From the President
By David G. Barber
Recently I attended a tour by the
Pennsylvania Canal Society of the lower end of the
A few years ago, I began to
systematically explore the canal after having seen some isolated points in
earlier visits. At that time, the canal had recently been rewatered throughout
its length except for the southern most mile and was the second most visited
state park in
On the tour we
got to see the filled in lower mile, for which there is much pressure to dig it
out. There are many who believe that doing so would help the viability of the
Of major interest were the reports of contracts being let and bid for repair of the flood damage to the northern end of the canal. The repairs include measures to reduce the damage of future floods. Also, other measures are being considered to replace some stop gates and provide other measures allow flood waters to leave the canal without damaging it. There is even one project underway to improve the canal around Lock 5, which was planned just before the flooding and then put on hold.
Once these projects are completed, probably in 2009, the supporters of the canal can return to the long range task of making the canal more accurately reflect its claim of being the “only intact towpath era canal.” With hard work, one day, we may even able to navigate this canal in real boats.
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