Lazaretto Quarantine Station

Tinnicum Township, PA

Your Thoughts Archive

Below are archives of comments by site visitors concerning the Lazaretto. Comments are now closed, but if you have strong feelings about the Lazaretto and the material presented on this website, we encourage you to share it on social media. There are links at the bottom to share on Facebook, G+ and Twitter, and most images throughout the site are easily pinned on Pinterest. Thanks to everone who has contributed and taken an interest in the Lazaretto

Wow! found this site. First i just want to say...this Lazareto is one special place in history and im so glad it is going to be saved and given the resect it desereves! Let me tell my wonderfull times i spent at the Lazaretto.. or as i knew it better "Nancys Home" you see my freind Nancy Mills grew up in this place. living upstairs with her mom and dad; also on the other side was her uncles place. Nancys mom died when she was very young and her father raised her. she was home school in her youth and pretty much stayed to her self. i met nancy after colledge and she had her apt in phila pa and was working as a school teacher. we went back to her "home on a reg bases. the building was so interesting and full of history...and i have been though the place fromm the top of the cupula...we liked that spot a lot...though all the building.there was even a "hidden" rome upstairs that when opened you saw rare antique dolls and a collection of "Hummel" figureines that well ....unbelieveable. I just loved spending time with my freind there wether it was a cup of tea up in the old kitchen with her pop or throwing sticks out to the river for the dogs to retrieve. but i guess my favorite will always be.. siting up in the top talking away with my freind. And listening to the histoy of the place she was so well informed about. i really am lucky to have had this time in my life. :)
sher nelson, some where USA [01-13-2013]

Hi, I just stumbled upon your site. This Pennsylvanian Lazaretto probably is the oldest quarantine station still in existence, but just so you know, the Columbia River Quarantine Station at Knappton Cove, Washington still stands. It's made of several buildings, and though the warf and ships no longer are there, the buildings still stand; the hospital is now the museum. It's celebrating its 100th anniversary this weekend. It examined and fumigated many ships entering the Columbia River near Astoria, Oregon from 1899 to 1938. For more info, if you're interested in a fellow lazaretto station, feel free to visit: Even though we're across the country, it's pretty cool to see this kind of history still standing.
anonymous, Astoria, Oregon [07-24-2012]

"Third Annual Flag Raising Weekend"Coming to the 1799 Lazaretto, on beautiful Delaware River waterfront, on June 2nd and 3rd, 2012 is the Third Annual Quarantine Season Flag Rising. This year's main Living History theme will be "The First Opening Quarantine Season of the 1799 Lazaretto."..... for more info
Anthony L Selletti [04-30-2012]

Hi,Just trying to do some family research and was wondering if there was a Dr. Jesse Griffith associated with Lazaretto? Found this connection in some family papers and was wondering if indeed they are correct. Thank you
gail, currently colorado [03-04-2012]

I learned to fly a sea plane there. Bob Mills operated a flight school based in the Lazaretto in 1998. Is it still there? [12-31-2011]

This site seems like a valuable reminder of our history, when disease control was not easy and measures were harsh. Then there is the contrasting use as a resort after the medical use was abandoned! This pocket of U.S. history is too precious to neglect. I want to visit it someday and see what it really is.
Roberta Proctor, Baltimore, MD [10-16-2011]

I think the federal government should make the Lazaretto a national park... The developer who wanted to raze the building should be ashamed...
Brazwell, Berwyn, PA [10-16-2011]

I think our Gov. should support the renovation of the Lazaretto historic place in Essington, Pa
Maggie Stashinko, Eddystone Pa [08-14-2011]

This site really helped me with a project
anonymous [05-12-2011]

can we have a tour of lazaretto?
tommy word [01-15-2011]

The Quarantine Station Flag Lowering/History and Mystery Day on October 16th 2010 brought out over 400 people and much need awareness to the 1799 Lazaretto. There are already 3 events planed for 2011.Please join us on Sat June 5th 2011 a Quarantine Station Flag Rising with 1860's quarantine hospital living history impressions. The Riverfront Ramble is Sept 18th & 19th 2011with a historical timeline living history impressions of the b1600's ­ 2010, and History & Mystery/ Flag Lowering Weekend on Sat & Sun Oct 8th & 9th WW 1 US Army Chandler Field living history impressions. For more information email us
Friends of the Lazaretto [11-03-2010]

Fortunately, I did have the chance to attend the Quarrantine Station Flag Raising a few months ago ... it was a momentus occasion. Now I hope they keep their word and start refurbishing the interior of the Quarrantine Station ... Sadly, all the pieces seem to be falling into place. The City of Philadelphia is claiming eminent domain wants to take over the "lower" part of Lester to extend their runways. It's a matter of time (15-20) Years before 75 to 80% of Tinicum Township is under the control of Philadephia, whether they like it or not; because I don't think the Township have the power or resources to put up a formible fight. It's funny that the new fire house sure looks like a mirror image of Phila Airport Fire Stations, hmmmmmmm and if you ever had a chance to drive through Tinicum lately, you would see more Phila Police than Tinicum Police.
Jack Joseph, Harrisburg, Pa [08-02-2010]

On September 14, 2007 an ignorant township residence told me no one cares what I think ... but since then, a wide wide range of citizens throughout the country of voiced their opinion(s) ... how's that for "resident who hates tree hugers, tinicum Twp. [09-14-2007]. History should always be preserved.
Jack Joseph, Harrisburg, PA [05-16-2010]

A truly outstanding web page, magnificently researched. Lazaretto has been one of my favorite sites for many years. Difficult to understand why it has not gotten more publicity. I am a Girard College historian and among Stephen Girard's papers are several references to Lazaretto where his ships stopped before coming up the river.
Thomas J. DiFilippo [05-13-2010]

I have been researching my husband's family genealogy for years. They came into Philadelphia 1826 from New Brunswick, Canada. They were from Ireland. I can't tell you how excited I was to know of this station. I don't seem to be able to find records of immigrants - are these available - will there be the opportunity to see them on-line in the near future? and will there be a chance to donate their names for a plaque? like Ellis Island! I look forward to a reply, thank you...
Sandra L Fleming, Corona, California [04-14-2010]

When will the renovation of the lazaretto begin?
Jack Joseph, Harrisburg, Pa [04-10-2010]

Hello ! (sorry for my bad english!) I am a young historian, and I am looking for the date of death of a young french canadian, maybe around 1841. His name: Jean-Baptiste-Henri Brien, born in Lower Canada in 1815, sons of Antoine Brien and Marie Tassé. Do you have some information to help me ?
Jonathan Lemire, Saint-Eustache (Quebec, Canada) [12-16-2009]

Is it possible to arrange a tour of Lazaretto?
Mary Higgins [12-09-2009]

Is it possible to arrange a tour of Lazaretto?
Mary Higgins [12-07-2009]

abdulrasdhi moh'd bello, birnin kebbi [10-28-2009]

Are you going to have any more tours of the Laretto place? I was facinated with the property and want to see it up close.
anonymous, Yeadon, Pa [09-18-2009]

Update to all who are interested: I have created a website to showcase historic documents and photos of the Lazaretto, as well as to share information about the site's preservation: The site is owned by Tinicum Township. A nonprofit board (the Lazaretto Preservation Association of Tinicum Township, or LPATT) consisting of township and historic preservation representatives is in charge of the preservation of the historic site. The board is currently considering several possible uses for the site, including commercial office space. The role of historical interpretation in the site has not been determined. So far, the LPATT has moved at a snail's pace. I believe public input will be important in this process; I don't know exactly when and how. Keep in mind: the township is not the enemy here! If the township had not stepped in to buy the property, the entire site would now be an airport parking facility. Many of us who are interested in historic preservation thought that the firehouse decision was shortsighted (and that there were better locations for the new fire station), but the fact remains that the township is a vital partner in the preservation of the site. Township officials are ultimately accountable to the voters of Tinicum, but are also amenable to calm, reasonable discussion. Let's apply some pressure, in a positive, civilized way.
David Barnes, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia PA [07-14-2009]

Truth and History Telling Ought to go Together I missed a chance to to take a tour of Lazaretto for 50 cents. That was almost fifty years ago. But even then, as a shy boy, I recognized the place as historic. I often regreat my shyness, I declined my father who asked if I wanted a tour. I did but I was too shy to enter the dark cave of a building, which seemed filled to overflowing. The darkness did make it seem very inviting. I suspect others felt the same way. It of tours I now speak. It is all the rage to claim am underground rail Road connection, and every site must boast a ghost and story. Fact: A fractional part of one percent of U.R.R. sites had tunnels. If a factoring is based on sites that claim a tunnel, however, well, it would seem that millions of sites must have existed, and only those that had tunnels survived. And the length of those tunnels increase - in length - with recent annual telling! Amazing! Enough. History is being corrupted - as we speak. We should resist from fibbing and the making up of stories. We should speak the truth. Ghosts! This is my reason for writing. Several years ago a tour bus group arranged for a stop at Lazaretto. Almost as an after thought - a would-be guide asked the logic question: "Did Lazaretto have a ghost?" The person to whom the question was addressed was very knowledgable. She said she did not know of a ghost. The guide then instructed that one for the tour should be found. No ghost was invented, however. But that is not the case for many sites. Shame on them! Thomas R. Smith,a.k.a William Penn -
Thomas R. Smith - "Tom" - a.k.a., William Penn, Currently: !39 Decker Street, Mansfield, Pa. 16933 [07-12-2009]

My husband I ran into this gem on a Sunday ride. It has such an interesting history that should be shared by all. What efforts are going on to restore this rich asset? Our family would love to get involved in volunteering in a restoration project.
Karen Pettinelli, Springfield, PA [06-15-2009]

the lazaretto is better condition now that was in the past 10 years. Tinicum township has done what it can to try to keep the building from becomeing anyworse and would like to hopefully restore it one day. The new firehouse was built in front of it which i see nothing wrong with because i have lived in the this town for the pst 19 years of my life and i can sya i have never seen people coming or going to see and it noone seemed to care about it until they head it was going to be domelished so honestly if you really cared go see it . And also why is it it a problem to some people if a firehouse was built i mean its a volunteer fire company. tese people deserve to have that building becuase of whaty they do adn the hard work they put so yeah.
My business [03-26-2009]

save the lazaretto !
Lisa, Essington [01-26-2009]

I am a history freak i love riding my bike down therebecause i live near there. It is sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo o fun.
Sam, pa [01-10-2009]

I am curious if one can visit the this building still being considered for demolition...? Only in Philadelphia... The Lazaretto is an historic should be taken over by the National Park Service and made into a landmark with special protection... Anyone agree? Jan
J. Sklaroff, Berwyn, PA [01-07-2009]

