Thursday, February 14, 2013



The bridge across thr Delaware river at Lackawaxen, Pennsylvania to Yulan, New York is known today as the Roebling Bridge, named after its builder-designer, John August Roebling,  built in 1848 as an aqueduct , 535 feet in length, 20 feet wide with 8 feet of water depth, to carry coal barges pulled by mules,  from Pennsylvania's anthracite mines across the Delaware on the Delaware and Hudson Canal  to the Hudson River bound for NewYork City. There was a wooden plank walkway for the mules on the edge of the waterway. Today it carries vehicles with a one-way, yield to oncoming traffic, road with scenic views. The Lackawaxen Bridge was open to wagon and auto traffic in 1900.  It was the largest one of four built by Roebling for the canal. Roebling also was the designer of the Brooklyn Bridge in New York City but died before it was completed  by his son, Washington Roebling.
Due to the rapid construction of a railroad system to transport coal to New York City  the Delaware and Hudson Canal ceased operation. Lackawaxen Bridge was for sale.  Railroads were offered the structure, however, the Cornell Steamboat Line  purchased it, hoping to sell for a railroad which never happened. 
In 1908, a Scranton lumber dealer, Charles Spunks,, purchased the bridge and the roads leading to it in order to transport lumber from New York State to his Scranton business. So it soon became a toll bridge for wheeled vehicles and pedestrians which continued to about 1933 when most of the bridge woodwork was destroyed by a fire, perhaps started by locals in order to have a toll free bridge built.  Until May 1980 the Lackawaxen Bridge had several new owners and many problems, finally it became more of a tourist attraction, was then purchased by National Park Service for $75,000.00 , repairs for traffic and opened again in 1987.
Other tourist attractions near are the home of the Western Cowboy writer, Zane Grey and the site of the 1779 Battle of Minisink Ford, the only major battle of the Revolutionary War fought on the Delaware River. 

Sunday, February 10, 2013




Whorekill is Dutch,, horren kill,  aka, Whore Creek, now known as Lewes.  In 1659 they had built a fort, then in 1663 a settlement was established by forty Mennonites from Amsterdam on the ship St. Jacob, the leader being Peter Cornelisen Plockhoy. In 1664 the English in Maryland plundered these settlement and by 1671 the communities were a mix of dutch and English residents. The settlements were claimed by both the Maryland Governor and the Duke of York of New York and the governor of New York established a Court there naming  Helmanus Wiiltbank sheriff and chief justice, Sander Molleston, Otto Wollgast, and William Clasen as justices. This took place 28 February 1670 and on the third of October 1670, Maryland  took action and surveyed six tracts of land for residents which included all four of the New York appointees.
1673 the dutch retook the Delaware and New Castle, changing the Maryland policy toward Whorekill and that same year A Maryland Milita Troop of forty men led by Capt Thomas Howell seized the settlement, burned the houses, boats and took all weapons from the residents.. However, the community lived on. 
A census was made 8 May 1671 by the sheriff Wilrbank, entitled, " list of persons, young and old, who are here at Whorekill , aka, Sekonnessinck".
The Census:  Helmanus Fredricks Wiltbanck, his wife, two sons and one servant, (5);  Sander Moelsteen, his wife, two sons, one servant, (5); Otto Wolgast, his wife, one son, a servant (4); William Clasen, two daughters, one child (4); Jan Kipshaven , his wife, one daughter (3);  James Weedon, his wife, one daughter, one son, four servants (8);  Jon Rods, his wife, three sons, two daughters (7); John Brun, his wife, one partner, John Colleson, (3);  Jan Michiels, Antony Pieters, Abraham Pieters, Pieter Hansz (4); Peter Gronendick Antony Hansen, Herman Cornelissen, (3); Hendrick Drochstraeten (1) for a total of 47 souls.
Sheriff wiltbanck also gave numbers to the homes from 166 to 176. He also reported the five occupants of the ship Betfort of Capt. Martyn Cregier and two Crew of  Pieter  Alrich's  boat of New Castle, both anchored at Whorekill in the bay Delaware.

Saturday, February 2, 2013


Than boy from Montana, Mike Potter,  from Whitefish, Montana, on his big wheeled bike on a tour of the United States, by name Four Corners Tour, was at the Village of five Points Arenas Coffee shop Friday, the first of February, a cold day for here, in his shorts but with a wool watch cap. Somewhat appropriate I guess. See his blog a  He is a talker for sure and has an interesting story, both coming and going,, talks  my language, "plain talk, easy understood".   An Army veteran  where he became assigned a 'journalist', because he was one of his group that could write a complete sentence. Any way he is here in Lewes, right now helping  Abrakas with a internet web site for his art business.  Hudson's are allowing him to stay in the Spaceship, at Eagle Crest.  So far he has been across the top of the country to Portland, Maine, down the coast through New Jersey and  tool  Cape-May Lewes Ferry ans Lewes. 
I have not made much way on his family genealogy but think his grandfather was Harry Potter, born in Montana and grandmother was. Allena, born in Missouri. Both were living in Whitefish in the 1930 census. Anyway, Joe Hudson and I enjoyed his visit at Arenas Friday morning.  Check out Whitefish on google maps. It has a railroad museum and the Great Northern Brewery.                                                           You may say this article is from the Arenas Express Press, a short lived news journal, which may come in play in the future.