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Onondaga Creekwalk users can view region's history through new signs, videos

Ellen Abbott/WRVO News
A segment of the Onondaga Creekwalk in Syracuse

New signs along the Onondaga Creekwalk in Syracuse offer a glimpse into central New York’s history to walkers, bikers and joggers as they pass by. 

Onondaga Historical Association curator Dennis Connors helped pull together the stories that are told through the signage and videos that can be accessed through a QR code.

“There’s one on the salt industry,” Connors says. “The one out at Onondaga Lake talks about the founding of the Confederacy and the significance of the lake to the Haudenosaunee people. We have one down here at National Grid, the Niagara-Mohawk building, that talks about its architecture. Ones that talk about the railroad history you encounter along the way.”  

The creekwalk starts at the armory in Armory Square, which housed a mounted calvary that came to be known as Syracuse Rough Riders.

The stable is at the west end of the building, where the small windows mark former horse stalls, and the upper windows show where the hay was loaded in the loft.

Credit Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

It then proceeds to Onondaga Lake, the sacred site where the Haudenashonees created a lasting peace among warring nations. The people signified this union by uprooting a great white pine tree, and throwing their weapons of war in the hole.

Onondaga Historical Association executive director Gregg Tripoli says these plaques and accompanying videos add to the creek walk experience.

"It adds depth and value to the creekwalk,” Tripoli says. “It gives people something to do. It gives them something to learn along the way, and they can do it either through the signage, or the QR codes that brings them to a film.”

Ellen produces news reports and features related to events that occur in the greater Syracuse area and throughout Onondaga County. Her reports are heard regularly in regional updates in Morning Edition and All Things Considered.