I lived in Delaware County all of my life and NEVER knew this place existed! I am really interested in seeing this historic site. They CANNOT bring this down. Any interest in having, FREE, a team of investigators for paranormal research and observation. This research would be a wonderful assest to have for this historic place. Please contact me at my home email address if there is interest in having our team perform an investigation, or better yet, how would we inquire, and to whom would we request an investigation? Thank you.
anonymous, Collingdale, PA [12-31-2008]

What a wonderful historic location! We look forward to working closely with the township to create a fun family attraction. As a visual art and design company, our job is to absorb the history of the Lazaretto. We have some really cool interactive ideas lined up.. we'll see you all very soon!
The Good Sun, Philadelphia [12-10-2008]

its a trap!
Admiral Ackbar of the Rebel Fleet, Mon Calamari [12-03-2008]

Did they eat muffins there? Because I love muffins. But I wouldnt want to eat muffins in this place. They would be filled with yellow fever and dead people and stuff. Eww. :(
:-{ [12-03-2008]

"Pathogens found a haven in the rapidly growing field of transportation as the world developed. Many diseases-such as yellow fever in Philadelphia and Black Death in Italy-reached their peaks because of trade and immigration. In a way, the Lazaretto protected virgin populations in Philadelphia from foreign germs and viruses. Don't you think we should preserve this valuable link to our past?"-Sarah I completely agree with you, Ms. Sarah. Some of us might not even BE here if it wasn't for the Lazaretto House! By golly! Why should we even have to argue for its sake!?? Gee willickers, these young wippersnappers know nothing of preserving history!
Count Monkeypants [12-02-2008]

"The Lazaretto house is really cool, I can't wait til they clean the inside for tours! Use the rough side of a sponge to get the blood off the tiles floors..."-Jack Are you some kind of freak? We're lucky the Lazaretto is still there to begin with! Also, the blood would surely be gone by now! And no, you wouldn't use the rough side of a sponge. A wet paper towel would be completely sufficient.
Jack [12-02-2008]

Hi, Howdy [12-02-2008]

I love the Lazaretto house sooo much! I wish they would make it a museum or something!
Mary Ann, Kalamazoo [12-02-2008]

The Lazaretto house is really cool, I can't wait til they clean the inside for tours! Use the rough side of a sponge to get the blood off the tile floors...
Jack [11-26-2008]

It would not be an entirely bad thing if the fire house is built. Appearance is a matter of opinion so the fire house doesn't have to make a visual difference. Furthermore, the fire house does not have to look visually unappealing to anyone's eye.
Mr controversy, lol town [11-26-2008]

Quite the place this is. If they are to decimate it to none but mere rubble, it would be exceedingly tragic. The Lazaretto house's destruction would bring the necessary publicity to make people pity its removal. But then it would be too late. Such a shame. tsk tsk tsk. The nerve of some Apartment developers. HMPH.
Lord Hankenstein, Yorkshire, Internal southern England [11-26-2008]

I think that if the Lazaretto house is torn down it will make a bigger story and cause more protest than if it was saved. THIS WHOLE THING MAKES NEGATIVE TWO SENSE TO ME!
Fancy Qat [11-26-2008]

The walls are seeping with seawater. It's my 9th day in Rapture, an underwater metropolis built in 1959. It's now 1967, and I got trapped here while scuba diving. Some splicers found and trapped me in this god-forsaken hell. I can hear them clawing at the door of this dank office, murmuring to themselves and weeping. My only chance of survival is the little sisters that wander the city. Unfortunately, they're guarded by Big Daddies-giant drill enormous diving suits. I'm going out. I have a pistol in my pocket, a Tommy gun, and a 00 Buck shotgun. I look out the window on the door, and no one's there. After kicking it open, I pull up my shotgun and a splicer lunges at me. After a round, the monster's head flies off and thuds against the hallway wall. More arrive, and I whip out the Tommy gun and fire away. Three corpses fly backwards, and the last one gets to close. I hit it in the head with the butt of the gun, and the splicer goes down. Now a booming, lumbering sound fills the air, accompanied by a little girl 's singing. The song chills my blood, but I have to continue. Big Daddies will only occupy enemies if attacked, of if the little sister says so. I turn the corner, and there it is. The Big Daddy is standing calmly next to the little sister, who is poking a corpse with her needle gun. I'm contemplating how I'm going to take down the Big Daddy. I figure I'll freeze it with Winterblast.wait, didn't I mention? The people of Rapture created Plasmids, a gene enhancing chemical that gives you odd powers. I' ve been using them to help survive in this place. So far, I've been able to collect Electrobolt, which hurls a burst of lightning from my hand, and incinerate, which allows me to shoot a ball of molten flame.
Bioshock [11-26-2008]

I like the lazaretto house, what kind of saws did they use to take off people's limbs? But anyway, I really dislike how they're going to tear it down. It's such an important part of history! Many people were saved there, some of them our ancestors. Well, not me, I'm from Kenya, but you know what I mean. Good luck saving it, you'll be in my thoughts.
Gerald, Kenya [11-26-2008]

I really want to go to the Lazaretto, cuz I'm really into stuff like that. Just like the other day, when I was playing Dungeons and Dragons, I was thinking about this place. I also got reminded when I was playing Runescape. There was a character named Lazaretto. We're friends now so yeah I really wanna go to the Lazaretto and take some pictures and learn stuff. I hope my school issues some field trips.
Matt King [11-26-2008]

Yeah I wonder too where the bones go. Do you think they ever ground them up for dogfood? I sure wouldn't want my dog eating some weird dead stuff.
Jack [11-26-2008]

The Lazaretto property is sadly unchanged since the building of the very large firehouse on the historically important land and waterfront property. The land behind the lazaretto building to the riverfront is littered with old decrepid boats 8-10 in number. I can see no improvement in the overall condition of the grounds since the firehouse opened with the exception of the use of one small building on the property to store the spare trophies won by the essington firehouse in the past. It appears that according to the agreement the land was supposed to be cared for by the township this is not happening. I t is shameful
anonymous, essington, pa [11-25-2008]

Pathogens found a haven in the rapidly growing field of transportation as the world developed. Many diseases-such as yellow fever in Philadelphia and Black Death in Italy-reached their peaks because of trade and immigration. In a way, the Lazaretto protected virgin populations in Philadelphia from foreign germs and viruses. Don't you think we should preserve this valuable link to our past?
Sarah, Philadelphia [11-25-2008]

I think it is a horrendous thought to tear down a complex so rich in our country's history. The hospital not only tells us about immigration in New World, but also about the roots of modern day quarantine. No historical site should be demolished. We MUST preserve our records of our past, and therefore protect the Lazaretto.
Sarah, Philadelphia [11-25-2008]

This place is great. Where did they put the dismembered arms and legs? How about bones?
anonymous [11-25-2008]

When it was owned privately there actually was a museum inside and people could come in and see it. Sadly, that is no more. The stabilization money went towards a new roof, which is key to preserving a building, and they plexiglassed over all the windows. Keeps the building safe but makes it hard for me to get in...
Rob, Philadelphia [11-21-2008]

i want to go in the lazaretto so so bad i wish they gave tours inside the lazaretto!
Sam [11-14-2008]

i think they should clean up the lazaretto so pelpoe can go in and see the history of it.
kayla [11-12-2008]

I lived in Essington for 12 years and my parents still live there. Essington is the forgotten town of Delaware County. Tell someone you live in Essington and their response is "where is that"? But you tell them it's where the Lagoon is and they immediately know what you are talking about. Come on people, do you really want your town to be famous for its bars and nothing else?! I for one do not. As someone who is working on her Masters in Archaeology I believe it is vital to protect and preserve historical landmarks like Lazaretto.
anonymous, Portales, NM originally Essington PA [07-26-2008]

Could you please tell me if they have started to restore the Lazaretto yet? I would love to know when it is completed and open for visitors. It looks like it will be a very interesting site.
Maryann Lindley, Phila., Pa [07-14-2008]

Save Lazaretto. There are not too many historic places left.
anonymous [06-24-2008]

I'm a decendant of Capt. John C. Karr(Rev.War & War of 1812) b. Tinicmn, Bucks Co., Pa, 1758- Captain, John C. Karr's Company 2 NJ Militia. I'd love to get out to Bucks County once in my life, and hope to see a few historic sites if any from revolutionary times. I hope they don't build too close to the old building. Good Luck, Phil from Nebraska
Phil Porter, Lincoln, NEBRASKA [06-18-2008]

Long, long ago on an island in the middle of the Delaware River, known as Tinicum Island, there lived a creature, local residents knew only through legends, called a 'chipdog'. Now just what a chipdog might be is the subject of much debate, but legends handed down, some from the Lenni-Lenape indians, state that chipdogs were some large species of chipmunk or prairie dog, or maybe both together! But in the sleepy little town of Shady Chestnut Grove on the island, many of the older residents will tell you that a chipdog is some prehistoric throw back of a prairie, and somehow enter breed with chipmunks! They really don't know, however, but they sure do love to have something to say. The Lenape legends also tell us that the chipdog creature of their legend was revered as a god, for legend has it that the very first chipdogs were seen coming out of a burning teepee, once occupied by one of their chiefs who burnt to death inside! (Some lines from my book, " Delmar Nuttchester's Christmas Revelation"
Lawrence Falzitto, Las Cruces, NM [06-17-2008]

I viewed with interest your debate over the Lazaretto. My ancestor, Joran Kyn, settled in Tinicum along with Johan Printz. I understand the need for progress but as a history buff it is hard to see something like this destroyed or marred. I hope that you can find some compromise that works for everyone. Good luck.
William Johnson, Minneapolis, Minnesota [06-07-2008]

I often thought that Tinicum Township didn't have the means to renew this historic property....I lived in the vacinity for more than 40 years and the property is not kept up to minimum standards. What about the Historical society in Pennsylvanina getting close to this site and being back the are as it once was...Isn't history worth the small price? I think so...
Harry Carey, Florida [05-27-2008]

Jonathan Williams [04-17-2008]

Growing up in nearby Folcroft in the 1950's, for a few years my family kept a small pleasure boat at a nearby marina just north of the Lazaretto. The site was then part of the Phila. Seaplane Base. I do, however, recall my father explaining that the big 'colonial-plantation' style building had been used as a quarantine station from the Revolutionary period through the turn of the 20th Century. Those of us who endured childhood measles, mumps, and chicken pox in the 50's, knew all too well what the concept of 'quarantine' was. Congratulations on your efforts to preserve a landmark which was more vital to the early history of Philadelphia and the Delaware than most people are aware of.
anonymous [03-05-2008]

I am so pleased this historical part of our country has been "saved" ..keep up the great work ..i have visited and bringing visitors in order to create interest.
anonymous, Glenolden PA [10-05-2007]

