Aug 1, 2011

Saving Our Treasures

Yesterday, I had an amazing experience. I decided to research the WPA items at the Lehigh Valley Historical Society. Although I found that particular documentation lacking, out of nowhere, an elderly lady handed me a photo from her pocketbook; a picture of the Boat Landing she had taken with a Kodak Brownie camera in the early 1940's. She had the picture with her because she had shown it to several friends who also lamented the loss of our icons.

Today I went to the park to photograph the remaining element of that structure, the steps, to write a post I intended to title "Lost Treasures". Despite my fear of ticks and other organic matter, I proceeded down the steps and pushed the bushes aside. There to my surprise, I found that the retaining walls were mostly still there.

Emboldened by this discovery, I went over to the other side of the creek and worked my way through the riparian buffer; there to my utter amazement I saw that the curved creek walls of the landing have withstood the years of time. Despite decades of neglect by our Park Department, I believe that a half dozen people equipped with a few clippers could unveil a lost treasure. There is a few large trees which have grown on the landing, and there are missing stones, but most of it still exists, waiting only for a few urban archaeologists with an appreciation of what once adorned this park. Will you join me and help restore this gift from our past?

UPDATE: The above post was written in October of 2009. Although I succeeded in organizing a small group of volunteers who would indeed reveal the steps, I've had less success with the Park Department and Trexler Trust in regard to preserving our WPA monuments. Please join me at an upcoming meeting for the Friends Of Allentown's WPA Heritage.

Tuesday, Sept. 6, 7:00pm Allentown Library, Lower Level Conference Room


gary ledebur said...

MM: great job uncovering the past and trying to preserve it. In addition to being the "Tribune of the People," you are the "Archeologist of the Lehigh Valley.?

I cannot help but note that you post about the work of a disciple of John Maynard Keynes, who was finally buried with the debt ceiling agreement. Requiescat in pace.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Molovinsky

We support your park restoration efforts and will join you in every endeavor.

Perhaps with your connections, you could contact some park official hopefully today to tell them the first open meadow in the Parkway had more than 300 to 400 people enjoying cookouts on Sunday.

The entire hillside was covered with cookouts, children and lots of fun activities. We're sure the mayor would have enjoyed seeing so many there. Unfortunately, there are not enough parking spaces so cars lined the main roadway although signs state no street parking.

And because there are only two permanent toilets, this was inadequate to accommodate the very large number of parkgoers. If this had been a concert venue, the health board would have closed it!

What's going on in the Parkway in terms of the lack of sanitation is deplorable.

Another area popularly called the "canoe parking lot" had at least 200 people on Sunday and there's not even a single toilet to provide necessary sanitation.
Where do you think those folks go?

Anonymous said...

Anon 7:47

All good citizens, in such circumstances, hold it until appropriate facilities are avaialable.

Don't they?

Anonymous said...

Anon 747am (probably Permission to Post guy) - have you ever thought about starting your own blog instead of trying to change the topics of everyone else's?

michael molovinsky said...

anon 9:08, i think the shortage of bathroom facilities in the park is an important issue, and not so off topic as many other comments submitted here

Anonymous said...

Thanks Mike - sorry, I got carried away.

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Pam said...
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