More about the dam busting.

The Canal Authority recently issued a pamphlet outlining their project to clear up a few embankments and dams along sections of the canal.

You can read a copy here

However, on page 15 it looks like they have used the wrong photo as the one displayed shows an embankment failure, and as this photo shows, the bottom fell out of the canal, flooding the lower parts of Bushnell’s Basin.

basin floor collapse

You can read more about this here!

This is obviously not a dam or embankment breach, but the resulting flood damage was still the same.  The north side of the canal has an embankment overlooking Marsh Rd.

As I’ve researched this, I found some wonderful old photos which I’d like to share.

I particularly like the trains that shunted along the embankments and dams ferrying material. If you look closely, you can see these wagons tipped up to dump the loads of rubble and soil.

Fairport-1912b
Title: Construction scene, New York State Barge Canal [Fairport] [photograph]. Date: 1912-1918? Physical Details: 1 photograph : b&w ; 6 x 9 in. Collection: Perinton Municipal Historian collection Summary: A construction train hauling dirt from the canal bed in the village of Fairport during the building of the New York State Barge Canal System. This project widened the already existing Erie Canal, which ran through the village. Image Number: tpm00189
FairportBridge-1913d
Title: Construction scene, Main Street Bridge [Fairport] [photograph]. Date: 1913 Physical Details: 1 photograph : b&w ; 4 x 6 in. Collection: Perinton Municipal Historian collection Summary: Several Fairport men inspecting the temporary wooden bridge used during the construction of the Main Street Bridge, which was conpleted in 1914. A train is visible in the canal bed in the lower right corner. It was used to haul dirt out of the bed during the widening of the Erie Canal. This enlargement of the canal, during the state’s construction of the Barge Canal System, necessitated the erection of the new, longer Main Street Bridge in Fairport. This view looks northwest. Notes: “Bridges 81”. Image Number: tpm00092
Here’s a steam shovel digging around the Lift Bridge.

FairportBridge-1913a
Title: Enlargement of Erie Canal [Fairport] [photograph]. Date: 1912-1914 Physical Details: 1 photograph : b&w ; 4 x 6 in. Collection: Perinton Municipal Historian collection Summary: Onlookers watch the process of enlarging the Erie Canal in the village of Fairport. A large piece of machinery works from the canal bed to widen the south bank. Notes: “Barge Canal Operations Fairport, N.Y.” Image Number: tpm00254
More general photos of interest around Fairport and the canal.

More about the canal mishaps.

Author: Mike Caswell

I live in Fairport, and my home is at The Oxbow section of The Erie Canal. I fish, have a pontoon boat and like messing in boats. (see www.mud-skipper.com). I'm retired and enjoy every day living here with my wife Carol and our two dogs.

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