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1967Re: Fonda Photos

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  • Glenn Williams
    Nov 15, 2000
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      Here's some more information on the Fonda pictures posted in the
      Files section. Most of the references to owners or occupants are
      from the '50s and '60s. By the way, 2000 was the 150th anniversary
      of Fonda's founding.

      # 1: From the left, NYC Tracks 2 and 1, with blank roadbed where
      Track 3 was removed. Track 4 and the yard track are in the center,
      with the FJ&G main to the right of the poles. At about this
      location, a crossover went from the yard track to Track 4, allowing
      NYC locals to regain the main. This crossover was later relocated
      closer to the Fonda yard (see picture #34), after SS 16 was closed.
      The yard track continued west for some distance, to Spencer's Coal
      yard, and was used at that location for dormitory cars during the
      construction of the FE (Fonda East) and FW (Fonda West) interlockings
      in the early '50s.

      # 2: The footings shown were for manually controlling the crossover
      mentioned above from the SS 16 tower just behind the photographer.
      When SS 16 was moved to the new 2nd story of the Fonda depot, the
      crossover was controlled electrically from there.

      # 3: From the right of the corrugated enginehouse, the two low
      buildings were for the Socony Vacuum (later Socony Mobil and then
      just Mobil) plant. The white building at the right is rear of the
      Fonda Post Office, built in the early 60's.

      # 5: The Fonda P.O. is at the left, with Sarris' Restaurant at the
      right, with the turntable site between. The P.O. is on the site of
      the building shown in our Files as ICC picture #2.

      # 6: From the left - the Central Garage, for years a Chevy dealer-
      ship, was white in colour; it was also a Gulf station. Next, a
      residence turned into a movie theatre (in the late '40s), with a
      Grange Hall on the 2nd floor; subsequently one of Johnny Morford's
      antique dealerships. Next, mansard-roofed rooming house. Last,
      Fonda Methodist Church.

      # 7: Actually, there are three buildings here: Sarris' Restaurant
      on the left, the Shell garage in the middle, and the Colonial
      Restaurant on the right.

      # 8: The market is on the site of the NYC's Fonda depot. For an
      earlier picture of this location, see
      Foundation of old SS 16 is in foreground.

      # 9: Originally the site of the Hotel Roy, later the Colonial
      Restaurant, whose entrance was on the Main Street side. The switch
      is where the FJ&G main leaves the yard track. It was a manual switch
      not controlled by SS 16.

      # 10: From left to right - Central National Bank. The Wagon Wheel,
      a soda fountain and newsstand, with a tailor shop over. The hotel
      (whose name escapes me) had awnings on the 2nd and 3rd floors; a cab
      company later shared the ground floor with the bar and grill. The
      one-story building is the Frothingham Free Library, originally in a
      taller building destroyed by fire; one of the two buildings
      originally here was, I believe, Wyman's Drug Store. The car in the
      foreground is where the west leg of the Fonda's line wye ended.

      # 11: From left to right in the background - the Corning Davis
      Store, whose awning/canopy was not original. See #5, above, for
      another view. The Stewart's is located on the site of a small lot
      between the Davis building and of a large three-story building (now
      the Stewart's parking lot). For years it housed a State Police
      substation, the Fonda Post Office, and other businesses I cannot now
      recall. See page 110 (top) of Randy Decker's book.

      # 14: The building on the left was the Mays Hotel, with a restaurant
      on the ground floor. The entrance was much different than that shown.

      # 17: This is the rear of one of several business buildings between
      the NYC property and the Agway (nee GLF) buildings. These buildings,
      including the Agway, were demolished early in '98 and the newest
      Fonda P.O. erected on the site.

      # 18: The trailer-on-flat-car at the right is on the siding which
      served the GLF.

      # 19: See #17.

      # 23: The gas station behind and to the left of the pickup truck was
      originally the site of the Hands' Lunch diner.

      # 25: Just behind the Mohawk Valley Democrat building, at the orange
      sign, was a smallish structure for the grade crossing guard, there
      because of the nearby school.

      # 28: The houses were in various stages of disrepair as you go back
      in time.

      # 32: The red building originally had a store at street level. The
      Zion Episcopal Church across the street has been unused since the
      early '30s. Freight depot actually was at right edge of picture.

      # 34: Gas station and retaining wall were new in the '60s, after the
      freight depot burned. The building was leased by the NYC to a
      private party, who filled it with wax-covered containers. The fire
      took down the Mohawk Division wires on adjacent poles, putting it in
      a bit of a fix for a while. See Gino's web site for a partial
      picture of the site.

      While I have pictures squirreled away for a lot of this, my memory
      may be faulty. Let me know of any errors and omissions offline and
      I'll repost this list.

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