Monday, August 31, 2015

Attention C-GCC Students Without Cars

Last year, Hudson FORWARD initiated a ride share program to provide transportation for students from Hudson to Columbia-Greene Community College. The program was a success, helping students get to and from classes and make connections with fellow students with cars and other Hudsonians willing to give them a lift to the campus out on Route 23.

The new semester at C-GCC begins next Tuesday, September 8. In preparation, Hudson FORWARD is trying to match up students needing rides with volunteer drivers willing to take them to and from the C-GCC campus. If you are one or the other, click here and fill out the form so that Hudson FORWARD can find you a ride or match you up with students from Hudson who need rides.

In Defense of the City Website

Ever since the City of Hudson website went online back in 2002, people have been complaining about it. The biggest criticism seems to be that it's not attractive; it doesn't present Hudson in the way we would like others to see us.

There's no argument there. The design is pretty frumpy. The defense is that Digital Towpath, which is the platform used for the City website, has only a limited number of templates to choose from. There are currently 130 municipalities--villages, towns, counties, and one city (Hudson)--that use Digital Towpath, and you can find the links to all of these websites here. Clicking on the links, you will see the similarities, but you will also see that it is possible, even given the limitations, to create a fairly appealing design. The websites for the Village of Canajoharie and Franklin County are evidence of the possibilities.

Another criticism of the website is that it's hard to find things, and admittedly there are challenges. Sometimes things aren't quite where you would expect them to be, but more often than not they're there. You just have to be persistent, and if you are, you can discover wonders! One of the advantages of Digital Towpath is that it has an enormous capacity, and for the past thirteen years, people in City Hall have been digitizing documents and uploading them to the website. 

Among the documents uploaded by the Department of Public Works is a report by Vince Wallace which lists all the Civil War veterans buried in the Grand Army of the Republic section of the cemetery and provides a map with the location of each grave.

Also among the DPW documents is the endlessly fascinating Water Tap Book, which will tell you not only when your house was hooked up to the municipal water supply, but also, if your house is located on an east-west street, what your house number was before the City switched to hundred blocks in 1888-1889.

If you click on "History" in the left column on the homepage, you will find all the previous versions of the city charter, from 1823 to 1949, and one hundred and fifty years of Common Council minutesfrom 1833 to 1983.

In addition, you can find on the website the 2002 Comprehensive Plan, the 2011 Local Waterfront Revitalization Plan, the master concept plan for the North Bay Recreation and Natural Area, the tax rolls, and many other documents to help you satisfy your curiosity and while away the hours. 

The website is an extensive and valuable resource for Hudson residents, and all it needs is a facelift, some updating, and a little refinement. Perhaps it's possible with Digital Towpath, as it is with Google Blogger, to change the template and the look of the website without re-creating the whole thing.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Not to Be Missed

Seth Rogovoy on the Rogovoy Report comments on the mayor's press conference on Friday: "Mayor at the Bridge: Press Conference or Campaign Event?"


Scenes from a Fourth Ward Block Party

Rich Volo, who is running for alderman in the Fourth Ward, held a block party at the northern end of the linear park this afternoon, and Gossips was there, along with many folks from the neighborhood and several Democratic candidates, including Ken Golden who is running for Columbia County district attorney. 

At right: Candidates Michael O'Hara (First Ward alderman) and Golden

Mayoral candidate Tiffany Martin Hamilton
Candidates Rick Rector (First Ward alderman) and Tom DePietro (Common Council president)

Gossips, Joey, and Volo

Seen Just Now on State Street


Saturday, August 29, 2015

Sidewalks, Crosswalks/City, County

At the Common Council Police Committee meeting last Monday, it was agreed that a stop sign--or maybe two--was needed at West Court and Allen streets. Always a treacherous corner because of the way drivers tend not to stay on their side of the roadway when negotiating the turn from West Court onto Allen or from Allen onto West Court, it has become even more hazardous since the work on the courthouse was completed and the building reopened last November.

Before the restoration and expansion of the courthouse, there was a sidewalk that went along the south side of Allen Street and met up with the sidewalk on the east side of West Court Street. When the parking lot was resurfaced, after the construction at the courthouse was complete, the sidewalk was not replaced. Instead the asphalt of the parking lot was continued out into the street, and crosswalk bars were painted where the sidewalk should be.

