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Theodore Burr’s Two Early 19th Century Schenectady-Scotia Bridges: New Evidence with Ron Knapp

March 20 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm



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This virtual program is part of our Winter Speaker Series, and will be presented on Zoom. A Zoom link will be emailed to all SCHS members before the program.

In a richly illustrated presentation, author Ron Knapp will discuss his new book, “Theodore Burr and the Bridging of Early America.” In this important work on covered bridges, Knapp explores Burr’s local creations: the Schenectady-Scotia bridges. Knapp will delve into a good deal of new information about Burr’s two local bridges, filling in gaps in Schenectady history. During his lifetime, Burr claimed to have built forty-five bridges — these however were not like the ordinary covered bridges commonly seen today that are identified with his patent, but include some of the most challenging and superlative bridges in American history. But, despite Burr’s herculean efforts, part of his legacy sadly includes an obscure and ignominious demise in 1822 at the age of 51, possibly by then penniless and without even an obituary lauding his work. He was buried in an unknown grave. Burr deserved better. Knapp’s work rectifies this.

Ron Knapp is the author, editor, or contributor of more than 20 books. He taught from 1968 through 2001 in the Department of Geography and Asian Studies Program at the State University of New York, New Paltz, where he holds the rank of SUNY Distinguished Professor Emeritus. Knapp enjoys hiking and ‘reading the landscape,’ and since 1987, he has served on the Board of of Mohonk Preserve, New York’s largest not-for-profit nature preserve.


March 20
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm