A small step forward in the Fire Tower Project

While the novel coronavirus pandemic caused the Friends of Bramley Mountain Fire Tower to scale back our fundraising efforts on the project, we have continued to take important steps to move the project forward, where practical.

–We submitted our application to become a 501(c)3 organization back in June and are awaiting approval from the IRS.

–On August 25th we performed an inventory and inspection of the fire tower components to help us to determine the total cost of reconstruction, which will then allow us to begin to apply for grants and do other fundraising when the time for that is right.

It was so wonderful getting to meet and talk to Pete Clark, the man who saved the tower in 1970, and his grandson Kyle who is taking this 5th generation family farm to new heights with the opening of their creamery.

It was a big job, moving, sorting, counting and inspecting all the hundreds of pieces of the tower but thanks to Friends of Bramley Mountain Fire Tower volunteers, Forest Fire Lookout Association volunteers, Davana LLC (fire tower restorers) and the Clark family (owners of the tower), we got it done before severe thunderstorms rolled in.

Because of the care the Clark family took in taking the tower down, moving it and storing it, the parts were all accounted for and were generally in excellent condition. A few components had pack rust on them and will have to be replaced – a result of too tight crimping during the manufacturing process that did not allow the hot dipping material to penetrate and protect the metal. More than 90% of the parts were accounted for and in excellent condition!

Thank you to Laurie, Rick, Bob, John, Wendell, Jim, Bill, Tom, Dave, Chris, Tom C and Kyle for all the hard work!

roof panels
sides from the fire tower cab
The original alidade from the fire tower. This device contained a map which was turned to sight smoke from a distant fire, helping to determine the location of fires.
component marked as railing for the 4th landing
The staircases. Photo courtesy of FFLA
Sorting like pieces with like pieces. Photo courtesy of FFLA
The window frames from the cab. Photo courtesy of FFLA
Looking through the leg components. Photo courtesy of FFLA

6 Replies to “A small step forward in the Fire Tower Project”

  1. Congratulations to all of your hard work in getting the Bramley fire tower back on its old site. My wife and I bought the old Hoag Farm at the bottom of Genn Burnie Rd. & Co. Rt. 18 in 1974 and had no idea there was a fire tower on the mountain. In 1997 I was asked to write a book on the fire towers of the Catskills and was able to do research on the Bramley fire tower. I also knew the Clarks because I had Tom in my reading class at DA and started a group to raise money to retore the tower on Bramley MT. Laurie Rankin was one of the members. One fund raising event was a square dance in Bovina. But we were unable to get permission to use the land and eventually I moved to CT. in 2005. I wound up writing three books on fire towers: the Catskills and the Southern & Northern Adirondack fire towers. I am now finishing my third book on the Civilian Conservation Corps camps: The Adirondack, Connecticut and Rhode Island. Many of these CCC camps built fire towers. When the virus threat abates I will be happy to give fund raising talks. Keep up your great project. Marty Podskoch http://www.htps://martinpodskoch.com

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