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Jefferson County Historical Society feels the heat, welcomes public again

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Things are heating up again at the Jefferson County Historical Society.

In early November, just when events and activity at the society, headquartered at the Paddock Mansion, began to get rolling after several months of being shuttered, fate gave it the cold shoulder when the main boiler at the building was shut down due to safety concerns following an inspection by Hyde-Stone Mechanical Contractors. The heating system was found to have excessive rust with cracks in some of the unit. It was recommended it be shuttered due to the danger of carbon monoxide.

The lowest estimate for a new boiler came in at $35,354 and the society asked for the public’s help to fund the project. Boiler installation was completed on Tuesday morning. “They fired it up today, and it’s getting warmer in here,” Historical Society Director Toni Engleman said Tuesday. “They’re monitoring the system today to make sure everything is in working order and if it stays working like it is now, we’ll be open for our regular hours on Thursday morning.”

Those regular hours for the Paddock Mansion, 228 Washington St., are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday.

The new boiler system in the building was installed by Dexter-based Ontario HVAC Solutions.

“We ended up getting enough donations to cover the cost of the boiler installation, and we actually exceeded the amount,” Engleman said. “We have more money than for the installation itself.”

She said the total amount raised was $44,560.

“Since people earmarked for the boiler project, we’re going to keep that (extra) money in a designated fund for any repairs or any leaks that may happen,” Engleman said.

Among the funding that made the boiler project possible was $25,000 from the Northern New York Community Foundation: $10,000 was from the foundation’s general community grants fund, $10,000 came from its Mart Liinve Family Charitable Fund and $5,000 from the Walker Family Community Fund.

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