Archive for the ‘architecture’ Category

Prominent Local Conservationist Cited for River Dumping

June 19, 2011

The Hartford Courant reports (June 15) that Richard Sweet, a past president of the Middlesex Land Trust, was cited on May 9 by CT DEP, on a complaint by Boston Road resident Al Maine, for illegal dumping of construction debris into the Coginchaug River here in Middletown. Mr. Sweet owns the Savage Arms factory site at 465 Middlefield St where the alleged dumping occurred, and another site on the same street occupied by an auto body company. He also is the steward of a 20 acre site nearby owned by Middlesex Land Trust along the Coginchaug River off of Forest St.

Also according to Hartford Courant, Richard Sweet describes the charges against him as “absolutely ridiculous”; that the debris stored on his property was swept into the Coginchaug River by the Spring freshet. The source of the debris according to news accounts is another building owned by Mr. Sweet in the city’s North End which collapsed under the weight of snow last winter; the wreckage was subsequently hauled to the Savage Arms site. Mr. Sweet has not responded to the complaint; the 30 day period for doing so expired on June 9. In response to questions Sweet said the lumber was cleaned up and “There’s no story here, It’s over.”

The Jonah Center for Earth and Art, an important watchdog and steward of the Coginchaug River, is monitoring the situation according to Executive Director John Hall.


In the photo map above we see the Coginchaug River as a dark ribbon winding from lower right to upper right. At top (green arrow) is the property at 398 Boston Road where some of the debris washed ashore according to owner Al Maine. The red marker near the bottom is the location of the Savage Arms property on Middlefield Street upriver from the Boston Road property. Directly below that red marker is where the debris must have entered the river as this area is just below the Savage Mill Dam slightly to the right.

Savage Revolving Fire Arms Company (c 1860)

This is the historic building at 465 Middlefield Street owned by Richard Sweet where the river dumping allegedly ocurred.

This close up shows demolition debris sticking out of the river bank at Richard Sweet's property, 465 Middlefield Road. It does not appear that this situation occurred accidentally or overnight. Credit John Hall

Finally there is this view of the Coginchaug River as it cascades over the Savage Mill Dam just behind the property above. The falling water here provided the motive power for the factory in the mid 19th century.

Savage Mill Dam

Advertisements

Middletown Hard Hit by Snow: Roofs and Buildings Collapse

February 6, 2011

Photobucket

John Brush Photo

Darrell Lucas Video (Feb 2, 2011)

Reposted from Middletown Patch:

“Mike DiPiro clearly seemed to feel he was the luckiest man alive.

DiPiro co-owns an accounting firm, Guilmartin, DiPiro & Sokolowski, at 505 Main St. He was on the second floor when he heard something crack on the floor above. He and an employee, Chris Conley, went up to investigate.

The century-old brick building, a former school, had a gym on the third floor. DiPino and Conley got there just in time to see 2-foot thick ceiling beams bending and cracking. “I said ‘Chris! Run!’ and we grabbed our jackets and ran in front of Luce where we called 911.”

DiPiro and Conley were the only ones in the building. At around 10 a.m., as they watched firefighters string caution tape along the front of the building, they heard another crack. The third floor crumpled into a cloud of brownish dust.

“A fire guy said ‘Run!’ and we ran; we were lucky we didn’t get hit by bricks.” A fireman’s helmet fell off and was crushed in the rubble…”

Photobucket

Photobucket

The 120 year old structure was solidly built; some details of the construction including the two foot thick ceiling beams can be seen in the above photos.

John Brush Photos

Samuel Wadsworth Russell House (1828)

May 9, 2010


Samuel Wadsworth Russell House (1828)

Originally uploaded by Steadyjohn

Samuel Wadsworth Russell House (1828)

High Street, corner Washington Street; Middletown, Connecticut. May 7, 2010.

This Greek Revival masterpiece was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1970 and was designated a National Historic Landmark in 2001. This house is frequently cited as one of the premier examples of Greek Revival Architecture in the Northeast. The house remained in the Russell family for five generations and was finally deeded to Wesleyan University in 1937.

