One of Liverpool’s most cherished landmarks, The Salt Museum, closes for the season on Oct. 8. Until then it remains open to the public free of charge from 1 to 6 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.
One reason the museum remains so dear to our hearts is that it vividly recreates the industry that turned the city of Syracuse into the Salt City, an industry that ultimately supplied the entire nation with salt from the Civil War era and up into the 1920s.
Located at Onondaga Lake Park, 106 Lake Drive, the Salt Museum allows visitors to experience an original boiling block where brine was turned into what was then considered one of the country’s most precious commodities. Tourists see the actual kettles, wooden barrels and other equipment that was used to produce tons of salt.
The website Roadsideamerica.com recommends it: “The museum still carries the faint fetid odor of a salt marsh on a breezeless summer day. The exhibits are housed in a building constructed from portions of some of the old salt warehouses. Plainly presented displays trace the history of salt extraction in Liverpool. The romance of ‘White Gold’ turns out to be pretty dull as no mining was involved; just boiling big kettles of Onondaga Lake brine.
“The museum centerpiece and best exhibit is of the boiling block — a floor with a dozen sunken kettles next to which are posed cardboard cutout men with big wooden ladles. ‘The task of the salt boiler was grim,’ reads accompanying text. ‘Injury or death could result from burns from a scalding splash of brine or a fall into the boiling kettle.’”
The museum’s gift shop is operated by the Friends of Historic Onondaga Lake.
Tours are available late April through June and September to mid-October from 9:30 to 11 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tour groups are limited to 30 students/adults per group at a cost of $50 per tour. Reservations may be made by calling (315) 453-6712.
An outdoor film screening of “Beneath the Surface, The Storied History of Onondaga Lake” will take place at 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 30, at Skä-noñh – Great Law of Peace Center (formerly Sainte Marie Among the Iroquois), on Onondaga Lake Parkway.
Written and directed by Mark Eischen with music by Tim Herron, the documentary covers the history of the lake and the remarkable impact it has had on the American way of life over the past six centuries.
The lake’s story runs from the birthplace of the Great Law of Peace and the Haudenosaunee Confederacy, to the production of the country’s largest supply of important commodities, to the turn-of-the-century Resort Era and the 1920s project that built Onondaga Lake Park, to the most polluted lake in America, to one of the largest Superfund Clean-up sites in history, to a tourist attraction and the center of economic, cultural, recreational, educational and natural development in our community.
The Sept. 30 screening will be outside, so bring your own chairs, blankets and snacks.
Tickets cost $20, or $15 for OHA members; (315) 428-1864; cnyhistory.org.
Contact the columnist at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mar 18, 2018