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Town of West Almond Related Articles

Allegany County Has Fire Tower (in West Almond) - 1935

From the Belmont Dispatch, March 28, 1935 (researched by Mary Rhodes).

Allegany County Has Fire Tower

Boys At West Almond CCC Camp Build 80-Foot Structure Which Will Observe Fires Within 20-Mile Radius

West Almond Fire Tower NYS Archives
Jersey Hill Fire Tower in West Almond, 1930s. Photo is courtesy of the New York State Archives, from the New York State Conservation Department. 
L. A. Holmberg, Project Superintendent of Camp 77, located at West Almond, announces the completion of the Jersey Hill fire tower, erected by CCC labor.

The 80-foot steel tower was furnished by the Federal government through District Ranger R. L. Witherell of Olean. He is in charge of New York State Fire District No. 9, which embraces Allegany, Steuben and Cattaraugus counties.

Other towers in this district are: The Hartzfelt tower on Rock City Hill, near Olean, and the Summit tower in Allegany State Park, near Salamanca. Two other towers in the park are under park administration.

Mr. Holmberg feels that an enviable no-accident record has been set by the efficient crew in this hazardous undertaking. Rigid safety measures were enforced, and much credit is sure Cultural Foreman J. J. Jordan and Foreman Archie Shaw, under whose direction the tower was erected.

The men were carefully selected and trained in teamwork. Scaffolding was lashed to the framework with light rope, an inch rope guard rail strung around the tower at each staging, and work was confined to the inside of the tower. Stairs were completed to the top of each section as the work progressed.

In two or three weeks an observer will be stationed to watch for fires up to 20 miles from the tower site. Many acres of state land lie in the vicinity. Communication will soon be established to the camp buy one and one-half miles of telephone line which the same crew of men will erect.

A cabin at the foot of the tower is expected to be completed before April 15th and the one acre tower site will be improved, as will the road into the area.

These new fire fighting facilities will greatly reduce the area burned over annually in the vicinity. All fires have a small beginning and the promptness with which they are detected and reported has an important bearing on the amount of work needed to extinguish them.

The Spring fire season may be here within a week, if dry weather prevails, and will last until the new growth of grass and other herbs cover the dead material left from last year, which will be about June 1st. Persons in the woods and fields during this period should be extremely careful with fire in any form.

 


 

 

jerseyhill

This photo of the Jersey Hill fire tower was submitted by Jim Gelser of Wyoming, NY.  He states it was removed, dates unknown. 

There were several fire towers and observation towers that stood in Allegany County, but, do not have much written history of them or pictures. If anyone has photos of others and/or information or articles of them, please contact the webmaster.  email: Ron Taylor, Webmaster

 

 

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