Items tagged with 'Justin Devendorf'

How a strawberry grown from a "wasteland" in Albany helped spread a national strawberry craze

74 Morris Street Wilsons Strawberry

By Justin Devendorf

At the corner of Morris and Knox next to a small neighborhood park stands a two-story brick building, its front bearing a worn coat of paint. Built in 1838 in the Federal Style, it's the oldest still-standing building in Albany's Park South neighborhood.

But maybe more notable than its age is the fact that home and the land around it played a vital role in the growth of the strawberry trade in the United States, helping to set off a "strawberry fever."

This is the story of 74 Morris Street and The Wilson's Albany strawberry.

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Frederick Hinckel and the Hinckel Brewery

Hinckel Brewery ESP background aerial photo Tim Jackson

The Hinckel Brewery building with the Empire State Plaza in the background. / photo: Tim Jackson

By Justin Devendorf

On the northwest corner of Park Avenue and South Swan Street in Albany's Hudson/Park neighborhood, a multi-building complex takes up almost half a city block and dominates the immediate area. Constructed in the late 1880s, this behemoth played a vital role in the brewing and distribution of beer across the city and the country.

This is the story of immigrant, brewmaster, and former Albany resident Frederick Hinckel -- and the Hinckel Brewery.

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Forever wild: The advocacy of Verplanck Colvin

Verplanck Colvin composite

By Justin Devendorf

A few dozen miles south of Tupper Lake is some of the most rugged and remote wilderness in New York State.

This is where Seward Mountain stands. Named after Secretary of State William H. Seward, it's the 24th tallest Adirondack High Peak at 4,347 feet in height. After walking for several miles through a flat, dense forest, climbers can expect a very steep and challenging hike up the mountain's exposed bedrock in order to reach the tree-covered summit. And in 1870 it was an Albany native who became the first person to record a successful ascent of this formidable peak.

Verplanck Colvin was a lawyer -- but he'd become known as the Great Surveyor of the Adirondacks and an advocate for the preservation of the six million acres that now make up the Adirondack Park.

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Hooks, bells, ticker tape machines, and fires -- the story of 25 Delaware Ave

25 Delaware Ave front 2018-March

By Justin Devendorf

Somewhere in the basement of a two-story building in the city of Albany, an electrical wire short circuits. This causes sparks to ignite, leading to a small fire. Within a few minutes, smoke billows out from the windows as the fire engulfs the building. Someone calls the fire department.

As onlookers begin to gather outside the blaze wondering what, if anything, they can do, in the distance the sound of emergency sirens can be heard, getting louder as it draws closer to the scene of the fire. An Albany Fire Department fire truck pulls up to the building, firefighters quickly work to extinguish the fire, as well as rescue anyone who might be trapped inside.

This scenario has played out countless times in the long history of the Albany Fire Department. And for almost half a century, those calls for service came in through a system of telegraphs, hooks, call boxes, and ticker tape -- into a small building at 25 Delaware Ave.

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The Elouise and milk bottles

Elouise apartments aerial overhead

The Elouise is at the corner of South Lake and Western / photo: Tim Jackson

By Justin Devendorf

At South Lake Avenue and Western Avenue in Albany stands an eight-story building. Built in the late 1920s in the Classical Revival style, it's a landmark of the Pine Hills neighborhood, surpassed in height only by the Royce on the Park apartment building on nearby Hudson Avenue.

Outside the building a bronze plaque that greets all who enter simply reads: "Elouise Apartments 11 So. Lake Ave."

(there's more)

The Glynn Mansion and the story of Martin Glynn

Glynn mansion Willett Street Albany

By Justin Devendorf

Overlooking Washington Park very close to where State Street and Willett Street meet stands a three-story, pink sandstone building with a Romanesque design and an interior of intricate woodwork.

It was in this building that the only resident of the city of Albany who has ever ascended to the governorship of the State of New York once lived.

That resident was Martin Henry Glynn.

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