In the past, when there was a proper sidewalk in place, the occasional befuddled tourist would miss the turn and end up in the parking lot, but now, with nothing but a crosswalk painted on continuous asphalt, only those familiar with Hudson know that West Court Street doesn't just keep going. Even people working at the courthouse, who should know better, now seem emboldened to drive straight into the parking lot with little or no regard for cars approaching on Allen Street.

Instead of assuming this is our problem to solve and installing stop signs, the City of Hudson should insist that the county reinstate the sidewalk and make it clear that the entrance to the parking lot is the entrance to a parking lot and not the continuation of the street. At his press conference on Friday, Mayor Hallenbeck spoke of how the City of Hudson had for years maintained the state boat launch, implying that the state owed us and should therefore provide financial assistance in replacing the Ferry Street Bridge. By the same token, since the City gave Columbia County a 70 percent discount on the building permit fee for the courthouse, reducing the fee from $38,728 to $12,000, why doesn't city government take the position that the county owes us and should therefore help solve this problem, which is after all of their creation?

Proposed Garage Revision in Limbo

Unlike the Planning Board and the Zoning Board of Appeals, which meet only once a month, the Historic Preservation Commission meets twice a month--on the second Friday and the fourth Friday. At the first meeting of the month, the HPC reviews applications for certificates of appropriateness and directs the city attorney, who serves as counsel to the HPC, to draft the document granting or denying a certificate of appropriateness. The document is not boilerplate; it is meant to state with some specificity why a given project does or does not meet the requirements set forth in Hudson's preservation law. At the second meeting of the month, with the document before them stating the reasons for granting or denying a certificate of appropriateness, the HPC makes its final and official vote.

On August 14, with only five of the seven members present, the HPC voted on granting a certificate of appropriateness to the proposal to increase the height of the garage at 829 Warren Street to 19 feet. Three members were in favor (Peggy Polenberg, Phil Forman, Miranda Barry); two were opposed (David Voorhees and Rick Rector). Since four affirmative votes (the majority of the full commission) are needed to grant a certificate of appropriateness, the project was denied approval.

Yesterday, when it came time to vote on the language of the document denying the certificate of appropriateness, there were only four members present: Polenberg, Voorhees, Rector, and Forman. For the denial to be official, all four of them needed to vote in the affirmative. Polenberg did not. Rector, who chairs the HPC, indicated he would need to consult with counsel to determine what happens next.

Friday, August 28, 2015

At the Barricades

Mayor William Hallenbeck held a press conference today at the barricade that prevents vehicles from crossing the Ferry Street Bridge. In the announcement that went out yesterday, reference was made to "federal, state, and local government officials," but no one representing Hudson at the federal level was present, and at the state level, only Jeff Cleary, director of government relations for State Senator Kathy Marchione, was there.

Left to right: Cleary, Grattan, Hallenbeck, and aldermen Tiffany Garriga (Second Ward), Henry Hadded (Third Ward), Rick Rector (First Ward)
After recounting how he had shut down the bridge in the interest of public safety and sharing "a little history" of the 110-year-old bridge, the mayor launched into a detailed account of the bridge's current condition. "Rehabilitation is not a feasible alternative," he concluded. "Repairing the bridge is not an option." He called for "a united effort to replace the bridge." Stressing the urgency of replacing the bridge by calling Hudson and its waterfront "the most sought after location," the mayor announced that John "Duke" Duchessi and Bill Roehr, of TGW Consultants, would "lead the charge."

In his comments, Pat Grattan, chair of the Columbia County Board of Supervisors, praised Hallenbeck for his "swift action in closing this very dangerous bridge." He went on to say, "I've seen how costly bridges are," and expressed the opinion that a municipality like Hudson should not have to bear the expense alone. Common Council president Don Moore, in his comments, set the cost of a new bridge at $2.5 million.

The Word on the Crosswalks

The painting of the crosswalks was a topic of discussion at Wednesday night's Public Works Committee meeting, although it was not part of DPW superintendent Rob Perry's report. It was brought up by audience members.

Perry's explanation for the diagonal lines in the crosswalks--or zebras, as they are called--not being repainted was that the hot paint machine used to apply the lines had broken down, and rather than repair the antiquated machine, he was looking to lease a similar machine for the duration of the season. He also explained that temperature conditions had to be just right for the paint to be applied successfully. 

