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The Lehigh Canal

The Lehigh Canal
A Virtual Tour

Old print showing canal boats being loaded with anthracite coal at Mauch Chunk

 

Guard Lock #8 begins Section 8, the last section on the Lehigh Canal. This also begins the area that is known as the Hugh Moore Canal Park. The locks in this section are watered and some of the locks and gates are operational. A mule drawn, specially constructed canal boat (The Josuah White), built to transport passengers, plies this portion of the canal in the summmer months.

 

Entrance to Guard Lock 8, looking west, or upstream up the Lehigh River. The tree line on the right is actually the island which was utilized as a means of moving the towpath from the north bank of the river to the south bank.

 

This is a view of the flood gates which control the flow of water into the canal. This is also a bridge for the mules to cross to put them on the north side of the canal, which at this point is south of the river.

 

Archival photograph of the mechanical works for the flood gates at Glendon. The locktender's house can be seen in the background.

 

Archival photograph of a canal boat anchored below the flood gates at Glendon. The guardlock is in the immediate background (the doghouse is visible) and the locktender's house is in the far backgound. The locktender's house is now a museum located in Hugh Moore Park.

 

View of lower end of guard lock #8. The towpath crossed over to the river side of the guard lock on a bridge across the upper end of the lock. Lift for the lock was 1.0 feet

 

Rear view of the lock tender's house at guard lock #8. The photograph was taken from the towpath. Guard lock #8 and the canal is to the left and the Lehigh River is to the right.

 

The canal looking through guard lock 8 from atop the upper gates. Note the locktender's house and the towpath on the left.

 

View of the V' shaped upper gates of guard lock 8. The towpath crossed over the lock on a bridge across the upper end of the lock, from which this photograph was taken. Lift for the guard lock 8 was 1.0 feet

 

guardlock 8 looking through the lock from downstream.

 

Open lower gates of guard lock 8.

 

Lock gate gearing for guard lock 8. Normally, the gearing mechanism would be covered, both sides and top to protect the gears from the weather and giving it the appearance of a doghouse.

 

Another view of the "dog house" gearing for the lower gates of guard lock 8. Essential pieces are missing which would make it impossible to close these gates.

 

Final look at guard lock 8. This is a view from the lower end looking back through the lock from the towpath.

 

Archival photograph of guardlock 8 and the locktender's house. This photo taken in the 1960's and is part of the Library of Congress collection.

 

This photograph shows the original dam #8 which spanned the Lehigh River. This dam was structured to provide water to the final segment of the Lehigh Canal. The canal is shown on the south bank of the river and the boat seen on the canal in this shot is a dredge. The lock tender's house can be seen at the upper end of the towpath. Also, a trestle bridge can be seen (upper right), crossing the northern channel of the river to 'Island Park'. At one time, the island contained an amusement park and was connected to Easton by a trolley line. The trolley crossed the northern channel of the river using the trestle shown. This photograph was taken in 1920. It is recommended that you click on this photograph and view the enlarged image for a better perspective.

 

This is a release mechanism which allows for bleeding water off the canal into a creek which flows north to the Lehigh River. This overflow drainage outlet is located downstream from guard lock 8

 

The Josuha White II at it's winter dock on the canal at the Hugh Moore Canal Park.

 

Another view of the Josiah White II. This canal boat has been modified to transport tourist on a mule powered journey through a portion of the canal.

 

The Josuha White II loading passengers in the early spring in the Hugh Moore Canal Park.

 

The Josiah White II is shown with the traditional two mules towing the canal boat downstream with a reenactor playing the part of Captain's wife and mule tender.

 

The Josuha White II on it's journey down the canal in the Hugh Moore Canal Park.

 

This is a photograph of the Historical marker in the Hugh Moore Canal Park.

 

Looking through the lock at lower gates of lock #47. The lower gates are of the V' type while the upper gates were drop gates.

 

Lower gates from lower end of lock #47. Lift for this lock was 8.6 feet.

 

Lower gates of lock #47 looking through the lock back upstream.

Locks #48 and #49 are buried under railroad fill. Lock #49 was the original outlet lock for Section 8. Both locks were buried and replaced by a new outlet lock when the Lehigh Valley Railroad was built through this area.

 

This is a view of the 'new' outlet lock from upstream. The outlet lock is the lowest lock on the Lehigh Canal. A bridge crosses the lower end which was used by mules crossing from the towpath to the river bank. The lock was rebuilt in 1910 and again in 1977. The lock has been fully restored and is in operational condition.

 

Gearing mechanism for the outlet lock. Since the lock was rebuilt in the early 1900's and again in 1979, a different form of gearing was used replacing the old dog house design. The upper gate for the outlet lock is a drop gate.

 

Lower end of the outlet lock. Lift for this lock was 13.8 feet. This is the last lock on the Lehigh Canal. The bridge in the background was built by the Lehigh Valley Railroad. It is currently owned and used by the Norfolk Southern RR.

 

These are the ruins of a toll collector's house adjacent to the outlet lock.

 

The concrete dam depicted in this photograph is the current dam across the Lehigh River. This dam marks the lower end of the Lehigh Canal. The dam provides water to the Delaware Division Canal which has it's upper end here. The Delaware Division Canal follows the western bank of the Delaware River to the tidewater at Bristol. The city of Easton can be seen in the background, across the Lehigh River.

 

This photograph shows the Delaware River looking north from the south bank of the Lehigh. This point is also the end of the Lehigh River as it flows into the Delaware at the "Forks of the Delaware". Easton is to the left, Phillipsburg, New Jersey to the right. In the background can be seen two bridges. The first bridge (green), is known as the free bridge which connects Easton with Phillipsburg. The second bridge (silver), farther north, is the Route 22 toll bridge connecting Pennsylania and New Jersey.

As indicated, the Delaware Division Canal begins at this point. Canal boats transporting coal from Mauch Chunk to market in Philadelphia would leave the Lehigh Canal here and proceed south toward Bristol using the Delaware Division Canal. Lock #24 which was the northern most lock on the Delaware Division Canal followed the west bank of the Delaware River south. The photograph below shows the entrance to lock #24 of the Delaware Division Canal.

The Delaware Division Canal presents yet another unique challenge and loads of cycling opportunities and could well be the next warm weather project. Or, perhaps the Upper Division of the Lehigh Canal (North from Jim Thorpe), or perhaps both, in time.

This last and final photo shows a pair of Norfolk Southern locomotives pulling a consist out of Allentown Yard, crossing a trestle bridge high above lock #24 on the Delaware Division Canal, as they head east across the Delaware River into New Jersey. The bridge was originally built by the Lehigh Valley Railroad...  But that's another story altogether, and most likely, material for future adventures and yet another web site.

 

    Epilogue

 

View a map of the area of the Lehigh Canal

View a more detailed map of the Canal System


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copyright © 2003 by Everette Carr. All rights reserved.

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Lehigh Canal & Navigation Company
History of the Lehigh Canal

  

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