Those old locks, while a bit interesting, are not going to attract much tourism. Hardly worth spending money on in my opinion. Out of curiosity, if the remains of the dam were removed, could small boats, canoes, and kayaks pass through there?
There is a passage on the Fort Gay side, if deed and constructed correctly, would allow for the passage of small watercraft without removal of the the rest of the dam structure. It is my understanding that the level of the river needs to be maintained above the locks due to the water intake for the water plant but I could be mistaken on that….
I have to disagree on the tourism attraction comments. I think with Riverwalks planned on both sides of the river and the historic locks and dam structures as the focal point, it would be a wonderful asset to both communities. Too many of our historic structures have already been demolished and with this being the first needle dam in the entire US, I think we need to be proud of that and highlight it….
This is an amazing story. Our history is deeply based in that river, both forks. Civil War, Hatfield McCoy Feud, transport of goods before ro or railro, and even some really good ghost stories. History forgotten is history lost.
She advertises this location as a historic site. She gets lo of money!!!
Now tell me who the real scavenger is????!!!??? He has no proof of any such thing.
Mayor Hatfield has done more for this town than anyone has in many, many years. Now, she has worked hard to push the drug addicts and hookers out of town.
Kinda wondered that myself Citizen. What a world? Add a few nice trails and log benches.
Mountain bike route. Sunnyside could probably be purchased or donated for useable space and easily accessible for a start. Old coal mine could be historically discussed, ginseng, sassafras, different tree and plant identification along trails. Maybe build or have donated a replica of a Fort to promote historical facts.
I wish you luck and prayers for success in your and the towns ventures. This is how I heard it, I have confidence its true: A survey crew made the end of the day at Louisa. They were marking the boundary between Virginia and the new state of Kentucky; West Virginia did not yet exist.
It would however become a state in when WV remained in the Union. At Louisa the chief of the survey crew was contacted by some men, possibly would be KY politicians in waiting, or business men, with a vested interest? That night the crew took possession of some very fine Moonshine Whisky, and a healthy thrust thereof.
When morning came, a groggy and somewhat still not exactly sober crew started off up what they were told was, the Levisa fork. Up the Tug fork they went! Our lives nevertheless would have been a lot different one would imagine. How does that relate to this story you might ask? It all had to start at about the area of this story, where both forks come together, not far from those locks.
Yes that area has great historic impotence. Thanks for noticing Mayor Hatfield. Neat story. But, WV became a state on June 20, Not that 2 years change anything in this story. You are correct my friend, thank you.
I just assumed it was This is all interesting, but honestly…. My friend, our interest in history is often connected directly with age, not always but often.
What you like, and what an old fart like myself like might be totally different. I could see something like this on a vacation trip, you may not. That difference makes neither of us wrong, we simply have different interests.
There is also no reason this place could meet both our needs, outdoor activities and history could go hand and hand, do you agree with that to some degree? Spot on my friend. Someone who lives there may not see anything special about the locks, while someone from elsewhere may find them fascinating!
May God bless you Dave, I wish you another 50 years or more.
You all make good points. Maybe a pier would be a nice addition just below the locks. It would give a better view and make a great place to fish from.
We sure could benefit from a lot less KAG! I like the pier idea. Perhaps we could through KAG off it. Charles thanks you. I have been over every inch of the locks both sides and the middle pier inside the middle which was a wild adventure.
To this day I still see something different. You are quite welcome my friend. Things were once built to last, they are no more. Do you know how many locks were on the Big Sandy over the years? Seems there would have been more than one, especially in the steamboat days in our history. I would imagine there were more on both rivers.
There were 2 steamboats that sank in the Levisa fork Dave, one at Paintsville and the other at Prestonsburg. They either had more locks or they traveled when the water was up?
All the shipped goods came from Ashland, and before the railroad aroundgoods came to our area by boat, and things were shipped out too. I think they used push boats farther up the river. The Big Sandy has a long history my friend. I would love to hear any stories you have to tell Dave. The true value of this dam is the potential electricity that could be generated if a utility or private n. Placed before the sets of concrete drums on ft gay side it could generate enough power for ft gay and Louisa.
Also if boat lift was placed in the old lock after it was cleaned out you could allow small boat and kayak canoe Traffic to use upper and lower big sandy.
When river was at high flood stage you just raise paddle wheels and generator up on the vertical pillons. Joe that is an excellent plan, with one huge drawback!
The Federal Government owns all streams lakes rivers etc. I have a good creek running through my property and had a similar idea I just wanted to generate my own electricity.
The U. Corp of Engineers put a screeching stop to my plans! I told their rep that I owned the creek, and he told me I owned the dry ground on each side, but not the creek!
He even said if I built a pond at my own expense, the water in it would still belong to the Federal Government. Even if said pond was fed by a 4 inch branch, or was rain fed it was theirs, unless the water dried up, then I would own the mud!