In closing, I agree with Commissioner Messina's July 10, 2007 Letter; that is unless a petty personal attack occurs such as "resident who hates tree hugers, tinicum twp" exhibited in his response. DONE. The state-of-the-art firestation is being constructed with a focus to make the Lazzerto a better place. I trust that the Commissioners and Preservation Committee, jointly now have the focus in the right direction. May god bless all involved in this massive project and further success be achieved in the future.
Jack Joseph, Harrisburg, Pa [09-26-2007]

This is for "Attn: resident who hates tree hugers, tinicum Twp" - Who said anything about trees??? These comments are about preserving The Lazaretto and apparently, YOU CARE, otherwise you wouldnt have addrssed me in your response. Thanks. Glad I got your attention; my comments addressed areas that were probaly not considered by the Preservation Committee. Your gutless comment just proves how ignorant and self serving you are because you dont even have the guts to identify yourself (just another gutless worm coming out of the swamp). Dont like my comments? Stop reading them! Intellectual people know that if you don't put your name to a thought, comment, opinion etc ... in any written forum; its not worth the paper it is written on and that does apply to the internet as well. Regarding me shutting up ... I wouldnt put any money on that ... Last I checked, this a "Share Your Thoughts Page" for any AMERICAN to participate in. Also, this is still the good ol USA and free speech hasnt been abolished. In reference to the response time you personally witnessed, one thing that needs to considered regarding this is that the fire companies are still in their OLD stations in their respective towns (ie Essington @ 3rd St & Lester @ 4th St), in other words, they are "not" in the new station yet, so how can you account for their response time but I am glad that they are STILL expeditious. I, too, am glad the fire companies have their new station ... but its going to come at a "higher cost" than the new stations worth to every resident in Tinicum, one day or another ... however your ridiculous but worthless opinion is duly noted. Wishing the best to everyone in Tinicum with this decision.
Jack Joseph, Harrisburg, Pa (formerly of Tinicum) [09-25-2007]

I just wanted to say that no one even cares about the Lazaretto it looks like crap and it does no good to us now and no one even had anything to say about it till they wanted the fire house there. im glad the fire house is going there. and if you are wondering about the response time they drive past my house in under 3 minutes after the siren goes off. so congrats to our firemen and i dislike you tree hugers.NO ONE CARES ABOUT THE Lazaretto AND THAT IS THE END OF IT AND JACK JOSEPH STOP TALKING NO ONE CARES WHAT YOU HAVE TO SAY. Thank you
resident who hates tree hugers, tinicum Twp. [09-14-2007]

The Lazaretto is in Essington, PA. Essington needs to disassociate itself from Tinicum Township and become it's own borough to take care of their residents since the Tinicum Township officials are clearly ill-equiped to represent the community of Essington. Again, the Lazaretto is in ESSINGTON.
anonymous, Essington, PA [08-27-2007]

As anyone been by to see what's going on there lately? It's a disgrace! You can't even see the Lazaretto anymore, and the way they are building up the groud on the site, when it rains, the water is going to cause flooding in the entire neighborhood. That is the ugliest building ever! How much in hard earned and paid taxed dollars went into this? Tear it down! It was a bad idea from the outset! What the hell is wrong with Tinicum Township officials? It's clearly evident there are things going on here that shouldn't be and are illegal. All action needs to cease and a full investigation needs to be conducted before this goes any further.
anonymous, Essington, PA [08-27-2007]

It would be a crime to destroy such a significant piece of history! Many of my family members still reside in Lester and I feel very much apart of this community. But more importantly how can we afford to lose or compromise this site. Every effort should be made by Tinicum Township to protect our history not destroy it.
Bob Ramos, Havertown, PA [08-27-2007]

A bone has been found near the Lazaretto/firehouse dig site area. It appears to possibly be a knee bone -cut- with gashes on was discovered just the other day. If anyone who is an archeologist is interested you may want to contact further authorities before the area is covered up.
anonymous [08-17-2007]

I have lived in the area for almost 5 years. I have in Delaware Co. all my life. I never knew what the Lazaretto building was until today. I just thought it was part of the sea plane base. We have too much history in the area to be bulldozing down building that should be preserved. This is the type of history that our children do not learn in school. Instead they are taught dates of wars, emporers names and useless info.Keep up the good work.
Cheryl, Woodlyn, PA [07-25-2007]

I am a true believer in preserving our heritage--never destroy what our ancestors built. The Johan Jacob Schweitzer family arrived at Lazaretto August 27, 1804 from Switzerland on the Rebecca ship. The family were hard workers, God-fearing people who believe our nation would provide religious and political freedom. We should preserve these building in honor of our ancestors. Thank you, PO
Pat Schettler Organsky, Plymouth Meeting via Knox [07-20-2007]

I have never been a resident of Tinicum Township but did grow up close by in what they now call Kingsessing. I cannot speak to the need for a firestation or the best location for one. I do want to ask is if before the graveyard was turned into a parking lot, was an archeological study done; were bodies examined and move to another location. I always regret that I was not in the area when Philadelphia General Hospital was demolished. Although CHOP is a great institution, couldn't a piece of PGH been preserved or are these things not considered important to school anymore. I am appalled by what my nephews know or rather don't know and they both graduated from one of the best private preparatory schools in the area. Dominic Roche: how dare someone with your name call the Lazaretto a "bucket of bricks". Where and when did your ancestors arrive here. My great-grandfather, James Barber, arrived from Limavadie (sp) County Derry in 1846. Now I think I know exactly where he landed. As a child, I had heard the term Lazaretto but did not understand until I stumbled on this web site. I have loved history since before event starting school and oh! yes I am a graduate of Philadelphia General Hospital Training School for Nurses. The Lazaretto belongs to the nation not Tinicum Twp. and is every bit as important as PGH.
Rosemary Kennedy, Frazer, PA [07-19-2007]

Wow - what passion! I found out about the Lazaretto only recently through a note in either Parade or a Historic Preservation magazine. Considering that I've been doing genealogical research for years and years, learning about Castle Garden as well as Ellis Island and Angel Island out west, it is incredible that I never heard or read in publications or on the computer about the Lazaretto. Presumably there are records attached to the place and that might be why I've not been able to find when and where my Pennsylvania ancestor arrived in this country. It would be nice if you-all can find a solution which will save and improve the place. I wish you luck in preserving this important part of American history.
Sharon Kane, Michigan [06-15-2007]

This site SHOULD be preserved and restored as a priceless historical landmark.
Sandra Pascale, East Norriton, PA [06-15-2007]

- a Historic house and land near Lazaretto - Historic House on Historic Land for sale near Lazaretto. Built in the late 1800's. Original staircase, hallway arch, ect. Formerly housed World War I era soldiers when the Lazaretto had reached capacity. Has been in the seller's family for generations. Prime location near the Delaware in Essington, Pa. Send all inquiries and interest to email:
For Sale, Essington, Pa [06-08-2007]

So -- what happened? Everyone gave up? The township won?
anonymous [05-28-2007]

I grew up in Essington and was once friends with Miss Mills. I can remember having sleep overs at her house when she lived with her father that must have been 26 years ago. It hurts me to see the state it is in now. Please I hope they are able to save it.
Lorre Gillespie, Phoenix, AZ [05-09-2007]

Don't let this diamond in the rough go. The history is to important not to preserve. Make it a place that all can enjoy as the Athletic Club of Philadelphia did in it's day. A leasure recreational site, would be a bonus to the properties and areas around it. Restore and maintain the property as a historical park/marina site. Remember a marina with a docking fee could bring in money to maintain the area. Work together now to get the firehouse built out on the main street but give the Lazaretto the preservation it is due. What are you guys waiting for? Pat Koloski - NJ
Pat Koloski, National Park, NJ [05-09-2007]

take a good look at the toilet of pennsylvnia..."philly". they totally crapped up the betsy ross house and other historical sites in philly by surrounding the place with unsightly housing, buildings and street trash. thanks to the firehouse politicians, you've manage to get another step closer to turning essington into chester/philly. the only way to see an unobstructed view of the lazaretto is to charter an airplane.
original swamp rat, essington, pa. [05-07-2007]

Please, please save, preserve and restore Lazaretto. There is so much history here, and the beginnings of American life for many immigrants. Mary Turton
Mary Turton, Firestone, Colorado [05-03-2007]

i lived near there
anita, ga atl [04-19-2007]

I'm glad to hear that the Lazaretto will be saved and is being given it's proper place in the history of Pennsylvania. My family lived in the housing project which stood on the west side of Rt291. We moved from "the project", as my parents called it, in 1953 when my parents bought a house in Crum Lynne. Years later the project was razed to make way for the athletic fields. I learned to fly at the Seaplane Base in 1967. My first solo was in Bob's J-3 Cub on a Friday and on Monday I raised my right hand and joined the Army. In the Army I learned to fly helicopters and flew them in Vietnam. After I got out of the Army in 1972 I continued to fly helicopters in the Philadelphia area. I visited Bob Mills several times over the years and flew from the Seaplane Base many times. I was struck by the history of the place and the size of the Lazaretto. I often wished Bob would have given me a tour of the building. I see in the pictures most of the old hangers are gone, they were a treasure trove of aviation history. I always got a kick out of Bob's office, never cleaned since 1900 or so it seemd. As to the fire house, I'm sure the area needs it. I'd feel worse if it was a Micky D's. I'm glad most of the property was saved it could have been a much worse outcome. Is there a mailing list for folks who are interested in the preservation of the property?
KEN MORRISON, West Chester Pa [04-06-2007]

well--just because the people of the firehouse deserve it still doesn't make the action of cheating a historic site from it's property right!---the firefighters deserve better---they deserve land without a controversy tied to it...they deserve a better site....unfortunatly their officials have convinced them that they deserve nothing better than a firestation built on land that has been swiped out of history's hand...
it will never be right anyway you slice it, e-town [03-06-2007]

Hi. I'm sure I am responding for the wrong reasons...that is I was searching for Aero Service of Philadelphia Aerial Views,and I got led to this site. The one shown here is GREAT! Could you or anyone else advise me as to where I could go/write to.. to obtain copies of their aerials?? And PS..I think this wonderful site should be preserved! Sincerely, Smokey
Smokey, New Jersey [03-02-2007]

Congratulations to all in favor of the State-of-the-Art Fire Station/Evacuation Center (Regardless of how my remarks are perceived, I AM IN FAVOR OF THE FACILITY, just not the location). To the Officers & Members of the Essington Fire Co on their 100th Anniversary ... and the upcoming Lester Fire Co's 98th Anniversary. Recently, I was graced with a few emails from Essington Members reminding me that it is in the best interest of those in favor of the Lazaretto Site to have the Fire Station "right in front" of the Lazaretto Site and what better to have close by, than a firehouse, in case a fire breaks out. Well, they may have a point, but I'm not sure if they either forgot or don't remember past history, ie .. lets not forget the how that concept worked for the Lester Industrial Park "aka Lester Piano Factory" in the '70's. Burnt to the ground AND with the fire house right across the street. All in all ... I wish the merger goes excellent for the Tinicum Township Fire Co, Station #48 and Best Wishes on your State-of-the-Art Facility ... NO OTHER COMMUNITY IN PA is more deserving of it.
Jack Joseph, Harrisburg, Pa [03-01-2007]

