Tour D&H Canal houses during Hawley Winterfest

Self-guided tour will take in four historic houses festively decorated for the holidays


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  • Lock House 21 (Photo provided)




  • Canal house






  • Canal painting by Juan Espino




— The Historic House Tour on Saturday, Dec. 9, during Hawley Winterfest takes a close look at Delaware and Hudson (D&H) Canal Lock Houses dating from the 1820s.

A self-guided tour includes four houses festively decorated for the holidays. Hear the stories of years gone by from the owners who have preserved these sites and made it their own.

When the D&H Canal was in operation, these houses served as residences for the lock tenders. They allowed the canal boats passage through the gates as the canal varied in elevation along its 108-mile route between Honesdale, Pa., and Rondout, near Kingston, N.Y., on the Hudson River. The canal operated from 1828 to 1898, with its chief purpose to haul anthracite coal to market. The lock tenders were vital to its successful operation.

The Holiday House Tour begins at the D&H Canal Park at Lock 31, which is owned and managed by the Wayne County Historical Society. Although the lock house no longer stands, participants will meet at the circa 1820s Daniels Farmhouse, which served as an inn for canal families and crews, and provided a canal store.

While at the Canal Park, hear about its history and tales, and become oriented to the experience as you take this journey back in time to the four sites down the canal, from Hawley to Lackawaxen along Towpath Road — a scenic drive along the Lackawaxen River. The road follows the path of the canal and towpath, where horses and mules at one time pulled the canal boats.

Look for remnants of the stone walls of the canal and locks along the way, all constructed entirely by hand labor. Participants will visit Lock House 24, Lock House 22, Lock House 21, and Lock House 19. To respect their privacy, the names of the owners and exact locations are not being announced beforehand.

Advanced tickets availableTickets are $20 and available for advance purchase at the Hawley Silk Mill, Settlers Inn, Lake Wallenpaupack Visitors Center, the Hawley Library, Teeter’s Furniture, and the Wayne County Historical Society in Honesdale. The day of the tour, the D&H Canal Park at Lock 31 will be open from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., where tickets may be purchased. A portion of each ticket sold will be donated to the Wayne County Historical Society to benefit the restoration of the Canal Park at Lock 31. The tour runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

For more detailed information and a full schedule of Hawley Winterfest activities, call the Lake Wallenpaupack Visitors Center at 570-226-2141 or visit HawleyWinterfest.com.

Hawley Winterfest is presented by the Downtown Hawley Partnership, a non-profit organization dedicated to maintaining and enhancing the high standard of living that the community and tourists enjoy. For more information, visit www.visithawleypa.com.






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