Nurse Forum