Thursday, November 13, 2008

The End of Old Gilboa

Old Gilboa, settled in 1838, became a major hub of trade in southern Schoharie County.

During the early twentieth century, Gilboa boasted four general stores, an ice-cream parlor, a blacksmith, two hotels, three churches, and a two-room schoolhouse.

However, by 1916, the area was chosen to be the site of a New York City reservoir.

In 1917, New York City gained control of the hamlet. Residents could stay in their houses for the time being.

Gilboa’s little newspaper, the Gilboa Monitor closed up shop on October 10, 1918. Workers flooded into the area to help construct the dam. Homes were built for these workers and stone quarries were opened up around the area to bring in needed materials.

As work progressed, a large fire destroyed eighteen of the buildings on-site, leaving 300 people homeless. However, this did not stop the construction and on October 20, 1927, water flowed over the dam.

After the reservoir and dam opened, the Board of Supervisors reported that water flow in the Schoharie Creek had been diminished, causing ecological damage to the area.

To this day, it is said that one can see the foundations of the old houses when the reservoir is low.

Reference: The Sloughter’s History of Schoharie County, Lester Hendrix, The Schoharie County Historical Society, 1994.

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Nice photo!!
Who took it??
David A.