Upcoming happenings along historic canals

Pike County Historical Society and the Delaware and Hudson Canal History Project offer assorted programs and events in Lackawaxen Township, along the towpath.

| 17 May 2022 | 05:34

A new historical venture aiming to bring to life historic tales of the Delaware and Hudson Canal’s path through Pike County has been announced by Pike County Historical Society. The Society is fortunate to have use of historic Lock House 16, which was built around 1829 by the D&H Canal Company, as were several others, for the purpose of housing the all important “lock tenders” who were essential to the use of the canal. They operated the locks to control water levels to allow boats to pass carrying anthracite coal to the markets of New York and Philadelphia.

Lock House 16 is located on Towpath Road in Glen Eyre, Pa. The road runs from Rowland to Hawley and is named appropriately - as it follows the route of the canal’s original “towpath” - or the path created for mules to pull the boats along the canal, mirroring the flow of the scenic and often wild Lackawaxen River.

While often forgotten , the path the D&H carved through Pike was important. Use of the Lackawaxen River answered the burning question of how to get coal from Honesdale to the Delaware River and onto Kingston, NY. The idea of using this new type of coal found in the mines of Northeastern Pennsylvania wasn’t easy to sell, but two brothers, William and Maurice Wurts, had a plan.

Here begins the story these local historians mean to tell, with all the trials and tribulations of construction as well as the human side of the project, canal life and the importance of Pike County’s part in the events.

Open House on May 29 at Canal House 16 Glen Eyre, Pa.

The Pike County Historical Society at Canal House 16 invite all to attend a special Open House on Sunday, May 29, from 12-3 p.m. On this day, the first panels of an innovative outdoor exhibit will be on display and allow guests to peek inside historic Lock House 16 as well as tour Locks 22 and 23 - located a few miles away -which will be guided by the owner of the property.

The Pike County Historic Preservation Trust will be available to present lock houses and plaques recognizing their historic value. Old time live music will be provided by the Bard of the Hills from 12-2 p.m. An old time barbeque will be at Lock House 16 - 495 Towpath Road, Glen Eyre, Pa.

Those interested in touring the locks can register at Lock House 16 and get passes to visit Locks 22 and 23. Bring along a lawn chair and wear sturdy shoes if you plan on touring the locks. Plenty of parking is available in the field behind Lock House 16 and visitors can say hello to resident miniature donkeys, Claire and Francis...aka “Frankie”. This event is free to the public.

Local version of Woodstock: Tunes Along the Towpath 2

PCHS is invested in the history of this pristine and beautiful part of Pike County. They have teamed up with Growing Lackawaxen to host an outdoor concert on Saturday, June 18. The concert will be held outside in the fields behind Canal House 16 (495 Towpath Road Glen Eyre, Pa.)and will feature local favorite Dan Engvaldsen doing an acoustic performance at 3 p.m., followed by the critically acclaimed band Feast of Friends, performing a tribute to the music of Jim Morrison and the Doors and more. Tickets to this outdoor event are $25. Bring a lawn chair, pack a cooler and wear tie-dye for an afternoon of music.

Proceeds from ticket sales benefit both PCHS and the Care Cabin of Lackawaxen Twp. Call 570-296-8126 or email pikemuse@ptd.net for more info as to where to purchase tickets in your neck of the woods!

For kids: Canal Camp July 11, 12, 13, 14

PCHS believes that history can be fun! Day Camp will be held from 10-2 on several days during the week of July 11, 2022. Offered to children aged 8-12, the day will consist of team building games and challenges which will teach them about the history of the D&H Canal as well as build their knowledge of the rivers, streams and the wildlife of the area. Have kid(s) bring along a bag lunch. If you need help with providing lunch, let PCHS know. Parents are welcome to stay and participate or just relax on the front porch and enjoy the view. Participation is limited to 10 kids per day. Sign up by calling 570-296-8126 or emailing pikemuse@ptd.net