Another signal from my childhood has made its way to the retirement home in December 2019 with a few of the other ones I already have from where I grew up.
Another Crouse Hinds 4 way signal. Yeah, I have a few 4 ways, so what is one more? I remember this back as far as 1970 when we moved to the Village of New Hartford. It was at a corner of the school I went to. I get asked all the time “How do you remember it?” I can’t tell you. I just do. “How do you know it’s the same traffic light?” I just know it is, I tell people. I’ve got a trafficgraphic memory, remember?
Best old photo of the light that I have. It was on the corner of Oxford Rd, Sanger Ave and Daly Place in from of what was then called Oxford Road School. The photo is from the mid to late 1970’s I think. The light was green back then. Was run by a simple Crouse Hinds mechanical controller that cycled continuously 24/7 for at least 40 years until it was first replaced by an electronic controller in the early 2000’s and yet another new one around 2010 which runs the light that is there now..
Each day going to school for the 9 years I went there, I’d pass this light in the morning on the way to school and once again on the way home. Most of those years were walking past it and probably the last year of school way waiting in my car for it to change. There was a crossing guard there also daily who stood in the middle of the road when the light turned to help us cross.
This spiffy new signal replaced the old one in 2014. It’s plastic so I dont care for it.
The original story on this light was that a fellow collector found out the Village of New Hartford kept all their old signals when they were replaced in 2014. Amazingly they didn’t smash them and pitch them into a dumpster or scrap them like other municipalities do. He got this light, told me they had others. I went, saw them and loaded them up in my car of course. The one from Oxford Rd and Sherman Street which was a twin to this one which is hanging under my chair in the basement as I type this, and the Genesee Street signals that now are hanging up in my backyard. There was another on the corner where my house was that i’m unsure of where that is. I think they removed 2 sections and made it into a beacon that is there now. One more hangs down the street from where I lived. An old Sargent Sowell that has seen better days.
So this signal makes 22 the number of 4 way signals I have (I think). I’ve always liked 4 ways since that was the signal of choice around here. There aren’t too many left and the ones that remain, their days are probably numbered. Latches dont open anymore. 50+ years of Central New York weather has taken their toll on the bodies. However, some places like Rome, NY actually take them down, refurbish the insides, though with LEDs vs original reflectors and glass lenses, paint the outsides and they happily continue to guard over their intersections.
So this will be yet another one that needs to be rewired and hung up somewhere. All the glass and reflectors were saved by the village and are back in this light. Just some wiring needs to be done and it will be back to the way it was that I remember. Another one saved from either being scrapped eventually or just trashed. Nothing beats a old time signal for me.
Thanks for reading!
Hi Tony, this is Steve Thompson from Albany New York.
My backyard span wire fell down last summer due to one of the trees rotting out and falling over. I’m contemplating what I’m going to use to put up a new span wire. I know you use the six by sixes I believe. I was either going to possibly do that or used telephone poles or a metal post that I can have made up for me which is about 14 feet high as I want the bottom of the light to be at least 8 feet off the ground. I wanna know if you ever used concrete as a base and then bolting a pole into that, if so how deep do you make the holes and what kind of concrete should I use? Any suggestions or ideas are definitely welcome! Thanks!