The Essex Community Historical Society
PO Box 8388 Essex, Vermont 05451
The Essex Community Historical Society wants to tell you about a special project the ECHS Board is undertaking
and to ask for your help.
As many of you know, ECHS used to open the Tower located at Fort Ethan Allen twice a year to
the public. Each time the tower was open, around 100 adults and children walked up the 103
stairs to see the view of the Champlain Valley from the top. Board members told the story of the
Tower - the first structure built at the Fort in 1893 - and the history of the Fort from its
beginning as a United States Calvary post to its ending as a United States Air Force base.
However, the 100-plus-year-o1d stairs have deteriorated to the point where it is no longer safe to
climb them, and ECHS is unable to open the Tower to the public. The ECHS Board wants to preserve a very important part of the Town of Essex's history and to pass on the history of the Tower and the Fort for generations to come.
In keeping with our mission to preserve Essex history, we have decided to embark on our largest historic
preservation project since our founding 25 years ago - the 'Save the Tower Campaign' to raise the
$325,000 needed to repair and restore the stairs, roof, and masonry of the Tower.
The Save the Tower Campaign will include soliciting donations of money and in-kind
goods and services and submitting applications for historic preservation grants. Most of the
historic preservation grants require a 50/50 match and many have a stipulation that work needs to
be started, and sometimes completed, within a year of receiving the grant funding. Therefore, it
is imperative to have our 50 percent available before submitting the application. Also, having
local monies available at the time of the grant application shows local support which is
sometimes asked about by granting agencies.
We are planning a public kick off of the Campaign in May at the Tower. At that time, we
would like to show advance support of ECHS membership for the project. Enclosed is a
and we hope you feel preserving the Tower is as important as we do - remember
the amount of your donation is not as important as your monetary support in any amount.
Volunteer help is also needed and there is a place on the form for you to include your willingness
to do so.
We will let you know the day of the May kick off, here on this website when it has been scheduled, and either via
the Echo or another mailing. We hope to see you there, and we thank you for any support you
can give ECHS for the Save the Tower Campaign.
Below are links to historical information about the Water Tower.
These links will open in a new Tab Window.
If you have any questions, please contact the ECHS President, Eva Clough
, or ECHS Treasurer, Ann Gray
The Water Tower
Fort Ethan Allen Museum
Pictures of The Water Tower
At the Town Meeting promoting the Save The Tower campaign
October 16th - Fundraising at the Texas Roadhouse in Williston - Click Here - Print and bring this Flyer to enjoy a legendary meal and the Texas Roadhouse will donate 10 % of the cost of your meal to ECHS for the Water Tower restoration at Fort Ethan Allen in Essex.
The webpage was updated on Sept. 12, 2017.