He went on to say that he wanted to migrate to a newer technique that involves sheets applied to the pavement with heat. The crosswalks at Park Place and Warren Street were done using this method two years ago and are proving to be more durable and long lasting than those done with a hot paint machine. But since the City has a significant amount of paint already purchased for the hot paint machine, Perry wants to use that up before switching to the new method.

An audience member challenged Perry's statement that the zebras couldn't be painted because of equipment failure. He said he witnessed DPW workers completing only the two parallel lines--the transverse lines--and going away. "This town needs as much safety for pedestrians as possible if it is to be a walkable city," he asserted and went on to question why all the markings for parking spaces had been done before the crosswalks had been painted.

Another audience member, Leo Carlin complained that the recently added signs marking the crosswalks at Union and Fourth streets "don't have any effect at all."

Gossips, remembering crosswalks in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, that were painted solid green between the two parallel white lines, asked if any studies had been done to determine what crosswalk patterns were most effective. Perry said there was a lot of research out there, but the issue for Hudson was resources. He noted that two years ago a number of new crosswalks were created with grants through the Kids in Motion program coordinated by Kari Rieser, but there was no money to sustain them. According to Perry, painting crosswalks, stop bars, and parking spaces costs from $10,000 to $15,000 a year.

Curious to learn about the relative effectiveness of crosswalk patterns, Gossips searched the Internet and found a white paper on the subject prepared in 2013 for the Federal Highway Administration: "An Overview and Recommendations of High-Visibility Crosswalk Marking Styles." According to this study, colored or textured pavement "may lead to a false sense of security" for pedestrians, "zebras," which is what Hudson has had in the past, are considered effective, but "transverse lines," which, because of equipment failure, is what we've got now, are, according to this study, "particularly difficult for motorists to see."

An interesting aside from the study is this: "In the Netherlands, motorists are supposed to stop and yield to pedestrians crossing the road when a zebra crossing is present. If a zebra crossing is not present, vehicles do not have to yield the right-of-way." It seems in Hudson drivers who have very likely never driven in the Netherlands are following those rules and totally ignoring crosswalks now that the diagonal zebra stripes are missing.

On the topic of crosswalks, here's another discovery. Not long ago, during a discussion of crosswalks at a Council meeting, the crosswalks on Main Street in Great Barrington, which is also U.S. Route 7, were mentioned as examples of the way things should be. These crosswalks, many of which are in the middle of a block, are scrupulously observed by drivers. Why, it was asked, can't the same to true for crosswalks in Hudson?

This question was answered by an alderman, who authoritatively declared that the laws were different in Massachusetts. In Massachusetts a pedestrian only had to appear to be about to enter the crosswalk in order to have the right of way, whereas in New York a pedestrian actually had to be in the crosswalk for a vehicle to be required to stop. 

Here's what appears in Massachusetts General Law, Chapter 89, Section 11:
When traffic control signals are not in place or not in operation the driver of a vehicle shall yield the right of way, slowing down or stopping if need be so to yield, to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within a crosswalk marked in accordance with standards established by the department of highways if the pedestrian approaches from the opposite half of the traveled part of the way to within 10 feet of that half of the traveled part of the way on which said vehicle is traveling.
No driver of a vehicle shall pass any other vehicle which has stopped at a marked crosswalk to permit a pedestrian to cross, nor shall any such operator enter a marked crosswalk while a pedestrian is crossing or until there is sufficient space beyond the crosswalk to accommodate the vehicle he is operating, notwithstanding that a traffic control signal may indicate that vehicles may proceed.
Whoever violates any provision of this section shall be punished by a fine of not more than $200.
Here's the New York State Vehicle & Traffic Law, Article 27, on the same subject:
1151. Pedestrians' right of way in crosswalks. (a) When traffic-control signals are not in place or not in operation the driver of a vehicle shall yield the right of way, slowing down or stopping if need be to so yield, to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within a crosswalk on the roadway upon which the vehicle is traveling, except that any pedestrian crossing a roadway at a point where a pedestrian tunnel or overpass has been provided shall yield the right of way to all vehicles.
(b) No pedestrian shall suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and walk or run into the path of a vehicle which is so close that it is impractical for the driver to yield.
(c) Whenever any vehicle is stopped at a marked crosswalk or at any unmarked crosswalk at an intersection to permit a pedestrian to cross the roadway, the driver of any other vehicle approaching from the rear shall not overtake and pass such stopped vehicle.
There isn't much difference between these two laws except in Massachusetts drivers who don't yield the right of way to pedestrians are subject to a $200 fine and in New York it seems necessary to include in the law what should be commonsense: "No pedestrian . . . shall walk or run into the path of a vehicle."

