I am sitting in a coffee shop in Downtown Brooklyn as I type this. It’s clear and bright outside. I was back on Governors Island yesterday. It was good seeing old faces along with some new ones. I can already tell it’s going to be a special summer. We had our orientation, part of which included a special behind-the-scenes look at the restoration of the eagle atop Fort Jay. The sculpture is one of the oldest built-structures in New York City, tracing back to the construction of the fort in the 1790s. Over the centuries that Army and then the Coast Guard did what they could to preserve the sandstone figure; still, because historic preservation falls outside the bounds of their missions, their efforts were helpful but sometimes haphazard. Time, salt air and harbor winds took their toll, and Superstorm Sandy damaged the statue even further. The current renovation work has been progressing with all the accouterments of modern preservation techniques. As it turns out Governors Island National Monument is in the running with nineteen other NPS sites in a competition for funding to further the work. Learn more–and vote–here if you are so inclined. One can vote once a day through July 5.
Find your park.