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New Scotland Archives — The Altamont Enterprise, October 20, 2011

Crowning glory for historic church restored

By Melissa Hale-Spencer

NEW SCOTLAND — The dragon’s teeth are back on top of the church.

Or, in restoration parlance, the damaged crenellated parapet on the bell tower has been replaced.

Either way, the New Scotland Presbyterian Church is appropriately crowned as it heads into 2012 — its 225th year.

“The dragon’s teeth came down because they were rotted out,” said John Griffin, the church’s building and grounds commissioner. A long-time member and elder of the church, Griffin also sings in its choir.

He estimated that the dragon’s teeth came down a half-dozen years ago. “They were falling down; it was the work of time, Mother Nature, and gravity,” Griffin said.

The work of building the new molding to match the old was done by Keith Tuzzolo of Krumkill Road in Slingerlands. The new parapet was installed on Tuesday morning atop the church at 2010 New Scotland Road.

The cost of the work totaled $8,900. The Landmarks Conservancy’s Sacred Sites Program approved a matching grant of $1,500 for the project.

Peg Breen, president of The New York Landmarks Conservancy, wrote to Holly Cameron, the church’s pastor, this spring, “The Conservancy commends you and the congregation for recognizing the historic importance of this sacred site and maintaining it for future generations.”

The New Scotland Presbyterian Church is one of over 650 houses of worship in New York State that has received more than $6.5 million in grants from the Sacred Sites Fund, supporting restoration and repair projects totaling over $500 million, Breen wrote.

The current New Scotland Presbyterian Church building was constructed in 1849 and placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2010.

On Tuesday afternoon, Griffin exclaimed of the new dragon’s teeth, “They’re looking good in the neighborhood.” He noted the upcoming 225th anniversary celebration and concluded, “Our motto is: Original landlord still offering sanctuary.”

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