I applaud the efforts topreserve the Lazaretto. Myhometownis in south central Connecticut and is the oldest township in our state. We have a little pest house building dating from the nineteenth century thatis also imminently endangered. Do you know of any other historic pest houses in the U.S.that have survived?
Joel [01-30-2007]

Mr Roche ... No scare tactic was ever implied ... thats just your perception ... The points of emergency response time has always been a sore point for Tinicum. The average distance from Norwood to the closest point of Essington is at a minimum of five-5 minutes or eight-8 minutes to Lester and that DOESNT include the manning the apparatus. Tell us American Taxpayers again why is this land so vital for your evacuation center/fire house that will be near the banks of the Delaware River, when this Twp has so many options ... it's clear that the residents were NOT the first thought in the logistics of this decsion. There has been a few times in distant history that a train did block all four lanes in the twp. Stopping a train that long and discoupling is time consuming in an emergency situation, where clearly "SECONDS" do count in every situation and I wasnt aware Tinicum Police are EMS trained ... if so, thats great! I appreciate your views but all I am bringing to the table is this ... Did the residents have any say in where the firestation would be placed, since their tax dollars and support are required, not to mention state tax dollars, funding, grants, etc to allow both companies to do what they do. My points had little to nothing to do with the overall litigation and settlement agreement. Comments made by "Not the Final Word in Essington" is 110% correct ... Dominic check your facts first ... a township feasiblity study should have been conducted with all residents and then have the options put to a vote. Personally, I wish the best to all Tinicum Township Firefighters/Emt's in their new state-of-the-art structure, which is HIGHLY deserved, but for what price ... a lot more than what the twp will pay for this structure ... Enjoy the increase in twp tax dollars over the next decade to pay for the staggering fuel (Regular & Diesel) cost you will have to endure, as well. Yes sir, a Tinicum thing, indeed. As an American, US Veteran, PA Resident and a former resident of your historical community ... I have the right to voice my opinion and for the record, as time lingers on members of both companies will voice their opposition. A SUB STATION wouldnt hurt one bit. I am proud life member of Lester, which will change to life member, Tinicum Twp in the future. My email has consistently been provided and I NEVER received one opposing email from anyone on my points of view, not one, but I have received many favorable one's from residents and members of both companies. In closing, the welfare and protection of the Residents in Tinicum Township, especially my relatives that live there are my primary concern and as a firefighter should be yours, as well. Congratulations.
Jack Joseph, Harrisburg, Pa [01-30-2007]

Just to let all you "in the know" people be aware, while the firehouse mentality of Tinicum will never change - BOTH ESSINGTON AND LESTER FIREHOUSES HAVE ALWAYS BEEN ON THE SAME SIDE OF THE TRACKS -that is not a relevant point to anytning, especially the stupidity of destroying the Lazaretto property. But then again, eyesores are not something new to Tinicum, i.e., the Loop, Lou Turks, etc., etc. It's a Tinicum Thing!
One Who Knows, Formerly Tinicum [01-17-2007]

I am a direct descendant of Christopher and Israel Taylor, the first owners of this property, after the charter of the colony in Pennsylvania was issued. I'd be interested in corresponding with anyone who can provide some concise facts about this situation. Thank you.
Curtis J. Taylor, Ph.D., Iowa [01-17-2007]

Jan 11, 2007 Dear Sir/Madam: I just accepted a job at a company located in Tinicum Township (Keystone). I believe that there is always an historical tale everywhere and you have demonstrated that Tinicum is no exception. Some digging led me to your website. I applaud your efforts to preserve history. In England (where I am from) the preservation of history amounts to a state religion, and rightly so. Once you tear down history, you can never recover it. The history of the great and good is all very well but the really interesting history (for children, especially) is that of the ordinary people, those to whom we can relate. The Lazaretto is predominantly about the ordinary person's experience of coming to America, and of the role of disease control Immigration has been so vital to the American Story and the Lazaretto such an exemplary survivor, there is no question -it must be preserved for future generations. When you add to that that early would-be immigrants, whose stories ended tragically, are buried on the site, it becomes a moral imperative also. Are there records of who they were, perhaps in a Philadelphia archive? A few years ago I really enjoyed a trip to Ellis Island and wonder (although I'm sure this is not a novel idea) if something similar might be done for the Lazaretto, attracting summer visitors and school parties and documenting it's history. I also wonder if in terms of raising $ for the preservation (and restoration) efforts local businesses could be enlisted to help. Again, perhaps this is already underway. Although I have only just started with Keystone Mercy at Stevens Drive Tinicum, their core values include care of the poor (as those immigrants would have been) and their founder hailed from Dublin. What an interesting way to give back to the local Tinicum community in a way that supports the mission and values. I would like to know more about your efforts, and if there is a newsletter or email bulletin, be added to it. Please also advise of any volunteer or other contributions you might require so I can see if/where I might be able to help. Thanks and good luck with this great work! Fiona Wyszynski
Fiona Wyszynski, Work: Tinicum. Reside: Malvern. Live: US. Born: UK. [01-17-2007]

There is no way I'm going to let THIS Guy have the Last Word! Dominic--You don't have any idea what you are talking about. The historians are no longer fighting anybody... read the articles on this site! Historians are now working with the township as of November. So...the Lazaretto is in the hands of the township pretty much...the historians gave up the the township can do whatever it wants with the building...the township will not destroy the physical sense...but they may have destroyed it in another...about the firehouse location...your arguement is completely irelevant...obviously you have not studied the whole issue to the detail. P.S. Why are you so and your friends WON!???
Not the Final Word, Essington PA [01-09-2007]

First of all the Lazaretto is not torn down nor will it. The `Evil` Tinicum Twp Commissioners saved the old bucket of bricks from certain destruction in the best way they could have. You historians complaining about the preservation of the whole site should wake up. Money doesn't grow on trees and if I have to decide whether I want my taxes to support an eyesore or to bulldoze it I would prefer the dozer. Since my taxes are not in question and the site will be preserved you would think you people would find that amicable! Stop whining and be happy... History was preserved. As far as Mr. Joseph's scare tactic of Lester will be without Emergency service lets look at the facts. Lester and Essington fire company member live in Tinicum. Some Lester members live in Essington and vice versa. So the response time for a significant number would not even change. Some dont even live in Tinicum. The trains have been an issue for quite some time. Trains are irrelevant since should our ambulance be stopped by an extra long train that decides to block all 4 roads within the township (doubtful) then Norwood would come to our aid. Also, It should be pointed out that our police also respond to ambulance and fire calls and could take action too. I dont believe there is any record of a house burning down or someone dieing due to a train or the fact that a fireman/emt lived in Essington but responded to Lester. As a member of emergency services you know that and should be ashamed of yourself for trying to scare residents! And if holding up our new firehouse by litigation is your idea of supporting our fire company then we don't need your help! Dominic Roche
Dominic Roche, Tinicum [12-29-2006]

Tearing down Lazaretto would be like tearing down Ellis Island.
Peggy Combs, White Hall, Harford County, MD [12-27-2006]

I am so glad that some folks are working to preserve the Lazaretto. So much History is here in Delaware County and too many people only worry about today, not preserving what is so important to our Heritage.. Thanks to all working on the preservation.
Ethel, Norwood, Pa. [12-27-2006]

What exactly is the settlement agreement? Why is their no detail, no announcement, no transparency. It looks like the players decided to all call it a victory and go home. Makes me wonder how earnest the opposition effort really was. I am terribly disappointed and feel as if I've been taken for a ride - by all sides.
anonymous, - Waynesboro, VA [11-25-2006]

My husband descends from the Smiths, Taylors and other families who first settled this area (prior to the beginnings of Philadelphia) and later sold the land for the purpose of building the facility in 1799. His gr-gr-grandparents, Thomas Smith and Maria Mifflin, were married at the Lazaretto in May 1802. (It appears to be a second marriage for both bride and groom.) They had one child, Thomas Mifflin Smith, before Maria died in 1809 but the Hon. Thomas Smith continued to be actively involved in the area for many years. This location's historical significance dates way back into the 1600s - is the colonial aspect being taken into consideration?
Ellen Martin, Penn Yan, NY [11-25-2006]

What's going on here! Settlement? Hello!---I did not just get mad and waste my time and passion on this cause for nothing but a settlement!...I have one question to ask the "Lazaretto Task Force" and that is "what happened guys?" ...this settlement really dismantles the integrity of the cause and the people who have been fighting for it......I mean if you had any intention of settling...WHY did you create this site in the first place????!---Get people all upset from all over the country...just to could have done that privately....without the public input.... what's the point of a it all....? ---I mean you took the the case to a local county court and didn't go national with the case...what outcome do you expect to have?!----And let me ask you this...should I even believe what this site says....about the value beneath the ground and on the Lazaretto property...I mean- I would think that people who value the Lazaretto and believe it so badly that it should be preserved in it's entirety would not except a settlement which still involves the firecomplex on the "sacred" land....i equate this settlement with abandonment of the people who stood by this cause along with you....and you don't even make a statement to the people about it or warn about it on your site.....that's the very least you could have keep your public aware that a settlement was going to we could brace ourselves....but instead you...the task force decide it's acceptable to post a news article and nothing guys should be ashamed of yourselves for not fighting harder in the end when it counted could have gotten the nation together on this one....but instead you weakened and buckled under the pressure...and befriended those who once belittled may work out to your advantage...but...i think that the Lazaretto will never be complete...with the firecomplex on it's premises... ..I am deeply hurt by your choice....
Bitter and Abandoned, Essington Resident [11-17-2006]

"Settlement Agreement"??? Someone sold the farm on this one! Wish all in Lester the best luck in getting expeditious service ...
Jack Joseph, Harrisburg, Pa [11-13-2006]

All who can get there---according to the main page on this site--"the hearing will continue at 9am, November 8th in courtroom 15 of the Delaware County Courthouse. The public is invited."---that's this Wed. at 9am! All those in favor of the Lazaretto-- let's show our support!
THIS Wed. at 9am, Originally From Essington [11-06-2006]

What kind of people would want to tear down an important landmark with lots of History? My major is History and I hail from the North East where growing up I learned so much about our own history. Most of the time I would visit historical sites and Tinicum was one site I had the pleasure to see some time ago. It would be a shame to tear down this precious place. If I can volunteer or help in any way. Please let me know.
Hector Morales, Houston, TX [11-05-2006]

