Liberty Pole stands next to Cobblestone Museum

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 1 October 2013 at 12:00 am

Photos by Tom Rivers

GAINES – They were popular during the Revolutionary War, tall wooden poles typically put up in town squares. They were painted red on top, a sign of defiance against British rule.

In 1982, the people of Gaines and the Cobblestone Society Museum erected a replica Liberty Pole next to Farmer’s Hall on Route 98, just south of Route 104.

I’ve noticed the pole before, but I didn’t know what it symbolized until Saturday, when I stopped by the museum for its “Traders of the Lost Arts” event. A lady demonstrating flax processing clued me in on Liberty Poles. She said they were popular in New England. There aren’t too many around anymore.

The Liberty Pole in Gaines includes a carving of a bald eagle. The pole went up in 1982, “The Year of the Eagle,” according to a marker by the pole.