Another historical marker is repainted and reset
Balcom’s Mills was busy place in Murray
MURRAY – A historical marker was installed in 1932 on Fancher Road, a mile north of the Erie Canal to highlight a mill in the hamlet.
That sign, 80 years later, was difficult to read and barely noticeable. On Monday a freshly painted marker was reattached on a pole that was moved a few feet away from the road so it would be less likely to be splattered with road salt.
Here is how the sign looked before the makeover. It was also positioned close to the road.
The sign notes that there was a mill built at the site in 1834 by Hiel Brockway and Abner Balcom. It was known as Balcom’s Mills. (The hamlet is known as Brockville.)
In 1837 a sawmill was added to the north end after a dam was erected in 1837.
Melissa Ierlan has been spearheading the effort to clean up and repaint many of the markers in the community. She worked on four in Clarendon, and last week completed one in Albion about the childhood home of Grace Bedell, the girl who wrote to Abraham Lincoln, asking him to grow a beard.
The Murray marker in next to George’s Fancher Road Service. Owner George Berg put in the concrete foundation and set the pole for the marker.
A group of residents, Ierlan, and Murray-Holley Historian Marsha DeFilipps gathered on Monday by the marker.
Ierlan has another marker to give a facelift. She picked up the one about the Elba mucklands on Route 98. This is just south of the Orleans County line in the Town of Elba. (The muck includes portions of Barre, Clarendon, Byron and Elba.)
She uses a wire brush to take off the paint and then repaints the signs in blue and gold.