Samuel Russell (1789-1862) became fabulously wealthy in the China trade in the early 19th century. He smuggled Turkish and Bengal opium into Canton and brought back fine porcelain, silk, and tea to Europe and the United States. In 1828 when his house was built Russell was in Canton, and his friend Samuel D. Hubbard worked with Mrs. Russell to supervise the building of the house. In 1831 Russell returned to Middletown and his new home where he resided until his death in 1862.

Source 1: Historic Buildings of Connecticut

Source 2: Wikipedia

Additional Photos from the site:

Iron Gate and Shadows

Samuel Russell House (1828)

Some Recent Photos From Around Middletown CT

February 14, 2010

First Year Hawk
First year hawk, most likely Red Tail, seen Coginchaug River vicinity

Wetmore-Starr House (1752)
The Wetmore-Starr House (1752) Washington St

Kid City Children's Museum
The Kid City Childrens Museum; Washington Street

Little House in the Graveyard
Graveyard scene; Vine Street

Wesleyan U. College Row fm High Street
College Row Panorama; High Street

Note: You may click on the photos for more information and image sizes; you will be redirected to my Flickr page.

Recent Middletown CT Photographs

February 23, 2009

Seen lately around the city:

(mouse over for titles, click for full size and description)

Middletown Alms House (sign) R

Middletown Alms House (1814) R

Middletown Alms House (1814) R

Middletown CT Alms House (1814)
Indian Hill Cemetery Chapel, Middletown CT

Laurel Grove Rd, Middletown CT

Coginchaug River  (Winter)

The Arrigoni Bridge in Paint and Photo

January 25, 2009

The Charles J. Arrigoni Bridge crosses the Connecticut River connecting Middletown and Portland Connecticut.

Constructed from 1936 to 1938, when it opened in 1938 the Arrigoni Bridge was the most expensive bridge, costing $3.5 million. With two 600 feet (180 m) steel arches, the bridge is still the longest in the state. In 1938 it won the American Institute of Steel Construction’s first prize “Most Beautiful Steel Bridge” in the large bridge category.The bridge is somewhat of an icon and landmark in the area and is also a marker of where the water begins to freeze in the river (as south of this point the tides are able to bring enough salt water north to keep the water from freezing over.) It was named after the state legislator who promoted the project, Charles J. Arrigoni, and was designed by William G. Grove of the American Bridge Company and Leslie G. Sumner of the State Highway Department.

Source: Wikipedia

Bridge by Peter Waite (Acrylic on Panels)

Bridge by Peter Waite (Acrylic on Panels-2006)

New Britain (CT) Museum of American Art
h/t Ed McKeon, Middletown Eye

Steadyjohn Photos

PostcardMiddletownCTPortlandPassengerBridge1907.jpg
This is a postcard view of the Portland Passenger Bridge (1895) which was replaced by the Arrigoni Bridge.

Arrigoni Bridge from landfill summit (Middletown CT)

Arrigoni Bridge from landfill summit Middletown CT-(Steadyjohn Photo)

See Connecticut’s Historic Steel Truss Bridges

See Connecticut Roads

Middletown Photos Added

January 4, 2009

Sufferin' Cats

“Sufferin’ Cats”

We have added lots of Middletown photographs to these pages; read more….

Reporting From Seattle….

September 20, 2008

I am visiting with my daughter in Seattle for a week or so; thought I’d post a few photographs. Seattle is a very interesting city. The climate here is quite temperate and the garden and plantings are lush. Every sidewalk and roadway is lined with vines, hedges, roses, and trees of all sorts.


Interesting sidewalk planting!


This 1906 church being converted to condos while preserving the exterior including stained glass dome.


Here is view of interior and dome.


A very young street musician!


Red sun, red hair, red wine!

A giant steps out at Seattle Art Museum!

The SAM giant

Lots of fish in Seattle!

Kiss a Fish!

Fish in your face!