Richmond Aqueduct

Richmond Aqueduct
Second Largest Aqueduct Built on the Enlarged Erie Canal (1856-1917)

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Assemblyman Oaks Visits Montezuma

NYS Assemblyman Robert Oaks visited the Montezuma Heritage Park for a walk on the Richmond Aqueduct Trail yesterday. He recently took on Montezuma, Aurelius and Sennett from Cayuga County as part of the state redistricting.

Mike Riley, Canal Historian and Trail Boss for the Heritage Park, explained the importance of the historic sites in Montezuma that tell the dynamic story of the evolution of the New York State Canal System.

Along for the walk were  Park Design Committee members Paul Baker, Dan Randolph, and Stan Longyear, Town Board member, Tom Fitzsimmons, the Assemblyman's  Communications Coordinator, Louise Hoffman Broach, and myself.

Thursday, August 16, 2012


Fifty years after the Viet Nam War started, three former Montezuma Ex-Marines who served in the war.  Rich Vanderwalker,  now living in Texas, Dan Randolph and Stan Longyear work together to install the posts for the park's new kiosks. For these guys, service work has gone on to help out their communities. Denny and Dustin, highway department employees, worked with them to install the posts at the two trailhead entrances at High Street and Chapman Road yesterday.


The kiosks are being funded by the Cayuga County Creating Healthy Places program.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Tour explores canal's relationship with town

Mike Riley explains how the Richmond Aqueduct carried the Erie Canal waters over the Seneca River at the August 11th Canal Splash Tour in Montezuma

Tour explores canal's relationship with town

Thanks to Mike Riley for leading another successful Canal Splash event and to everyone that came out for the tour!

Friday, August 10, 2012


Exchange Hotel at the  junction of the Erie and Cayuga-Seneca Canals is subject of a new mural in Montezuma being painted by Muralist Dawn Jordan.

The Town of Montezuma will soon receive the gift of a historic mural that will highlight the Town’s historic canal heritage. The Montezuma Historical Society has initiated the project on behalf of the Town for a new mural, and is being helped with a donation from A-Verdi Storage Containers and a grant from the Cayuga Community Foundation. A-Verdi is an owned & operated business in Montezuma for over 30 years and is the premier provider of Storage & office solutions throughout New York State. The Cayuga Community Foundation is a component fund of the Central New York Community Foundation that assists non-profit organizations with vital programs in education, health, social services, the arts, civic,  environmental concerns, and the preservation of historic resources in Cayuga County.

Mark DeCracker of Lyons, and creator of Mural Mania encouraged Montezuma to join with other communities along the Erie Canal to share the visual story of New York State Erie Canal history.  Today it is hard to visualize what Montezuma looked like during the early Erie Canal era.  MHS is providing the town with the mural to reconnect with its sense of heritage and place, and to share its important story with others. The original Erie Canal that joined with the Cayuga/Seneca Canal in 1828, and flowed through Montezuma have long been filled in. Gone are many the businesses that lined the canal streets. Since almost all of the original buildings with businesses that served the canal and community no longer exist, there wasn’t even a place to paint the mural. When Joe Verdi, owner of A-Verdi Containers learned of the dilemma, he generously donated a 8’ x 20 ‘ container to paint the mural on. 

Dawn painting the mural under her homemade awning.
Dawn Jordan, muralist, is painting the mural in A-Verdi’s parking lot on Route 31. Dawn, a talented artist has painted several local Erie Canal murals including Port Byron, Weedsport, Jordan and Lyons depicting Erie Canal history.  To help fund the project, the historical society has held several fundraisers.  The mural is based on a historic photo of the Erie Canal, the Cayuga/Seneca Canal, the crossover bridge, and the Exchange Hotel that burned in 1918. Comfort Tyler, early settler and visionary, who built of one of the first boats on the Erie Canal named for its namesake, “The Montezuma,” will be painted into the picture.  The mural’s permanent location will be at the site where the Exchange was built in the 1830's located at the trailhead entrance of the Montezuma Heritage Park on High Street.  Future plans include the mural becoming part of a replica boat fa├žade of “The Montezuma.”