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Thread: Jefferson Fire Tower - In the process of rebuilding

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    Jefferson Fire Tower - In the process of rebuilding

    I expect many folks have driven by the stone firetower (called Carters Tower) on the south side of RT2 on the east side of Jefferson (not far away from the Water Wheel restaurant). This was a private tower built by a "wealthy eccentric" who had a very extensive estate running from RT 2 all the way down to the Valley road at one point. Over the years the trees have grown up around it so I expect its views are limited but would be quite special if the trees were cut. With the exception of someone occasionally mowing around the base I have never seen other activity. A few months ago the door was stenciled No Trespassing. I drove by recently and the doors and windows were open with staging being put in place to allow what I think is roof rebuild. The tower has a wood shingled conical roof that was looking a bit worse for the wear.

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    Senior Member Hillwalker's Avatar
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    Thanks Peakbagger. I have driven past this many times over the years and always wondered about the tower's history. Do you have any idea when it was built?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hillwalker View Post
    Thanks Peakbagger. I have driven past this many times over the years and always wondered about the tower's history. Do you have any idea when it was built?
    Here is a link to some info
    http://www.cowhampshireblog.com/2007...carters-tower/

    I have seen additional history on the original owner. Its on the web somewhere but I must not be searching correctly. If I remember correctly the entire mountainside was fields all the way to Valley road. There is a class four road that cuts down from RT 2 to the Valley road that is gated and there is no longer a bridge over the Israel river so its a road to nowhere but expect it was part of the estate. Bois Mountain trail starts at the driveway of the main house on the north side of the road. The occupants don't seem to mind polite hikers headed up to the summit. There are on occasion large group events on weekends where the lot is full at the main house. When Hillary Clinton was campaigning the campaign had a fleet of white ford product vehicles, when Hillary was in Gorham for the fourth of July Kiddy parade, there were about 40 whites fords of various models parked there for a couple of days before that vanished soon after. I am always curious if the company still owns the main house but haven't gone to the trouble to check out the tax records.

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    Member Heather&Kali's Avatar
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    Very cool. I too have wondered about that tower upon passing it on the way to Waumbek. We have joked about stories we would make up about why someone would build a tower. I guess I always assumed there was a daughter involved.
    Everywhere is walking distance if you have the time.

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    Senior Member Hillwalker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heather&Kali View Post
    Very cool. I too have wondered about that tower upon passing it on the way to Waumbek. We have joked about stories we would make up about why someone would build a tower. I guess I always assumed there was a daughter involved.
    A daughter with long blond tresses and odd first name ?

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    There is some history regarding John Wingate Weeks on Mt. Prospect in Lancaster and Mr. Carter being friends. Weeks as a Navy man was interested in semaphore and used to signal with his friend in Jefferson as an experiment in communication. The stone tower now at what is Weeks State Park also served an original additional purpose as a water storage tower. Water pumped with a gasoline pump up from a well to be held high to pressurize plumbing at the adjacent summer lodge. Weeks' tower also had some recent renovations- so it's been welcoming to see the activity to restore the Carter tower.

    A co-worker of mine grew up for a period as a child of the caretaking family of the Carter Estate decades ago. A caretaker still lives there at the smaller house on Bois Mt. Rd. My friends family was allowed to use the main house last Christmas for family gathering, as the Carters still own the estate (may be under a corporate or non-profit umbrella). The family still uses it for gatherings or getaways, but does rent out to others from my understanding.

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    Senior Member Raven's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by peakbagger View Post
    I expect many folks have driven by the stone firetower (called Carters Tower) on the south side of RT2 on the east side of Jefferson (not far away from the Water Wheel restaurant). This was a private tower built by a "wealthy eccentric" who had a very extensive estate running from RT 2 all the way down to the Valley road at one point. Over the years the trees have grown up around it so I expect its views are limited but would be quite special if the trees were cut. With the exception of someone occasionally mowing around the base I have never seen other activity. A few months ago the door was stenciled No Trespassing. I drove by recently and the doors and windows were open with staging being put in place to allow what I think is roof rebuild. The tower has a wood shingled conical roof that was looking a bit worse for the wear.
    That's great to hear some good news. Glad it's not going to crumble. I've been curious about that tower for a long time. The old cottages across the road not far away are defying gravity right now.
    Humankind has not woven the web of life.
    We are but one thread within it.
    Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves.
    All things are bound together.
    All things connect.
    ~ Chief Seattle, 1854 ~

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