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historic preservation

HLOM hosting workshop, focuses on museum preservation methods

By Press Release

Press Release:

Come to the Holland Land Office Museum to see the first in a series of mini-exhibits focusing on materials and objects of our collection that have suffered from neglect and time. The Decomposing Past series will begin with textiles from Tuesday, Oct. 3 until Tuesday, Oct. 31. 

The objective of this multipart exhibit series is to bring awareness to the importance of museum work and the preservation of the physical past. The first installment focuses on textiles and clothing across 180 years (1750-1930)!

Admission to the exhibit is included in regular museum admission. Along with the exhibit, our curator will be hosting a textile workshop on Oct. 21, discussing various preservation methods and various items housed in the HLOM Clothing Collection!

Join us at the Holland Land Office Museum for the first in our new series of "Decomposing Past" Workshops. The first will be on Saturday, Oct. 21 at 1 p.m.

This workshop will focus on antique textiles, and discuss various preservation methods of items within the museum collection. Our Curator Tyler Angora will share these methods in the hope that you can use them and understand the textile conservation practices on your own pieces. 

Admission is $10 or $5 for museum members. This series of workshops is in conjunction with The Decomposing Past mini-exhibits at the museum.

Learn how you can benefit from Historic Tax Credits at workshop Tuesday night

By Billie Owens

Press release:

Learn how you can benefit from Historic Tax Credits and other funding sources to rehab your home, business or historic barn at a free workshop at GO ART! on Tuesday, March 24.

The presentation will begin at 6 p.m. at Seymour Place, 201 E. Main St. in Downtown Batavia. It is hosted by the Landmark Society of Genesee County in conjunction with Buffalo-based Preservation Studio.

The business is a full-service historic building rehabilitation consultant. They are able to assist with the Historic Credit Application Process, help registering a historic property or district, adaptive re-uses, project management, building surveys, and the creation of financial proformas. They are currently working with the Village of Le Roy to create a designated historic district downtown.

Historic preservation is an important tool which can help strengthen our community through: closing the gap in financing that often restricts redeveloping local businesses (economic development); promoting sustainable living; and expressing your community's heritage and civic pride.

Tuesday's presentation is also in association with the Batavia Business Improvement District and SUNY GCC's The BEST Center, and the county planning department.

For more information or to RSVP, please contact Derik Kane, Genesee County Planning Department. Phone 815-7901 or e-mail

Ghost Ships of Lake Ontario at Woodward Memorial Library

By Trisha Riggi

Wednesday, August 17th from 7-8:30 pm. Dressed as a period sailor, Jim Fischer, historian, marine consultant and storyteller will tell the unique story of The Hamilton and Scourge. Two merchant ships which were pressed into service for the American Navy just prior to the War of 1812. Both vessels foundered in Lake Ontario during a sudden squall on August 8, 1813, and still lie perfectly preserved at the bottom of Lake Ontario off Canadian Shores.

Event Date and Time

Batavia couple slowly, lovingly restoring one of city's grand old mansions

By Howard B. Owens

Even with its "distressed" facade (as antique collectors might put it), the Doty Mansion at the corner of Jackson and Highland Park in Batavia is an imposing structure.

The house was built in 1865 and is now split into four apartments, but its splendor and grandeur are apparent even as the white-washed bricks show through and some of the gables hang precariously from the eves.

Tim and Lisa Stoddard bought the mansion, built over a 10-year span by one of Batavia's early banking magnates, in 2003 and have since invested more than $100,000 into restoring the building.

And the work is still not done. Their are the gables to repair, and porch rails to replace and other improvements to be made, but Tim Stoddard spoke of the house glowingly after I ran into him this evening outside the residence.

"We love the house even though we'll never live in it," Stoddard said. "It's a beautiful house and we love the history of it. It's been a pleasure to own and a pleasure to work on."

Stoddard owns American Roofing, and he and Lisa are also restoring the Victorian-era home they currently live in.

He said he considered historic preservation of these grand old homes important and is sorry to see so many once great homes fall into disrepair.

The Doty Mansion, built by one of Batavia's original bankers, Leonidas Doty, has been a four-unit apartment complex for 60 years, and some of that time housed Section 8 tenants, Stoddard said, but he's slowly bringing back to its former glory.

The home still retains two 100-year-old-plus chandeliers as well as two grand marble fire places.

"I wish I could show you inside," Stoddard said at least three times while we walked around the house.

We all may get our chance for a partial tour soon -- an apartment in the house -- which Tim describes as larger than some single-family homes -- will be available for rent soon and the Stoddards plan to make tours available when its vacant.

UPDATE: I found this historical article about Mr. Doty via Google Books:

In 1856 Mr. Doty engaged in banking in Attica being associated with the celebrated financier and railroad magnate Dean Richmond. In 1860 Mr Doty bought out Mr. Richmond's interest and removed the bank to Batavia Genesee County. As a banker Mr. Doty was distinguished by courtesy accessibility and a disposition to afford all possible aid to legitimate enterprises. He held a place in the front rank of those safe yet progressive bankers who are regarded as pillars of strength in times of financial stress. Toward the close of his life he admitted to partnership Mr. John H Ward. Mr Doty was one of the founders of the First National Bank of Batavia for many years held a controlling interest in it which he sold in 1880. In 1876 Mr Doty came to Buffalo where he purchased a handsome residence on Delaware avenue.

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