One may conclude from all this that, if there were sufficient money in the City budget and the zebra crosswalks could be properly maintained, the physical crosswalks in Hudson would be about as good as it gets, but as good as it gets falls short of the goal. When, at Wednesday's Public Works Committee meeting Alderman Nick Haddad (First Ward) opined that the problem of drivers ignoring crosswalks was "not a DPW issue but a police issue," Council president Don Moore mused, "There must be a way--a campaign--that can make this a pedestrian friendly city." Gossips agrees. There must be a way.

Problem Solved

An objection voiced by some aldermen when asked to approve the mayor's resolution to give $100,000 to the Galvan Initiatives Foundation for the "fit-up" of the senior center was that the money was needed for staff and programming, but the mayor has fixed that, "at low or no cost to the city." Working with Tyrone Hedgepeth, recreation supervisor at the Youth Center, aldermen Alexis Keith (Fourth Ward) and Tiffany Garriga (Second Ward) of the Young & Aging Committee, and Doris Moore, commissioner of aging, the mayor has come up with a schedule that will "keep the center open and running for 37.5 hours a week." He announced this in a press release issued on Wednesday. The details of the plan are reported by John Mason in today's Register-Star: "Getting with the program--City looks at new activities for seniors." 

Here's the schedule for Monday.
8 to 9 a.m.  Open Recreational (playing cards, reading, drawing, knitting, crochet, etc.)
9 to 10 a.m.  Health & Beauty/cooking
10:30 a.m. to noon  Aerobics
Noon to 12:30 p.m.  Lunch (Thanks to Salvation Army)
12:30 to 1:30 p.m.  Book Club (Also with new Library when open)
1:30 to 4 p.m.  Open Recreational
The schedule for the rest of the week can be found in Mason's article.

According to the mayor, the senior program now offered at the Youth Center serves "about 40 people," but "the new center will most likely bring more seniors to the site."

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Prepare for the Primary

The primary election is just two weeks from today: Thursday, September 10. Registered Democrats in the First and Fourth wards will choose two candidates out of three; Republicans in the Fourth and Fifth wards will also be selecting their alderman candidates. See Gossips"Primary Prep" for details and links to sample ballots.

In Memoriam

Hudson has lost another well known and well loved dog: Archie.

Archie was a thoroughly Hudson dog. He came to live here as a puppy and spent all of his long and happy life in Hudson. His beautifully groomed, glossy, silky self was a constant presence at John Davis Gallery. Every morning, Archie and his human would walk the two blocks up Warren Street to work, and every evening, they would walk the two blocks down Warren Street and back home.

Sweet and beloved, Archie will be greatly missed by his human and by everyone who knew him or only saw him pass by on his regular walks.

Night Is Not a Four-Letter Word

Last week, Gossips drew attention to the new green "Welcome" signs at all the entrances to Hudson. This brought collateral attention to the sign explaining the city's parking rules during the hours of darkness and its unfortunate spellings. 

Last night, at the Common Council Public Works Committee meeting, DPW superintendent Rob Perry revealed a new sign, with the words NIGHT and MIDNIGHT spelled correctly, which will soon appear, if it doesn't already, along with the new "Welcome" sign, on every street or road that leads into the city. 


And So It Ends . . .

Katie Kocijanski reports in today's Register-Star that the Columbia County Industrial Development Agency "has finalized the 33-acre land transfer and financing of the proposed Ginsberg's Foods expansion after almost two years": "IDA closes Ginsberg's deal." 

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Eyes on the Street

Work began today on the new porticoes at 202 and 204 Warren Street, the Brousseau Buildings.

The design for the new porticoes, shown below, was granted a certificate of appropriateness by the Historic Preservation Commission more than a year ago. 

Unfortunately, the new porticoes bear only the vaguest resemblance to the original porticoes, documented in these photographs by Lynn Davis, from the monumental Warren Street Project. 

