Alie’s sister Michelle, who was with us, had to fly back to Costa Rica. Not wanting to do anything tiring before her flight, we wandered into Syracuse’s shopping mall, Destiny U.S.A.
As often happens, we stumbled into an unexpected and unknown (to us) delight: the Philadelphia Toboggan Company Carousel #18. It sits on the second floor of the mall in an area clearly built to show it off.
Carved and manufactured in 1909 in Germantown, Pennsylvania, the carousel was first used in Louisville, Kentucky then Worcester, Massachusetts and then Erie Pennsylvania. Master carver Leo Zoller was paid $1000 for a year’s work to carve the 42 horses.
The carousel was refurbished by the company in the 1920s before going to Long Branch Park in Syracuse, New York and then Roseland Park in Canandaigua in 1941 where it was used for 43 years until the park closed in 1985. The Pyramid Companies of Syracuse purchased it, took two years to restore it, and moved it to the current location in October 1990.
A hand-carved carousel horse may not have the same asthetic characteristics of a statue in a European museum, an ancient marble Roman copy of a Greek work by an unknown artist. But I am pleased to see one anyway. I am pleased to find it in a place that doesn’t make the pages of a New York or L.A. newspaper. I am thrilled to see it still in use making a child happy.
Click on photos to enlarge.