CHAZY - After Dr. George Clark passed away in May, his house was left to the Alice T. Miner Museum. Now, the museum needs to decide where to go from there.
Museum members hope the residents of the town of Chazy, including Sciota and West Chazy, will want to accept the house, with various ideas for plans to be decided.
"Really, we would like the building to be used for the benefit of the whole town," said museum board member David Martin.
To determine what the people of the town would like to see of the building, a survey has been created, which Martin is asking people to complete by Friday, Jan. 1.
"We really would like people to know there is a survey and we hope they'll participate," he said. "It's a great opportunity for the town of Chazy if we can develop a plan for using it and we would like that plan to be based on what the people in the town want."
If the circa 1813 house, located on Fiske Road, is not accepted by the museum within a year, the house will be surrendered to the Clinton County Historical Association.
One potential issue with the museum accepting the house is the economic feasibility of the museum, explained Town Supervisor Staub G. Spiegel.
"That's the main concern right now is just seeing if it can all work. It would be a beautiful addition to the town to keep it as part of the history," he added.
According to Richard West, a local builder, the house is in good shape.
"But, of course any house needs a little bit of this and a little bit of that," said Martin.
In brainstorming options for the house, if the museum does accept it, Martin said there would be an exhibit in memory of Clark's mother, Harriet, who collected furniture.
"For instance, in Sciota, there used to be a furniture factory back in the 1800s," explained Martin. "He has a bed, a school bed that was made in the Sciota Manufacturing Company."
Located in the house is another bed, which belonged to William H. Seward, the former Secretary of State known for purchasing Alaska for the U.S.
Other ideas would be an exhibit devoted to childhood, as some of Clark's toys and books from his childhood are still located in the house.
However, there would be other plans for the house, besides exhibitions. Martin is hoping to have a reception hall as well as other programs.
"We're fishing for ideas," said Martin.
If interested in voicing your opinion about Clark's home, the Chazy-Westport Telephone Company will be sending out a copy of the survey to all of their customers. The survey will also be located at D & D Market in Sciota, Guma's Restaurant and Dodge Library in West Chazy, the Chazy Town Office, Alice T. Miner Museum, Chazy Central Rural School main office, and the Chazy Public Library.
Upon completion of the survey, participants may return them to where they received the survey.
"So, far people have been very positive," said Martin. "They like Dr. Clark ... they like the house, and they would like to see this happen."
For more information, contact Martin at 493-3041.