Thank you, Preservation Alliance for Greater Philadelphia, for keeping focus on the Lazaretto Site. Tinicum - Born and Raised, Lester, Pa; well I too fall into that same category, that is until my 18th Birthday, when I decided to serve my country. The Patriot Act highly endorses the standing up for preservation of NATIONAL HISTORICAL LANDMARKS, by doing so, does not make any one foolish, idiots or confused, just simply a true patriot. The funding assistance that needs recouped is the funding provided to the township commissioners to preserve the lazaretto land and site by Governor Rendell, after the funding assistance is audited and analyzed by the State Auditors Office. Being from Lester, one should be furious that "their first responders" will be a "minimum" of five-5 miles and/or 15-20 minutes away before first respndors may reach any given destination from the proposed new fire station. If by chance the Tinicum Department isnt available (trains transitting through their community, being coupled/ decoupled, blocking/congesting rail activity, etc); these twp residents may have to await on first responders assistance from Ridley/Prospect Park Fire Co's, etc. Hopefully residents in Lester are in good health and I pray no fires or accidents occur. Collectively, I, as a Pennsylvania Taxpayer, former Tinicum Resident and a proud life member of fire service in a twp which is a wealth of history that impacts ALL Americans have to wander why this site is of such of importance for this fire station/evacution center. Why not move a little farther down the road, either side shouldn't matter; such as: 1. The sight of the boatyard or; 2. Construct in front of the Walber's on the Delaware Parking Lot or; 3. On a section of Governor Printz Park, or; 4. In the vicinity of Johan Printz Mansion, etc ... The point here is "options for sites in this twp for a fire station/evacution center possess a mind-boggling and staggering potential". Makes anyone wander what is "really behind" this decision. Personally, I am torn over this project! 1. One for historical/preservation purposes and 2. The other being a life member of fire service, because I know that BOTH Essington and Lester Fire Companies are VERY deserving of a new fire station. Chief Lee (Essington) ( and Chief Berhauer (Lester) ( run professional fire companies without the pay and respect due them. The preservation issue of the Lazaretto Site has no bearing on the services, dedication and loyalty that each volunteer (and the rare paid one's) give to township residents. A new station is a MUST, but careful plans and strategies need be implemented. On a personal note, I have always known Commissioner Giancristoforo to be a fair, honest and ethical man, just as his late father was. The fact that the Delaware County Planning Commission opposes this site for the state-of-the-art fire station/ evacuation center; along with the legal actions currently in action; along and the twp solicitors resignation should hold weight. In closing, if you can't sign your name to your comments/feedback, show the value of thoughts/comments and/or feedback to hold "no value" period! I am very proud to offer my comments/feedback regarding a community that I hold near and dear to my heart, always have and always will.
Jack Joseph, Harrisburg, PA [10-28-2006]

I think that the Preservation Alliance for Greater Philadelphia Mr. Cotton and Mr. Gallery should worry about the historic sites in Philadelphia and not Delaware County. Tinicum saved this property and could of made the remaining portion other than the Lazaretto building some other commercial use (Hotel, Airport Parking, Night Club, etc). They are doing the right thing by using a portion of it for housing of our First Responders. Do they think it should be a Seaplane Base - I guess not. How about a marina - I guess not.Mr. Cotton, Mr. Gallery and Ms. Sell all should get a life and should of come up with the 3.1 million dollars to purchase the property. They didn't but would like to dictate the use of the property. Ms. Sell should be ashamed of herself representing Delaware County.Hopefully her career with Delaware County is short lived. We need planners with common sense. Hopefully the Township and Fireman will prevail and sue all the crazy's individually to recoup our tax dollars spent foolishly fighting these nuts.
Tinicum - Born and Raised, Lester, Pa. [10-27-2006]

In response to Anonymous, Ocean City, MD .... this historical uff, that you so kindly refer to below offers the following feedback to your response:

"Yes", the building is slightly neglected over the years BUT the Historical Articfacts have graciously been preserved by historians.

For the record, Residents of Tinicum, this is not solely a "township" concern, ... it is clearly a national concern, no and's if's or but's about it. The Lazaretto Site (Land and Structure) was in jeopardy, when I was a little boy in the '60's and '70's, but I was pleased to see that historical artifacts remain in great condition and I personally feel that twp commissioners should pay extra attention to the heritage and value that Tinicum Township clearly possesses, both in Essington & Lester.

Any tax-dollars provided to assist in the preservation of this endangered site, either locally, county, state or through federal government needs to be reassessed and all tax payers be assured that the current funding NOT used for preserving the Lazaretto Site be ethically recouped.

Interestingly, a mile up the road into Prospect Park, PA, you can note the detail, attention, and pride in maintaining the Tinicum Wildlife Reserve and Morton Homestead. Historical Preservation that went beyond what was expected. Due to outsourcing and I am very serious about the need of this state of the fire station, which should have been constructed in excess of twenty-20 years ago, Twp Officials have a moral responsiblity to ensure high emphasis is executed, protecting life, property and historical value for the residents throughout Tinicum.

On the other issue regarding mutual aid from companies such as Prospect Park and/or Ridley Park; well again, the residents of Tinicum Township life(s)/property(s) are now with an AVERAGE possible minimal response timeframe of twenty-20 to thirty-30 minutes until either one and/or both fire companies reaching the emergency site(s).

In retrospect, the cost could be the life(s) and/or property of any given township resident(s)/visitor(s)of either Lester and/or Essington.

The "Newly Merged" Tinicum Township Fire Co needs constructed on and/or around the town-boundaries of both Essington and Lester, specifically near the Tinicum Township Townhall, WITH a small substation on the opposite side of the tracks housing the eldest apparatus within the fleet and an EMS Unit ensuring "Mutual Aid" remains a priority, so that this Historical Community is protected, with pride that is invoked to this day.

The value of Tinicum Township to United States and the State of Pennsylvania History goes beyond any words that could be expressed here.

The site of the new fire station at 2nd & Wanamaker Streets in Essington, along the bank of the Delaware River clearly negates the need for an "evacuation center" concept as well as, breaking down the theory of mutual aid throughout the township, mainly in Lester, which offers provides professional emergency services for the Phila Airport.

Having the fire station at 2nd & Wanamaker Streets in Essington and providing mutual aid to the airport or within Lester, as needed, diminishes response time(s) to a minimum of twenty-20 minutes and lets not forget the potentiality of future issue(s) that will be required of the township commissioners at a later date ... and that may be the up-keep and maintenance, as well as, the ever presence of erratic fuel costs for each the state-of-art fire apparatus traveling approximately 5.0+ miles from Essington to area(s) in Lester or airport (especially since the majority of equipment owned by both fire companies, require "diesel fuel", which at the time of this feedback, ranges $3.25 a gallon and up.

Bottomline; the planning, study(s) and/or decision(s) of the new Tinicum Twp Fire Station #48 really needs reevaluation, with a proactive -vs a reactive conclusion; that may end up costing Residents of Tinicum thousands, if not millions of dollars, in order to rectify the conclusion over all.

As a Life Member of Lester Fire Co #25; I would proudly address these issues with any twp commissioner(s), if needed.

Very respectfully, John M. (Jack) Joseph
(717) 545-8000
Harrisburg, PA

John M, (Jack) Joseph, Harrisburg, Pa (US Govt Employee) formerly of Lester, PA [10-24-2006]

for all of those concerned, aka historical uffs, the lazaratto bldg was left in ruins many years ago. Nobody seemed to care when it was a boat yard and there was a couple hundred boats crammed in there. A fire occurred and the boat yard nearly burned down. How about when the property was purchased with the shear purpose to knock it to the ground. NOBODY CARED. Now all of a sudden the township saved the property, and is looking to put a joint fire station in the rear of the bldg, all of the historical peoples want to come out and fight to save the property. The property is not in danger. If anything it is a lot safer than it will ever be. The property is safe. The bldg is well protected. And from anything i've seen the property is being preserved for the first time that I have ever seen. Where were all you people before when the property was rotting away. Now all of a sudden everybody cares. Get a life. And for those who feel with Tinicum Township not being protected in case a fire breaks out on the other side of the tracks and a train happens to be blocking the way. Here is an interesting idea for you, it is called mutual aid. Any fire that occurs there are depts from different twps responding for assistance. What happens if the station is on the other side of the tracks and the station is over there. OH HELL we cant get there and neither can anybody else. At least in this case if we cant get there either prospect or ridley can as opposed to none of us at all. food for thought. one or none your choice.
anonymous, ocean city, md [10-21-2006]

Comments and Feedback to State Representives to our US President, requesting interaction since local government is pushing the firehouse agenda, even though county government disagrees with their decision. The residents of Lester should be outraged with this fire station project, surely they must know that the average response time to any emergency will be at a minimum of 5-10 minutes.
Dear Mr Swann,     As a future constituent, please review the following text and approach Governor Rendell on this issue, since he funded over five-5 million dollars of Pennsylvania Tax Dollars to preserve the National Historical Grounds and Site of the Lazaretto Station, which is now slated for a supposed "evacuation center" aka as a fire station, then review what people are saying to this horrendous decision by the Tinicum Township, PA Commissioners at The Lazaretto lies on the banks of the Delaware River just west of the Philadelphia Airport. It tells the story of quarantine and entry to America from 1643 to 1893. It also tells the story of early aviation and is vital piece of American Heritage. Your intervention is greatly appreciated.
Subject: RE: National Historical Preservation (Lazaretto Site in Tinicum Twp, Pa)
Dear Mr President and Mr Vice President,
I urge you to discuss the building of a "evacuation center" aka firehouse on the National Historical Grounds of the Lazaretto Site and view what people are saying to this horrendous decision by the Tinicum Township, PA Commissioners. The Lazaretto lies on the banks of the Delaware River just west of the Philadelphia Airport. It tells the story of quarantine and entry to America from 1643 to 1893. It also tells the story of early aviation.
The views and opinions of Americans can be reviewed at The building of an evacuation center shouldn't be located on a site that a potential of being flooded. This state of the art fire station should be located on the property approved and owned by Tinicum Township; Delaware County, PA.
    As a former Tinicum Resident, I served many years as a life-member (25+) with the Lester Fire Co. This site to build an "evacuation center" aka firehouse only serves those that are on the lower western side of the township and severely diminishes the lives and safety of residents in Lester, Pa (which is adjacent to the Philadelphia, Pa International Airport due to extended response times (5-10 minutes, at a minimum) and inadequate emergency services. The men and women of both Essington and Lester Fire Companies to merge into one and become "Tinicum Township Fire Co", is a great step forward but not at the expense of National Historical Preservation. Five-5 million dollars of Pennsylvania Tax Dollars was given to Tinicum Township Commissioners to preserve this very site and now have decided place a state of the art fire station on its grounds, even though Delaware County Officials have disapproved the implementation on this site. Tinicum Township, PA Commissioners need firmly and aggressively approached to rethink the site of their firehouse, so that ALL of Tinicum (Essington & Lester) receive the emergency services, outright. Please read the contents of and meet with these township commissioners to protect a beautiful and historical landmark that impacts all Americans.
    Your attention and interaction is extremely imperative to preservation of the overall site.
The Honorable United States President George Bush
The Honorable United States Vice President Richard Cheney
The Honorable United States Senator Rick Santorum
The Honorable Pennsylvania Governor Edward Rendell
The Honorable Pennsylvania Senator Edwin Erickson
The Honorable Pennsylvania Representative Ron Raymond
Jack Joseph, Harrisburg, Dauphin County, PA [10-08-2006]

