Working to return the fire tower to Bramley Mountain
$1,500 Donation Challenge met!
As we approach the $50,000 fundraising milestone, FOBMFT President Ann Roberti and her partner, Tom Miano, offered us a $1,500 challenge to push us over that goalpost and beyond. They will donate $1 for each $1 donated to FOBMFT, up to $1,500. That challenge has been met!
Our previous donation challenge of $5,000 from supporter Gale K. was quickly reached back in January. We hope this one is similarly successful!
Even though we met this challenge, we still have a long way to go to raise the approximately $200,000 needed to restore and return the tower. We still need your contribution! Help us raise the tower – you can even make a donation using your smartphone through Venmo, PayPal, ApplePay, GooglePay or your credit card (click Support the Project or Smartphone Donating above, or here!)
Or send a check to FOBMFT, PO Box 63, Delhi, NY 13753
Working to turn this….
Fire Tower History When one takes in the view of the Catskill forest from a fire tower in 2020, they see a heavily forested, lush, green and healthy landscape. That was not the case in the early 1900’s. At that time, the Catskill landscape consisted of farm buildings, homes and businesses that were built of wood and heated with wood. The logging business and the tanning industry were working in the forest, harvesting trees and bark on a daily basis. Communication systems were poor, with the telephone in its infancy. Transportation was still by foot, horse, and rail. Trains passed through the forests with coal sparks flying from their stacks and from the wheels on the rails. This scene was played out throughout New York State. read more.....
Bramley’s tower was closed at the end of 1970, and in 1975 the DEC sold the tower for $50 to a local dairy farmer, Pete Clark, of Delhi. Mr. Clark and his helpers took the tower down with great care, saving all parts and even coding many as to their placement. The Clarks hoped to put the tower up on a hill on their farm, but they were never able to accomplish this.
In 1997, a group of Delhi and Bovina residents formed the Bramley Mountain Fire Tower Club, in the hope of restoring the tower to Bramley Mountain. The group raised funds with the goal of purchasing the summit parcel and right-of-way on the old access road as the first steps in their project, but they were unable to come to an agreement with the parcel’s owner. In the end, the funds raised were donated instead to the restoration of the Mt. Utsayantha tower. read more ….
The Bramley Mountain Trail is one of the most popular hiking options in the western Catskills. It was designed and built by the Catskill Mountain Club, in partnership with the NYC Department of Environmental Protection. Located on a NYCDEP parcel in the Towns of Delhi and Bovina, it totals about 4 miles in length. The complete loop visits the 2817’ summit with its site of a former fire tower, a beautiful abandoned bluestone quarry, and the impressive cliffs and caves that lie between. read more ….
The Friends of Bramley Mountain Fire Tower
The newly formed Friends of the Bramley Mountain Fire Tower group held its first meeting on the evening of January 6th at the O’Connor Hospital in Delhi. The Friends were formed to organize the reconstruction of the fire tower that was decommissioned by the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation in 1970 and removed in 1975. With the formation of the Friends group, the effort to raise funds and complete the resurrection of the tower has officially begun.
Among those agreeing to serve on the Friends’ board of directors are Ann Roberti, who will serve as president. Ann shepherded the project through the approval stages with Rick Roberts, who will serve as Vice-President. They will be joined by Amy Beveridge, David DeForest, Wendell George, Don Harris, Jillienne LaFever, Laurie Rankin, John Sandman, Jeff Senterman and Doug Sluiter.
Check out this great Kaatscast podcast featuring Brett Barry doing an on-trail interview with FOBMFT board member Laurie Rankin. Besides talking about our project and its origins, Laurie gives a short history of New York State fire towers. Laurie is the daughter of Larry Bake who was the observer at the Balsam Lake Fire Tower, and …
The Friends of Bramley Mountain Fire Tower (Friends) is excited to announce an important contribution from Wayne Bank. Lewis J. Critelli, President and Chief Executive Officer of Wayne Bank, has committed $10,000 to a sponsorship of The Bramley Mountain Fire Tower Restoration Project. “Wayne Bank is proud to support this valuable project, as the Bramley …
We’re so happy to be one of the recipients of Delaware County’s Tourism Promotion and Development Grants. With these funds and the Musser Grant we received in February, we were able to contract for the engineering drawings necessary to move the project another step forward! Preliminary drawings have been received!
Click here to be added to the Friends of Bramley Mountain Fire Tower’s email list, to get more detailed news on the progress of the fire tower project and to learn about volunteer opportunities. Volunteers will be needed throughout the project, to assist with fundraising, to help sort the components of the tower for inspection, painting components, assistance during construction as well as work afterwards staffing the cabin for visitors.