Passionate Nunda Restores Hidden 77-Year-Old Site Marker

NUNDA – The community poured their hearts into the Nunda Historical Society’ mission to right a historical wrong.

For 77 years, a sign just west of the village has designated the site where the first of 17 locks carried the Genesee Valley Canal from the Keshequa Valley, through Oakland, and over the hill to Portage.

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“Over time the marker had become worn, weather beaten and hidden by brush,” said a press release from Tom Cook with the Nunda Historical Society. “Since the State of New York no longer maintains the markers, the Nunda Historical Society decided to take action.”

Three members, Jeff Long, Sue Long and Gary Ludwig, volunteered to undertake the restoration project with the support of property owner Harold ‘Bud’ Long. After the village crew removed the sign, Ludwig and Jeff Long took it to Chris Gross, who donated his time and equipment needed to sandblast the marker and prime it with a rust inhibitor.

The Longs carefully repainted the sign matching the colors recommended by the State. After the area around the existing pole was cleared, the historical marker was returned to its original base by the Nunda Village crew.

“A big Thank You to Chris and the Nunda Village Crew for their valuable assistance with this project,” said Cook’s release. “This marks the fourth historical marker that the Nunda Historical Society has erected or restored in and around Nunda.”

In recent years, the Nunda Historical Society obtained grants from the Pomeroy Foundation for historical markers for the Village Square, Lock 42 on the north edge of the village and Oakwood Cemetery. The Society hopes to add additional markers for significant sites throughout the town in the coming years.

Nunda Historical Society members Gary Ludwig, Jeff Long and Sue Long stand next to the state
historical marker they recently restored on Route 436 in Nunda. The sign marks the beginning
of the once famous seventeen lock stretch of the old Genesee Valley Canal. (Photo/Nunda Historical Society)