My friend and I stumbled upon the Lazaretto back in March. I couldn't believe such a historic landmark was left to ruin, especially considering how close it is to Philadelphia and it's current good condition. It's a real shame people can't appreciate it and no one was able to purchase the land before the idiots in the government got their greedy paws on it. I'm sorry to hear that it's going. And yes, the firehouse there is a stupid idea. But no one ever said politicians are smart.
Mw, Philadelphia, Pa. [09-26-2006]

Save the Lazaretto in it's entirety.-- According to certain sources, the historians are still working on saving the Lazaretto.---
cc, Of Essington, PA [09-26-2006]

IT is absolutely a disgrace that on a date when we mourn the loss of firefighters, policepersons and americans - Tinicum Commissioners, in their ever moronic minds, choose that date to desecrate the hallowed grounds that our forefathers fought so desperately to preserve and that those who we lose on 9-11 gave their lives for - you should hang you head in disgrace - but even that isn't low enough for where you belong.
anonymous [09-26-2006]

If you need volunteers on a dig.Contact me.
Bill Young, Lester,PA. [09-21-2006]

We have started a My Space group to raise awareness and create open discussion of The Lazaretto and ALL historic sites. We are NOT affiliated with The Lazaretto or Tinicum Township. We simply wish to support a historic site that we love. Feel free to join, but NO SPAMMERS or FLAMING. You WILL be booted. Thank you.
Redd Hott Artwork, formerally of Essington [09-19-2006]

While I feel indepted to Tinicum for managing to buy the Lazaretto property, I feel that they are now going to misuse the land and ruin their ONE great claim to fame. It was my fear from the start. Tinicum residents have so little in which to take REAL pride... An evac center would be better suited closer to where they initially begun construction. They built hotels on the marsh, why is the evac center suddenly so different? If it was because they had to use the evac center as a way to wrangle the funds from the state in order to buy the Lazaretto property, then why can they not now simply claim the Lazeretto's historic significance and continue with their ORIGINAL build plans? How paradoxical it is that Tinicum should choose to break ground, forever altering this historic sight, on September 11th. We will now have TWO reasons to mourn this date.
Lisa, formerly of Essington, PA [09-08-2006]

Mr. Anonymous---You are completely wrong! You are the one who needs to awaken and stop defending people who wish to turn your beloved Tinicum into an industrial dump! Funny how this township needs a new firehouse (of course!)--oh, I'm sorry "evacuation center" to be located close to a major when planes crash in from the airport onto Tinicum property the evacuees can be rushed to the sinking and flooded major "evacuation center" for safe-keeping!??? Oh..yeah..I see...real safe...real smart. Let me put it this way folks...for those who don't read the news in it's entirety...we're not just talking about the "new little firehouse that could"...we're talking about a major portion of a crucial historic property going under the bulldozer for a major structure that could have been built somewhere closer to the airport---- So, congratulations Mr. Anonymous..In time your beloved Tinicum will surely be solidified as a permanently industrial town of no significant importance... as the first European settlement of Pennsylvania becomes nothing but a shred of concrete separating industry and highway from the airport...of course you won't have to worry about your taxes...because you won't be living won't even have to worry about fires or bingo because you will have given up your home for the sake of the airport and false promises-I think now of the Native Americans and perhaps how this is poetic justice! (Forget about the Lagoon Night club! ­I'm sure the sirens won't bother them-for.awhile.)...and in the Lazaretto will become your favorite will be nothing more---your house my friend, would surely be valued as you are currently---as nothing more than a commodity to be bought and sold with no regard to your personal history or attachment. because they sold you out.they decided you were no longer apart of their fact you were in their way..... So--I suggest if you love your town-- the town of Tinicum-(it is history)-- as much as I do...and enjoy whatever benefits it may bring you to live there...then I would not recommend supporting THOSE who you "to name a few" because they would easily take the rug which you sit on out from under you if they thought it would bring them an easy and quick profit---Look --around you---look at the town you live in and it's condition in recent times---if your favorite town politicians had your best interests in mind WOULD you be living with a polluting CHEMICAL FACTORY in your town (which they approved), would you have JETS flying directly over your head---TAKE a look at your town's economy and tell me which direction you would like to go in...imagine for a moment...a town that is pleasant to visit, admired and protected.........that is what your town could be. -----YOU have the choice to better your situation.and support others who truly believe in your potential (the town potential).will you push the people (preservationists, historians, etc.) who are trying to help you- away.? Think about it. if you love the town and the firehouse so much.. then you should love the Lazaretto too because they are BOTH apart of Tinicum. Therefore you should want what's best for the Lazaretto as well and want to preserve it in it's entirety and not compromise it's property in any form.
So, nothing is Sacred, hugh?!, Essington, PA [08-31-2006]

I think all you people that are fighting to keep the firehouse from being built are crazy morons..If it weren't for the township commissioners Messina, Giancristoforo to name a few The Lazaretto and the land it sits on would have been destroyed a long time ago.. Wake up people.. This township need a new firehouse and this properity is the best place for it..
anonymous, Essington [08-29-2006]

9/11 - groundbreaking day for the new Tinicum Bingo Hall -does that date ring a bell? What a shame for the people of Pennsylvania but then again -with Tinicum politics - and fire-litics (one and the same)- when you deal with morons that's what you get - moronic decisions - only this one didn't take a plane to cause the destruction.
Seriously but not surprisingly sad -, Pennsylvania [08-29-2006]

AFTER Reading about what the officials will be doing Sept. 11-groundbreaking! --We NEED to get out the WORD about the LAZARETTO. Right away---RIGHT NOW. We NOW have no time to lose--we must make this a state and NATIONAL ISSUE! CALL your friends, CALL the PRESS- We have no choice now but to get everyone and anyone out and PROSTESTING! THis is the TIME! WE need to stand up and stop this! THiS IS PENNSYLVANIA'S great piece of history ABOUT to be LOST to what?! We need to get people up in arms --outraged--about this---because it is important--it represents so much more--in a sense a piece of our country about to be LOST! I know who i will be contacting! Anyone who wants to join me or has some information for me- feel free to contact my email! LET's get to WORK---
cj, from Essington [08-27-2006]

---this thing about the firehouse is simply beyond ridiculous! They are puting the station near a RIVER!??? This is crazy! With the recent hurricane like storms that have been flooding areas all over the country you would think someone would grow a brain! I say we protest! What is happening is not only wrong but also just plain dumb! I'm ready to protest now!
the officials are crazy!, pa [08-27-2006]

the lazaretto belongs to we the people. it is a national resource and like our natural resources should not be up for bid, sold to be destroyed, or lost to our grandchildren. it is within the power of the people of tinicum who elected the officials to take a stand like the people of ardmore did to stop eminent domain from ruining a downtown area that was just recently--but inconveniently--designated as an historic district. perhaps eminent domain can be used for public good, not private gain, in tinicum. i for one would support a $10 preservation tax per household in delaware county and perhaps acquire matching state or federal funds for use in preservation of historic structures and restoration where needed. i would suggest the same for montgomery county where several historic buildings stand to be demolished every year-- creating a private gain on the back of a public loss. where is the line to be drawn? if the pews or the drexels or some of the other local financial giants decided they wanted a nice big bell for the top of their favorite church, how much would we let the liberty bell be sold for? the destruction of our history must stop. the reminders of why this country was built and what it stood for cannot disappear from our eyes or we may soon find that we can't find them in our hearts either any longer. what do you think?
JEAN L., delaware county, pa [08-22-2006]

Haha, if you goto links and check the discussion at Phillyblog, thats me posting! Yes I've been in the Lazaretto. Quite an amazing, yet VERY scary, experience.
Rob, Prospect Park [08-22-2006]

AS a child my family were friends of the mills family. I remember playing in the building and around the seplanes. Happy to hear there plans to save the place.
ernie miekley, va beach va [08-07-2006]

MEssina, Giancristoforo, etc. same names, same firehouse mentality - people should not waste their time and/or breath in trying to save this property - these morons are going to do what they want, makes no matter - the only thing that changes in Tinicum is the number of years people are stuck there - dang the history, full firehouse ahead!
anonymous, Thankfully no longer in Tinicum [07-29-2006]

When the few people on this page claim that outsiders don't understand "the ways of the township" or "the ways of the residents" and that people in the town really would rather have a firestation built than a historic building completely preserved in it's entirety---they are greatly misrepresenting the local people and community. Being a resident of this town for most of my life, my family having been here for generations and apart of the community and living so close, in such relationship to the Lazaretto I can say that those statements don't represent my thinking and probably don't represent those in the town that are aware of the historic significance of the Lazaretto. It may be those individuals who are unaware of the Lazaretto's importance who need to be educated. If you are interested in learning more about the Lazaretto and the town it resides in go to, click on Texts, then click History of Delaware County, Pennsylvania, scroll down to Township of Tinicum and then click, then turn to page 284 to learn a little about the Quarantine Station The local talk of the town: July 23, 2006 Something the national public should be aware of: From personal knowledge, I know there exist different factions within this township-those who want to develop the township's long term potential-making it a better, a more cultural oriented place to live and-- those who do not. I have also heard various rumors about the Lazaretto lately---one involves the wrong roof being put on it (as in not authentic type materials)- the Tinicum Township politicians' effort to "revitalize". A few people were said to be spotted on the Lazaretto grounds recently ­unsure of their position-perhaps protestors---I'm not sure. Another report I have heard suggests that groundbreaking is eminent and one way of putting a halt to it might involve placing an injunction to prevent against any tampering with any building or structure apart of the original Lazaretto. The injunction could be used if an organization, or a group of people or person orders it. I have heard that an injunction may be the real effective way of handling this situation with the township. If the residents or local supporters of the Lazaretto- not the local town politicians - had greater support, nationally, that could really make a difference. The Lazaretto and the town it resides in is full of history, full of potential for everyone-- if people could be made to see the importance, as well as the economic advantage-it is in everyone's best interest!
Help Us,, Born&Raised in Essington, PA [07-24-2006]

