Ridgefield in Fairfield County, Connecticut — The American Northeast (New England)
The Spotting Tower and Railroad Warehousing
—The Museum in the Streets —
The Small, White Octagonal Building on the corner was originally built as a boathouse on the estate of F.E. Lewis. It was moved behind the high school on East Ridge during World War II, and used as a warming hut for volunteers looking for enemy planes on the tower next to it. Over 200 men, women and children counted and identified more than 2,000 planes. In 1944 the Army shut down the site, but it was reactivated during the Cold War in the early 1950s. The warming hut was moved and the spotting tower remained standing until 1971.
A Warehouse Was Built by Richard Osborn and William O. Gilbert on lower Bailey Avenue in 1880 shortly after the completion of the Branchville railroad spur in 1870. It sat on four and a half acres and was part of their lumberyard. It housed an elevator used to carry grain to the upper part of the building and also served as a warehouse for D.F. Bedient's Store. (Marker Number 3.)
Location. 41° 16.91′ N, 73° 29.781′ W. Marker is in Ridgefield, Connecticut, in Fairfield County. Marker is at the intersection of Bailey Avenue and Main Street (Connecticut Route 35), on the right when traveling east on Bailey Avenue. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 24 Bailey Avenue, Ridgefield CT 06877, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. Bailey Avenue: A Short-Cut to the Train Station (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line but has been reported missing); The Museum in the Streets (about 500 feet away); The Great Fire of 1895 (about 600 feet away); More of the Great Fire (about 600 feet away); A Much-Loved Old Church and a Watering Trough for Horses (about 600 feet away); The Village in the 1900s (about 700 feet away); Main Street in the Late 1800s (about 700 feet away); The Ridgefield Train Station (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Ridgefield.
More about this marker. The photos on the marker show the spotting tower with warming hut at its base and workers loading a Bedient's appliance store truck from a railcar in front of the warehouse.
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. Together, they comprise the Museum in the Streets.
Categories. • Industry & Commerce • Notable Buildings • Railroads & Streetcars •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on June 6, 2010, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut. This page has been viewed 726 times since then and 12 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on June 6, 2010, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut.