In 2004, New York's Hudson Athens Lighthouse Preservation Society (HALPS) is celebrating 20 years of commitment to the continued preservation of the Hudson Athens Lighthouse, which itself is 130 years old this year. Last year this lighthouse on the Hudson River was open more often to the public than ever before. You may visit the lighthouse during the boating season (June to October) by calling (518) 822-1014 to make reservations on board the paddlewheeler Spirit of Hudson. Upon request, the lighthouse is always open to boaters.
In 2003, the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation granted the society $11,000 in private funds from the Athens Generating Plant. This grant money will be used for painting all of the exterior trim, as well as the walls and trim on the interior. Unfortunately, the ravages of water and time are taking their toll on the foundation of the lighthouse. Hudson Athens Lighthouse is on the edge of the main river channel and is therefore more susceptible to wake damage than any other lighthouse on the river. The shifting foundation is causing harm to the granite foundation blocks, cracking in the window cornices and brickwork, and cracking in the corners of the interior southeastern walls.
An underwater survey must be completed to determine the extent of the problem and how the problem can be addressed and rectified. The cost of the entire project from the first step to the last will be in excess of $100,000. HALPS is requesting donations and is also searching for grants for the restoration of the foundation. The Hudson Athens Lighthouse Preservation Society is a 501(c)(3) organization. Checks should be made out to HALPS and earmarked, “Foundation Project.” Please mail your contribution to HALPS, Box 145, Athens, New York 10215.
Thanks to HALPS Vice President Louise E. Bliss and volunteer Bob Taylor for submitting this information.
This story appeared in the
May 2004 edition of Lighthouse Digest Magazine. The print edition contains more stories than our internet edition, and each story generally contains more photographs - often many more - in the print edition. For subscription information about the print edition, click here.
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