POP PHOTOGRAPHY CONTEST TO HONOR CITY HALL AND LOCK 17 CENTENNIALS
A photography contest honoring the 100th anniversary of Little Falls’ City Hall and the 1916 completion of an enlarged Lock 17, sponsored by Preserve Our Past, is scheduled for the upcoming 2016 fall season. Cash prizes will be awarded by local judges who are well known, prize winning photographers themselves. Subject matter will be restricted to two categories; City Hall and Lock 17. Entries will be accepted in September and winners announced at an exhibition and awards ceremony at Little Falls’ Copper Moose in October. Rules and procedures will be published during the first part of August. Photographers are encouraged to take advantage of summer light to take their shots.
The construction of Little Falls’ majestic City Hall was approved by the public in 1914 with a favorable vote of 738 to 45. David H. Burrell, Little Falls’ most generous benefactor, offered to contribute $50,000 if the city would match it. A New York City architect was hired, plans for the building discussed in contentious Common Council meetings, contractors sought, and work begun. Staying on budget was a continuous problem with Mr Burrell contributing an additional $10,000 to make it possible to continue the project. The building’s cornerstone was laid in October of 1916 with much fanfare as described on the front page of local newspapers; speeches, bands, and the burying of a time capsule while the crowd cheered. City Hall was fully functional by December 1918 with all departments in residence.
The Erie Canal was so popular and economically successful throughout the 19th and early 20th century that it went through two gradual but dramatic enlargements From its original measurement of 4 feet deep and 40 feet wide, it was enlarged during the period of 1836-1862 to 7 feet deep and 70 feet wide. Between 1903 and 1918, the canal took on its present configuration of 120-200 feet wide and 12-14 feet. The then highest lift lock on the canal was Lock 17 at Little Falls and was finished in 1916, two years before the Barge Canal, as it was then called, was reopened to public use. The entire length of the canal was accepted on the National Register of Historic Places in 2014.