Copyright 1995 Lynn Davis

Copyright 1995 Lynn Davis
The original porticoes were removed soon after the buildings were purchased by Eric Galloway more than ten years ago. At the time, it was alleged that the essential elements of the porticoes--the columns--were in storage and would be returned, restored, to the buildings at some future time. That plan, if it ever existed, was soon abandoned in favor of a new design.


Talking About Improvement

"Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it." The quote is attributed to philosopher and poet George Santayana, but it seems to apply to the Hudson City School District. In the case of HCSD, the past is not all that long ago.

Last Thursday, the HCSD Board of Education conducted a "facilitated conversation" to talk about ways to "raise the bar, close the gap, and align curriculum and instruction to more rigorous standards." The Register-Star reported on that meeting today: "Officials hope that roundtable discussions lead to real solutions." According to the report: "A few of the more popular solutions were: school uniforms, parental portals that remind of upcoming assignments, community schools, enrichment programs from John L. Edwards and professional development and expanding the power of peace throughout the district."

The press release that announced last Thursday's meeting and the article in today's Register-Star make it sound like this is a brand-new undertaking, but not that long ago, in 2009 and 2010, some earnest and serious-minded people--from the Board of Education, the HCSD facility, and the community--formed what was called the Task Force on Student Academic Performance. Over the course of nine months, this task force conducted sixteen formal meetings; discussed dozens of education topics; reviewed scores of professional articles; interviewed national, state, and local education experts; visited a high-performing school district with a demographic similar to HCSD's; conducted a districtwide survey on communication; and met with HCSD's department heads. In the end, they delivered a report to the Board of Education, which not only analyzed the problems but made specific recommendations to effect improvement. That report, which was presented to the BOE on February 22, 2010, can still be found on the HCSD websiteThe document is identified as a "Draft Report" because the process that produced it was meant to be ongoing. The last three recommendations in the report--there were fifty in all--were:
  • Continue the work of the Task Force.
  • Prioritize the Task Force's recommendations and determine which ones shall be implemented and when.
  • Provide for a means to review progress on implementation of the Task Force recommendations.
One wonders if anything was done with this report beyond putting it on the website, and if nothing was, why not?

News from the Street

With what has got to be the most beautiful press release Gossips has ever received, Colin Stair announced today that he has purchased 551 Warren Street.

The text of the press release reads:
It is with great pleasure that I share the news that I have recently purchased the building at 551 Warren Street adjacent to my business, Stair Galleries. I am very excited to be part of the continuing growth and evolution of Hudson, where I have been part of the business community for over twenty-five years. The strong friendships and business relationships I have formed in Hudson have helped Stair Galleries to flourish. My family put down roots in this community many years ago and we have enjoyed raising our children in this close-knit, creative and diverse place that we call home. I have watched our small city define its identity, growing from a post-industrial city with economic and social issues in the 1980’s into the multi-faceted and thriving city it is today. The restoration of so many of Hudson’s beautiful and historic buildings has been a pleasure to witness. I am proud to be a part of this fellowship, where residents and business owners share common interests and goals.
Hudson continues to grow in positive ways, attracting new businesses and entrepreneurs every day. It was with this in mind that I decided to pursue the purchase of 551 Warren Street with the idea of creating rental spaces for small businesses. I am currently working with a team of architects and designers to develop spaces that will allow small companies or individuals to work in a creative environment, possibly co-working shared spaces, with high-speed internet and proximity to everything that Hudson has to offer. My hope is that the street level will remain a traditional retail space for one or two tenants.
This is an exciting project for me and underlines my commitment to Hudson and its continued growth and success. I welcome the community’s input and ideas about how best to use the space at 551 Warren Street to best benefi t those who want to make Hudson their home.
The building at 551 Warren Street previously housed Noonan Antiques and Crawford & Associates.


Of Interest

Composer and Hudson resident, Joseph C. Phillips, Jr., was interviewed by Rachel Martin on NPR's Weekend Edition this past Sunday. If you missed it, you can hear (or read) the interview here. Phillips' new album, Changing Same, will be out on Friday. Excerpts from the album can be heard here.