What's the update on the lazaretto this summer? Any way for me to help?
Donald Smith, Philadelphia [07-18-2006]

It was a pleasure to find this site devoted to the Lazaretto. I found out about the area in 1997 when I was staying at a local hotel and went out for a walk. I just had a chance to visit Essington this last week, and was glad to see that the building looked liked it was beeing cared for. The aviation history of the site is what I have been most interested in. Is there a plan to keep one of the old hangars? This building will, in time, be the focal point for your whole town. Thanks for your efforts. - Hal Holt
Hal Holt, Sandisfield, MA [07-18-2006]

I am embarrassed to admit that I was born and raised 35 miles away from this historic site and never knew of its existence. Isn't there a 'Lee Iacocca' out there somewhere who would take on this project and do the marvelous job that was done on Ellis Island?
Toni C. Collins, Chiefland, Florida, USA [07-12-2006]

Hopefully some organization can mobolize sufficient support that the area can be saved as a National Historic property. Can someone get the subject on 60 Minutes or CBSs Sunday Morning?
David G. Smith, Church Hill, MD [07-12-2006]

One of my concerns as a professional archivist and Civil War historian is the disturbing recent trend of historical sites and buildings across the nation. I do understand that sometimes modern needs outweigh historical/preservation ones but otherwise it is my belief that our cultural treasures and history site must be preserved whenever possible. The Lazaretto site deserves preservation. How anyone even consider replacing such a fine national site, a symbolic example of America's cultural heritage, with a firestateion?
Prof. Ervin Jordan Jr., University of Virginia [07-12-2006]

The Lazaretto should be considered a national treasure,not only the buildings but the land it sits on.Under this land is three hundred years of history,from the Swedish occupation of the 1640s to the First World War,plus the possible graves of countless immigrents.This land and the buildings should be held intact.This site could become the Phiadelphia areas own Ellis Island where possibly tens of thousands of people would visit yearly.
Norman T. Glass, Glenmoore Pa. [07-10-2006]

Remember the Bi-Centennial - Tinicum Township was so outraged that the Pennsylovania Bi-Centennial Parade was not going through their Township which is where Pennsylvania began - just a short stretch down the beach from the Lazaretto. The howls went on for months! How quickly we forget! I have many fond memories myself of the Lazaretto and it's history. But again, as Tinicum has always been, don't look past the 420 Bridge - you might find out there is a world out there! Those of us who got out - did - Thankfully! I sincerely hope those who are fighting to preserve this space win - it would truly be a shame to see another landmark bite the dust. Besides, why would someone build an "evacuation" center on the river? Plan on having a swimming party? Tinicum, especially Essington, has always been the firehouse is gold and politically, the firehouse and the commissioners should all just meet at the same time - it's always been one and the same. Might someone do a comprehensive report on when, if ever, were Tinicum residents evacuated. Living there for 15 years and family there for over 75 years, never saw it happen. If Delaware County is evacuated - they certainly aren't going to Tinicum! Please look past your noses and preserve this property - not your own personal "good" intentions.
A Happy Ex-Tinicum Resident [07-03-2006]

Please don't build a fire staion on this site! The historic importance of this structure is just as important as any other property in Philadelphia's history and should not be bulldosed ! FIND ANOTHER PLACE TO DO IT! Philadelphia should have this site restored. ASAP!
anonymous [06-26-2006]

This is an important part of our history. Are any records of imigrants passing through here available? I never knew of this place and I am sure many other had no knowledge of Lazaretto. I would like to see it restored. It should be a Federal Project since many of the people settled all over United States.
anonymous [06-26-2006]

It has been pointed out by several people that "outsiders", that is, non-residents of Tinicum Township, have no business interferring in what they consider to be purely a township matter. I respond to this with three points:

  1. As far back as 1999, interested historians and preservationists from the REGION were invited and encouraged by township officials to participate in exploring ways to save and restore the Lazaretto site. For reasons not entirely clear to me, that collaboration was essentially scrapped by the township about 18 months ago. The point remains, however, that the TOWNSHIP initially encouraged and welcomed participation by individuals and organizations from outside its boundaries.
  2. While Tinicum Township will be investing a significant amount of its funds into the Lazaretto site and a new firehouse complex, it is important to note that to date the majority of the money - $5.5 million - has come from the STATE OF PENNSYLVANIA, and therefore all Pennsylvania taxpayers have a stake in the Lazaretto site.
  3. The Lazaretto site is of NATIONAL, if not international, historic and cultural significance. This is an instance in which, one could argue, local preferences are transcended by the general public's interests in a site where our collective heritage is embodied. The City of Philadelphia, for example, owns Independence Hall, but we certainly wouldn't allow the city to build a structure obscuring the public's view of that landmark. Owning a site as significant as The Lazaretto should be considered a "public trust", not just a convenient place to plop a firehouse/rental facility that was initially designed for another site.
I ask Tinicum Township to postpone construction of the firehouse complex for, say, six months and re-open good-faith communication and collaboration with individuals and organizations in the political, historical, preservation, and funding sectors to find win/win solutions that maximize the Lazaretto's heritage potential AND provide Tinicum Township with the necessary level of fire protection for its citizens.
J. Randall Cotton, Wallingford, PA [06-23-2006]

we restore historic properties. we have a series of properties on the National Register. i would be interested in viewing the Lazaretto Station. i would like to view the interior of each building to ascertain the conditions. if satisfactory, then we may be interested in privately restoring the site. we will comply with Department of Interior Guidelines for the restoration of historic properties. we have funding available if we elect to proceed. we are capable of restoring and preserving the site. we are able to give prompt evaluations and decisions. of course, we would need Township approval. while we may be ready, willing and able to act to preserve the site, we do not want to waste our time if the Township is committed to proceed in another directions. however, we do present another option for the consideration of all concerned parties. i can be reached at 215 7577162. Tom Crawford
tom crawford, 1361 taylor drive langhorne pa 19047 [06-22-2006]

My Irish ancestors probably landed at this site in 1871 when they first set foot on American shores. I learned about Lazaretto for the first time today when I read David Barnes' commentary in the Phila. Inquirer. The potential here must not be lost to future generations. What can we do to help?
Lyn M. Hackenberg, Ambler, Pennsylvania [06-22-2006]

Ignorance is bliss. The egos of the commissioners are as big as that firehouse. The Lazaretto isn't just a building, it's the whole damn site. Professionals should be handling this. Not some uneducated politicians.
anonymous, Tinicum Township [06-21-2006]

This property was privately owned and operated. It was a marina & a seaplane base and looked like a dump at times. It has changed hands several times and recently went up for sale. The township bought the property to preserve the building and the history. The land consists of 10 acres and the new building will only be on a portion of the land at the opposite end of the property.
anonymous [06-20-2006]

The Lazaretto is amazing. I didn't realize what I have in my backyard before happening upon this website. We should make a big museum and let people picnic here, it's right on the water. Let's stop the plans now and take some time to think about this. Just my thoughts.
anonymous, Essington, PA [06-20-2006]

I can not believe the comments on this page. This Township saved this building from complete destruction! I see that 99% of you do not even live here. Are any of you going to help my township pay our debt back? So what if you will not be able to see this building from the street. So what if there is a new firehouse put up in the existing parking lot. The end result is what should matter... For all of you that don't quite understand, the Lazaretto will still be standing..
A Proud Resident Of Essington, Essington [06-19-2006]

Tinicum Township has recieved and opened bids for the firehouse project that will consume a majority of the site. We can assume that the project will be awarded soon. The Township has promised a feasibility study on the remaining portion of the property. Preservation efforts may soon have to shift to the building and waterfront alone. The people of Tinicum must not let the Lazaretto die behind the firehouse. There's still a lot to save.
Were Watching, Essington, PA [06-15-2006]

Has anyone gone to the Governor about this yet? I am just fed up with one historical site after another being destroyed for the path of new development. This also should be brought to the attention of one of the local news channels to get more exposure.
Ted Beres, Philadelphia PA [06-15-2006]

A systematic archeological survey should be completed across all open (not built on) ground within the Lazaretto property, to make a preliminary determination of what cultural resources are in fact present at the location. As stated by others on this and other websites, a high potential exists for significant archeological remains related to prehistoric Native American occupations, the Nya Göteborg (a.k.a. Printzhof) Swedish settlement dated 1643 to 1655, and those buildings and features (including an unknown number of burials) from the Lazaretto period itself (1799 to 1890s). Based on these preliminary results, archeological evaluation and, in all likelihood, data recovery excavation of identified significant resources should be completed. Thousands upon thousands of archeological sites across the country have been destroyed by development over the years without even the most basic archeological investigation, and it's imperative that this fate not be allowed to occur here, at what could be one of the most important archeological and historic sites in Pennsylvania and the U. S. I think it would be unconscionable for such development to be permitted at the Lazaretto.
Tod Benedict, West Chester, PA [06-15-2006]

if you people take a good look both fire companies are already on one side of the tracks!
anonymous [06-12-2006]

Oh, God, please don't destroy this important part of our history. Isn't the state of the world bad enough, without having to "pave paradise, and put up a parking lot." You have got to be kidding! PLEASE DON'T DO IT!
L. Pinto, Nantucket, MA [06-07-2006]

I applauded your efforts in trying to save an important part of our nation's history.
Ed Grell [06-01-2006]

If we continue to move along the course of deconstruction and construction we will be able to erase ALL history from our sight and perhaps our lives. It is comforting to know that townships in the Delaware Valley are willing to fight to "preserve" a historical site from development, only to later develop it for their own use. Let's face it the past is the past - we NEED to develop and grow - what could the past possibly provide for the future - themeparks, strip malls, housing, and specialized facilities are what we want to leave for future generations. After all this is America, home of the brave, the free, the greedy, and the complacent. With development on the rise we should next be considering the demolishion of other obvious "unimportant" landmarks like Independence Hall, Franklin Court, Valley Forge, and Gettysburg. While I greatly appreciate the work of fire fighters, I also value the need to preserve history - How lucky we are to have images and sights available for visitors to learn about the history of fire fighting and the man who began it all. How grateful is the city of Philadelphia and the surrounding suburbs that people come from all over the world to see the birthplace of Liberty and Freedom. There is no greater tragedy than to ignore and destroy - we are a nation made up of a unique brand of history. WE can not rewrite it, WE should not erase it for it defines who we are by telling the story of those who braved difficult times and sacrificed so much just to be called AMERICANS!
Winston R., Media, PA [05-24-2006]

Please save the Lazaretto! I heard about this on WHYY and think it would be a TRAGEDY to let this historic site go to waste. It would also be a shame since I know of many people who would go to visit this landmark and spend money doing so!
anonymous [05-24-2006]

