[Front Side- Left Panel]Welcome to
Lock 2 Park
You may continue across Lock 2 to stay on the Champlain Trail to access:
·Old River Lock #4
·The Waterford Rural Cemetery
·The Northside Business District
·The Waterford Historical Museum and Cultural Center
If you turn left, you will pass the Side-Cut Locks and access:
·The Waterford Harbor Visitor's Center
·The Site of the Button Fire Engine works
·The Hudson and Mohawk Rivers
·Pebble's Island State Park and Visitor's Center.
[Front Side- Right Panel]
Side-Cut Locks EmptyA unique view of the Side-Cut Locks when drained of water in the winter time. The view is from below the steel pilings on the right and looks down the locks from the bed of the original Champlain Canal, down through three lock chambers, out to the Waterford Harbor area and into the Hudson River.
Side-Cut LocksThe originally built locks, seen here, were constructed during the canal enlargement era circa 1860 and were the first gateway to the Canal System. With the exception of the wooden doors and mechanisms used to open and close them, they remain the same as in 1860.
The original purpose of these locks was to allow boat traffic from the Hudson River into the Champlain Canal and back out from the Champlain Canal into the Hudson River. Today the Side-Cut Locks are used as a spillway for excess water to flow out into the Hudson River when Lock 2 on the Erie Barge Canal is being operated.
Some old time canallers referred to this area as "The Crossroads". A boat entering the top chamber of the lock and turning right it was headed north to Lake Champlain. A left turn would link with the original Erie Canal with the first two miles of its trip toward Lake Erie.
There were Side-Cut Locks at West Troy, now known as Watervliet, which were designed to accommodate west bound traffic. Any vessel that used the canal had to fit into these locks.
[Reverse Side- Left Panel]
Pictured here tying up along the towpath just north of the locks are two old canal tug boats, the Annex and the Almira. The Annex was the first tugboat to successfully engage in towing on the Champlain Canal. In the background note the Broad Street Bridge. This was a lift bridge to allow boat traffic to pass under and other traffic to pass over. Boat traffic had the right of way.
The W.C. Baxter docked on the other side near Ever's Coal Dock was the first tug boat that was specifically built to tow on the Old Champlain Canal. After the Annex became successful towing on the Old Champlain others followed along, but the Baxter was the only "new" tug to work the canal system.
Shown here, being steered under the lift bridge, is the Wonder, whose home port is New York City. Note the high arch bridge over the canal at Division Street. The mules pulling this boat are almost to the next bridge.
[Reverse Side- Right Panel]
By noting all the cargo carrying canal boats awaiting to enter the system, one gets a feel for the amount of activity here.
The Van Schoonhoven's operated a mule barn here and were allowed to charge $0.25 per boat to pull them through the locks. In this Picture barn boss Fred Bass oversees a locking.
The Van Dervoort Family owned and operated the tug Annex on the Old Champlain Canal. All family members lived on a houseboat, sometimes accommodating eleven people. Pictured here is the family home, the Rudder Grange, traveling through the lock. On board is mother Julia, daughter Beatrice and brother Elmer.
The last picture shows Engineer William Van Dervoort, in 1909, preparing the tug Annex for a trip through the Side-Cut Locks and up to Lake Champlain.