Lansingburgh Historical Society Trustee Michael Barrett recently gave a lecture on Troy’s Tiffany Windows at the Van Schaick Island Country Club for LHS members and friends. While Troy has Tiffany windows in the public library and in multiple churches, the Tiffany windows in Lansingburgh seem to have been limited to Oakwood Cemetery, and perhaps in private homes.
Given that recent lecture, it’s worth sharing the below items about a Tiffany-designed fountain that was to have been erected in Troy just several years prior to Troy’s annexation of Lansingburgh. Seminary Park, where the fountain was to go, was an earlier name for what’s now called Sage Park.
To Be Placed In Seminary Park—To Commemorate the Centennial Celebration.
A tasteful design for a drinking fountain for Seminary park has been submitted by the Tiffany glass and decorating company of New York to the committee which has in charge the placing of the fountain in memory of the centennial celebration in 1889. This committee is a sub-committee of the committee of 100 which had the direction of the arrangements for the centennial observance, and comprises H. B. Dauchy, Lewis E. Gurley, W. E. Hagan, J. J. Tillinghast and E. F. Murray.
The design, which has been accepted, provides for a fountain of polished Scotch granite, a single column extending upward from the centre of the bowl, having a bronze cap and being surmounted by a glass ball arranged to contain an electric light. The height of the fountain will be fifteen feet. There will be four delivery tubes leading into the bowl, and cups will be supplied.
The fountain will cost from $1,200 to $1,400 and toward this amount a balance of $800 from the centennial fund is to be contributed. Some subscriptions have been received to defray the remainder of the expense, and in a short time the entire amount will be raised. The location of the fountain will be determined by the park commission.
Troy Daily Times. May 29, 1895: 3 col 5.
—In the suggestion of Superintendent Egerton of the city parks it is probable that the memorial fountain for Seminary park will be located in front of the entrance to the Sage memorial hall, and near the centre of the grounds.
“City Notes.” Troy Daily Times. May 31, 1895: 3 col 1.
Plans For Buildings at Beman Park—The Trees at Seminary Park—The Memorial Fountain.
The park commissioners held a short session yesterday afternoon, President Brennan and Messrs. Thomas and Squires being present. […]
The matter of placing the memorial fountain, which has been described, came up for discussion, although no formal statement regarding the matter has been made to the park commission by the centennial committee. It was stated that there was a difference of opinion as to where the fountain should be located, at the corner of First and Congress streets or in the centre of the park. The discussion was postponed until next Thursday, when the design will be submitted to the commissioners.
“City Notes.” Troy Daily Times. June 1, 1895: 3 col 3.
The Walks at Seminary Park—A Memorial Fountain’s Location—Conditional Contributions.
President Brennan and all the members of the park commission, except Mayor Molloy, attended the commissioners’ monthly meeting yesterday afternoon. […]
The design submitted by the Tiffany glass and decorating company of New York for the memorial drinking fountain for Seminary park was received, and there was also presented a communication stating that $700 toward the purchase of the fountain is in the possession of the committee in charge of the matter and $500 more is necessary for full payment. The communication was signed by George B. Warren, John I. Thompson and Francis H. Vail, each of whom agrees to give $25, providing the balance be raised to complete the fund. These gifts will be bestowed on the condition that the fountain be located at the corner of First and Congress streets, in the park, and be of the design presented.
On motion by Mr. Allen the subject of the location of the fountain was referred to the superintendent and committee on grounds, to confer with the committee of citizens and have power to locate the fountain.
Superintendent Egerton read specifications calling for 4,400 square feet of flagstone, thirteen receiving basins, draining basins and connecting sewer pipes and 800 cubic yards of surface soil all for Seminary Park. […]
Troy Daily Times. June 7, 1895: 3 col 3.
[…] The Proposed Fountain Not Considered Attractive—No More [?] to Conquer at Present.
All the members of the park commission were present yesterday afternoon at a brief session.
Bills amounting to $612 were audited, including one from J. H. Gadner for $157 for catch basins for Seminary park and one for $[?] for connections.
The weekly pay-rolls July 3 and Jily 10, $194 and $[?] were audited.
Superintendent Egerton said he had not considered the matter enough to warrant giving an official opinion, but judging from a picture of the proposed fountain he thought the fountain was not artistic and would not be an ornament to the centre of the park. He thought the park too small to contain much ornament of this character. The fountain was a straight shaft and gave no pretty water effect. If it were located at the corner of the park at Congress and Second streets, it might have better effect. It was said that the fountain was not purchased yet. The matter was referred to the committee on grounds.
An opinion was expressed that when the Seminary park improvements be completed—in three weeks—the work of the park commission would be ended. It was suggested that the Oakwood park be taken up, but it was found that there was not enough money to warrant completion of that park.
It was decided that when the improvements to Seminary park be completed the services of the workmen be tendered to the management of the seminary adjoining, that the grounds of that institution as planned might be placed in [?] condition, the seminary management to pay the expense.
Action in the matter of placing electric lights in the park was deferred until next week.
Troy Daily Times. July 12, 1895:; 3 col 5. [What appears to be a string runs across the microfilmed page and blocks some of the text.]
It was proposed at one time to use the remainder of the money in purchasing a fountain for Seminary park. A plan was obtained, but for various reasons it was decided to abandon this project.
“A Worthy Memorial.” Troy Daily Times. December 11, 1896: 2 col 1.
Lansingburgh had some fountains. Powers Park had one of some kind and at its southeast corner today, 110th St and 3rd Ave, there is a stone monument being used as a flower planter that may have once been a fountain. On it are the words “Presented to City of Troy by the Lansingburgh W. C. T. U. 1908”. Prior to annexation by Troy that organization had been discussing placing a public fountain in Lansingburgh, possibly by Rensselaer Park. Temperance advocate Ellen F. Bascom of Lansingburgh, also involved with the WCTU, paid for a fountain to the memory of her late husband Henry Clay Bascom (1844-1896) to be placed in Prospect Park – one featuring drinking accommodations for dogs, horses, and people, and which featured electric lights and a statue atop it. Presented in 1907, sometime prior to 1943 it had been so ill-cared for by the city that it was removed – one of a number of injustices that the park’s designer Garnet Douglass Baltimore found particularly regrettable.
A committee consisting of Mrs. Sarah Gaston, Mrs. H. E. Bartlett, Mrs. C. C. Smith and Miss F. M. Parks, members of the Lansingburgh Women’s Christian Temperance Union, will appear before the Water Commissioners to-night and confer with the commissioners relative to the placing of a public drinking fountain in the village. The organization proposes to construct a fountain that will be a handsome ornament to the village and will cost about $150. The work of putting in the foundation will also be defrayed by the organization. The location has not been determined, but it has been suggested and considered that the fountain be placed on Fifth avenue near Rensselaer park.
Troy Daily Times. December 3, 1896: 4 col 4.