ALBANY - New York is recommending 28 sites be added to the State and National Registers of Historic Places, including much of the canal system.
The Barge Canal Historic District includes the four branches of the canal system that was first built in the 1820s; the Erie, Champlain, Oswego, and Cayuga-Seneca canals. The district sprawls 450 miles over 18 counties, including Erie, Monroe, Seneca and Wayne, and encompasses 23,000 acres.
Other sites recommended for the registry, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Friday, include the Corlies-Ritter-Hart House in Poughkeepsie; Public School #60 in Buffalo; the Philip Argus House and Winery in Pulteney, Steuben County; and the Glenwolde Park Historic District in Tarrytown, Westchester County. Dutchess County had six properties on the list, and Westchester and Monroe counties each had two.
"New York's rich history is among its greatest assets and remains a strong draw for this state's fast-growing tourism industry," Cuomo said in a statement. "By nominating these sites as historic places, we are working to preserve that legacy for future generations, while also encouraging travelers from every corner of the world to visit and explore the sites that made New York the Empire State."
If a property or a district gets onto the state and federal registers, it can be eligible for public preservation programs, such as grants and tax credits. New York has 90,000 historic buildings, structures and sites throughout the state listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
A report Wednesday from the state Canal Corp, which oversees the 524-mile canal system, said the canal is still an economic engine. It generates more than $6.2 billion in non-recreational economic activity each year, mainly through hydropower and industrial uses, the report said, and 26,000 jobs.
Here's details from the state on some of the sites recommended for the registers:
Corlies-Ritter-Hart House, Poughkeepsie – Built ca. 1872, the Second Empire-style home was associated with a series of families important to the history of local music education, performance, and commerce.
Dover Stone Church, Dover Plains – This geological formation of metamorphic rock situated in a densely wooded location in eastern Dutchess County was a celebrated and much-visited tourist destination in New York State by the middle decades of the 19th century.
Charles Morschauser house, Poughkeepsie – The Queen Anne-style home was built in 1902 for Charles Morschauser, a prominent trial lawyer during the late 19th and early 20th centuries and defense counsel in the nationally followed trial of Harry K. Thaw, accused of killing renowned architect Stanford White.
Violet Avenue School, Poughkeepsie – Completed in 1940, the Colonial Revival school is closely associated with President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who influenced its design; it was built under the auspices of his New Deal school building program administered by the Public Works Administration.
The Zion Pilgrim Methodist Episcopal Church Site, Fishkill – The archaeologically significant historic resource in the Baxtertown area was the site of a church, erected ca. 1848, that served as the central religious and social gathering place of an early rural African-American community in the Hudson Valley.
Public School #60, Buffalo – Completed in 1922, PS 60 represents the evolution of the Buffalo public school system, first as a neighborhood elementary school erected and expanded as the city grew and later as a vocational training and community center.
First Presbyterian Church, Le Roy – Erected in 1825-26 and modified subsequently during the course of the 19th and 20th centuries, the church has stood prominently at the center of the village since its construction, offering a gathering place for the community.
First Unitarian Church, Rochester – Built 1961-62, this nationally significant example of Modern architecture was designed by internationally prominent architect Louis I. Kahn and is regarded as his breakthrough moment, where he transcended his position as a good modern architect to become one of the most influential architectural minds of the late 20th century.
North Star School #11, Hamlin – The rare surviving mid-19th century rural school building has been serving the community for its 170-year existence, first as school built in 1844, and then as a community center, beginning in 1952, and now as a local history center.
Philip Argus House and Winery, Pulteney – The 1886 stone house and 1890 stone winery were built by Philip Argus, a German immigrant who recognized that the Finger Lakes area had similar weather and soil conditions as the wine regions of Europe and helped make winemaking a major part of the region's economy.
Ambrose Lapham House, Palmyra – Constructed 1869-1870, the Italianate style home was constructed for Lapham, a Palmyra native who made his fortune in banking in the Detroit area and selected Palmyra as a place to retire, remembering the rural, pastoral landscape of the Finger Lakes.
Glenwolde Park Historic District, Tarrytown – The subdivision of largely intact Tudor Revival and Colonial Revival-style homes was developed in the 1920s in response to the expansion of the local economy and the related increase in demand for housing.
Metropolitan Life Insurance Company Hall of Records, Yonkers – The Neoclassical building, designed to mask its fireproof construction, was built in 1906 as a remote repository for Metropolitan Life's records as it grew to become one of the largest insurance companies in the United States.