Hudson Makes Another List

Last Thursday, Thrillist published its list of "The 10 Best Weekend Getaways from NYC." Third on the list, after "Best family getaway: Mohonk Mountain House" and "Best bike getaway: Long Island, NY," is "Best food getaway: Hudson, NY." The specific recommendations include the Red Dot for brunch, Moto Coffee Machine for an afternoon latte, and Crimson Sparrow or Fish & Game for dinner.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Eye Around Town

The Wedgwood blue louvers, approved by the Historic Preservation Commission, were installed in the Short Street facade of the armory today.

The color of the louvers is presumably the color that was to be matched by the paint on the window frames and sash, but it seems, to Gossips' eye at least, not to be quite the same.


The Scandal of 1922: Part XIII

The trial of Chief John Cruise, for dereliction of duty, came to an end on May 26, 1922. The chief himself was the only person to take the stand that day for further cross examination by corporation counsel William J. DeLamater. The following excerpts are from the report on the final day in court that appeared in the Columbia Republican for May 30, 1922. 
The trial of John Cruise, Jr., before the Commission of Public Safety, is over. The end came quickly on Friday afternoon. At 4 o'clock in the afternoon the hearing was reconvened and Chief Cruise resumed his place on the witness stand for cross-examination. Corporation Counsel Wm. J. DeLamater conducted the cross-examination. Attorney Samuel B. Coffin was not present. Only once did the cross-examination wax rather warm--over the alleged old charges which the witness did not recall. Chief Cruise was the only person on the witness stand on the closing day. His testimony dealt chiefly with points in previous testimony which both sides wished to clear up. . . . 
The concluding day of the trial was attended by the smallest gallery of all in the past. There were vacant chairs in the Council rooms.
In his closing argument Mr Herzberg raked the reputation of the detective agency operators with heavy fire, and then went into various phases of the charges. . . . [He] stated that in accordance with the testimony they would not consider demotion, a suspension or a fine and that if the decision is adverse it shall be reviewed before the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court. . . . 
[Chief Cruise testified that] as to his tours of the city in a motorcycle side-car said side-car was had in fall of 1921; said that before that they walked about; said he made records of bad holes in streets and reported same to Commission; said only record of these trips was "left for patrol" and on his return "in command." Unless arrest was made nothing in the record shows about what he saw on trips. . . . 
It was exactly 5:15 o'clock when both sides declared testimony closed.
Mr Herzberg then moved for the dismissal of the charges and briefly related several points in the case. President Whitbeck stated that the Commission had gone into his matter seriously and had decided to have the testimony written out first, hear the closing arguments, and the give the entire matter serious and careful consideration before arriving at their conclusion, thus they wished to reserve the decision until they could study the matter.
President Whitbeck in stating the Commission's position to Mr Herzberg, pointed out that they were laymen and had not the experience of attorneys in examining evidence and that it was not easy to lay aside everything else to do this. He said that the Commission in justice to itself, the charges and the Chief, they should carefully study the evidence, hear the arguments and allow the case to be left in their hands for a later decision.
What seems most bizarre about the whole proceeding is that the investigation of Chief Cruise has initiated by the Commission of Public Safety, the charges against him were brought by the Commission of Public Safety, the trial was conducted by the Commission of Public Safety, and the case will be decided by the Commission of Public Safety. We'll learn about the decision they rendered in our next report about the Scandal of 1922.

Stalking Officer Miller

Just before the Fourth of July, Gossips became fascinated with a policeman who started his law enforcement career more than a century ago, on March 3, 1914: Officer Frank E. Miller. A hundred years ago, in the days preceding Independence Day, Officer Miller was mentioned almost daily for arrests made on his regular beat, which was the part of Hudson nearest the river--along Front Street, around the docks, and at the train station. 

While Gossips was piecing together and retelling Officer Miller's story from newspaper accounts, a reader turned to census records and reported in a comment some pretty surprising information about Officer Miller. Frank E. Miller appears in the U.S. census records for 1920, 1930, and 1940. In each decade, his residence is 931 Columbia Street, and his occupation is listed as "policeman." 

What's surprising though is that in 1920 his age is listed as 47, in 1930 as 57, and in 1940 as 66. (His birthday must have been right around the time they did the decennial census.) Gossips had imagined that he was a young man when he joined the force and distinguished himself by arresting drunks and drifters, intervening in domestic squabbles, foiling attempted burglaries, and pursuing stolen cars, but in 1914, he would have already been 40.  And when he retired in 1944, after serving for thirty years on the Hudson police force, he was 71. 

931 Columbia Street, Officer Miller's home