Why can't they put the Fire Station a half of a mile down the road where they originally planned to put it and where they already had spent close to a million dollars in site preparation. It would also be more geographically centered in the township and the tax payers' money they already spent on the site wouldn't go to waist.
anonymous, Essington [05-23-2006]

I think that this site is beautiful. Please do not ever let private investors get a hold of it. I can almost envision a hundred townhouses in its stead. What a prize piece of Delaware County history.
Linda E. Lynch, Media, PA [05-20-2006]

I am in favor of restoring and maintaining total property as a historic site. I starting visiting this site in 1948.
Carl Clauss, Wallingford, PA [05-17-2006]

Destroying this important historic site would be a tragedy! Please maintain/restore it so that we may all benefit from the history and the lessons that this location has to teach. Fire stations and parking lots can be build elsewhere!
anonymous, East Lansing, Michigan [05-17-2006]

Surely a site as historically significant as the Lazaretto screams for preservation. Some very historical things occured here. It ranks up there with the Hagley Museum and close behind Independence Hall. Please don't destroy it.
J.T. Garner, Winchester, VA [05-17-2006]

"Don't it always seem to go, That you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone They paved Paradise, Put up a parking lot. These lines from the 1960's hit say it all in the context of the Lazaretto proposals.
Charles Free, Pennington, New Jersey [05-08-2006]

obviously no consideration to historical importance or integrity was taken in the thought for these plans, nor in the decision to go through with them. sometimes people have no respect or appreciation for history, what it means, it's importance, and even the people who today work very hard to try and preserve its integrity. it's ashame.
ene powell, philadelphia, pa [05-07-2006]

Tinicum Township officials should be commended for purchasing the Lazaretto and preventing its demolition by the previous owner. However, they need to recognize the Lazaretto's national significance in the early years of this nation. Constructing a large fire house and evacuation center right next to it would prevent its being seen from a public road and destroy its setting. Future funding for its preservation would be severely limited because of the fire house. I'm sure there are other locations for the fire house, but there is only one Lazaretto. The state funding for the fire house could be allocated for another location, if those who allocated the funding really understood the historical significance of the Lazaretto. Township officials, please take a "time out" on this and reconsider what you're doing!
Tom Shaffer, Swarthmore PA [05-04-2006]

The Lazaretto is possibly the most significant site in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Building a fire station, community hall/evacuation center, and parking lot on the site of the Lazaretto is simply irresponsible.
Christine Miller, Philadelphia, PA [05-04-2006]

When you have an opportunity to be in and around this impressive building and site, you will certainly feel shocked and dismayed that the Township feels it is acceptable to overshadow and diminish what the Lazaretto has to offer to the community (and to the nation). The character and history of this site are palpable and undeniable. These qualities lend themselves so easily to reuse into a place that can be enjoyed and appreciated. I do not deny the need for protecting the safety of the local residents but I am nothing but disappointed that this project cannot be completed without destroying the community's past.
Jessica, Massachusetts [05-04-2006]

I've read several articles on this topic and I still can't get over the fact that the Fire Companies and the Township officials have sold everyone on the term "Evacuation Center". Everyone please wake up! The term "Evacuation Center" was concocted by the Township Manager to help get the funding from the state. Let's call it what it is, a Banquet Facility. Maybe I'm wrong, but they sure picked out some nice tile, rugs and chandeliers for the place. Let's not forget to mention the Bar Area and the Caterer they already have picked out to run the place.
anonymous [05-04-2006]

i think my grandfather might have entered america there where are the records how can i research??the year 1898
ZACNIEWSKI, roswell,nm [05-03-2006]

The decision to build on this site is a matter of personal preference and has nothing to do with the logistics of protecting residents, businesses, etc. Residents of Tinicum have always (as far as I can remember) argued over the two fire stations being in the center of their residential communities, I suppose they will now get their way, but at a historical cost of losing the Lazaretto Site. I know this, because I grew up in Tinicum (Lester) during the 60's & 70's, but left in the late 70's to serve in the US Navy, when I lived their I served with the Lester Fire Co, becoming a Life Member. But to build on this particular site truly makes no sense at all. The destruction of such a landmark will be devastating to Pennsylvania History and factually serve only those making the decision to embark on such a project. The preservation of Lazaretto Site should be deemed an historical site, period. Tinicum Twp, Delaware County, PA maintains a wealth of heritage and history, especially to the State of Pennsylvania. If the fire station is to be built there, then Tinicum Twp should be mandated to repay the $6+ Million provided them for the restoration and preservation of Lazaretto Site I personally cannot comprehend why this historical landmark needs sacrificed for a fire station, when putting a fire station there does not even serve 75% or more of the residents, businesses, etc. The Twp Commissioners should really reconsider their decision to build a fire station for the two companies being merged into one (Essington & Lester), I sincerely mean this because it will NOT serve the residents of Tinicum at all, based on two-2 predominant factors: 1. This new firestation will be located farthest away from 75% or greater of the residents, possibly five-5 or more miles, at the very least; 2. The new fire station will also be located behind railroad tracks, that has frequent rail-travel activity. The distance factor along with the potential of being disabled due to railroad action will severely hinder response times overall, dramatically impacting lives and property, which one would think is far more important to Twp Commissioners, Fire Co Officials and the residents of Tinicum, especially those in Lester (being the farthest away). Collectively, locating this exciting new station for the two-2 fire companies should be decided on a logistical standpoint rather than personal preferences. The preference issue simply shows a group of individuals lacking accountability. On a resolution stance, where then should they place this state of the art facility? Possibly in the vicinity of the Tinicum Twp Townhall, which is in the center of this historic community and will provide ample access with substantially quicker response times. While also maintaining one of the old fire stations as possibly a substation, in the event rail-activity is a factor, which wouldnt be a bad idea, as well. Basically, I deeply support the efforts to preserve the Lazaretto Site and hope Tinicum gets their state of the art fire station, as long as it is not at the cost of losing Pennsylvania History (Lazaretto Site). The men and women of Essingtion & Lester Fire Co's are true professionals and deserve a new fire station before the Co's merge. Build the state of the art facility, where it will serve ALL residents, businesses of Tinicum Twp, Delaware County, PA.
Jack Joseph, Harrisburg, Pa [05-03-2006]

Some trees need to be hugged, or we will have none. Some whales need to be saved, or we will have none. Some historic resources need to be preserved, or we will have none. And yes, some fire stations need to be built - but is the demoltion of this historic site, and the construction of a fire station and parking lot in its place, is this the best plan that the town fathers can produce? The one they will be proudest of years later? The one that takes all of the necessary information into account? Is there not some better location in the township for the fire station?
Douglas P. Humes, Broomall, PA [05-03-2006]

I support the saving and preservation of the Lazaretto site and hope that a friends group can become the trustees of the site so that it remains an important part of our historic and cultural landscape. Certainly there are creative ways of using it without ruining its important character that would also benefit the local community.
Marilyn Wood, Philadelphia, PA [05-03-2006]

I urge the town planners not to fall into the trap of imagining that the future is more important than history.
Mairi Primrose, United Kingdom [05-03-2006]

So many beautiful buildings like this are torn down in our country. Please do what you can to find the funding and the cause to preserve it
G W, New Jersey [05-02-2006]

It seems to me that it's time to rethink the firehouse plans. The Lazaretto property, with its lawns and artifacts, is just too valuable a resource to toy with. A firehouse can go almost anywhere.
anonymous [05-02-2006]

First of all, I would like to say that I am all in favor of progress and technological improvement and improving the lives of people. However, as the old saying goes "If you don't know where you came/come from, how will you know where you are going?" So much of Philadelphia history has and is still being destroyed to build bigger and better sports complexes, office buildings, theaters, etc... I love the Phillies, and the 76ers and the Eagles. But I also love the arts, culture, society hill, the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall. If we don't stop and make a real effort to "keep our history" alive and not demolish it, how will future generations even have a chance to know our history or even "who they are"? Having spent a good portion of my life in North and South Carolina, and then in the Philadelphia region, I see a huge difference, overall, in peoples' values and attitudes in trying to maintain the history of the different regions. In North Carolina, there are farms, estates, plantations, buildings that are still standing because people wanted to preserve their culture and history. These structures are open to people to visit, and having seen many of them, I and my 5 year old son, have gotten so much more out of physically being there, seeing these places in person, as opposed to having read about them in a book. Philadelphia, in general, is too quick to "upgrade and improve" instead of trying to maintain and preserve our history and culture. What would come of our existence and our knowledge of history if the Coliseum or Stone Henge had been "bulldozed down" to build a "safer, more improved structure". And what about the Leaning Tower of Pisa, or all the European cathedrals and buildings???? What about all the old estates that are in Rhode Island (our own countries history and culture). All of these sites are under historic preservation and they are immensely wonderful to see. There is nothing wrong in building a fire complex, but stop and think, do we really want to destroy one of the most historical places in our region??? We owe it to our future population, the children of today, to try and maintain some sort of culture and history. Don't erase the holocaust, Tom Sawyer and Little Black Sambo, the Pledge of Allegiance from the schools? This is history, not a racial or religious slur. HISTORY! "If we don't know where we came from, how will we know where we are going???" Preserve, educate, be concerned with the arts and culture. Don't distinquish it from our lives and our children's lives, and their children's lives. PRESERVE and CHERISH our past existence!
Debra Matz, Fort Washington, PA [05-02-2006]

well good luck - but don't complain if you succeed then your house burns fown coz the fire-folks couldn't get there in time. are there not more pressing matters in the states than historical buildings anyway? its not as if the states is that old... some suggestions: campaign on something more important like those gas guzzling 4wd big fat un-economic polluting vehicles you're all so fond of driving. clear your slums of poverty sort iraq out properly and stop getting up the nose of any country with a slightly different viewpoint; especially stop winding Iran up. far more worthwhile campaigns me thinks. (if you don't like my comments - don't send spam!) oh my, this site is censored by a webmaster. don't expect my comments to appear anytime soon....
squeakstar, uk [05-02-2006]

It appears from the article on your site that the only way the township was able to afford to purchase the Lazaretto property from the developer who wanted to raze it was by planning to use part of the site for the firestation/evacuation center and using that plan to apply for and receive funding from other sources. If not for that purchase, the building might not be standing now. However, because of that purchase, the historically important landscape feature is now threatened. Would the township even be allowed to move to another site if the funds were given to pursue the current plan? If a new source of funding for the Lazaretto stepped in, could the firestation be moved elsewhere? What are the long term plans for the building itself and where will the funding come from? I agree that the site is of vast historical importance, and I think the idea of it being a "bookend" site, matching Independence Hall in telling the story of the country's founding is inspired. However, let's not castigate the township for pursuing what seemed, at the time, to be a well-intentioned rescue. Instead, let's all work together to solve the current problem, which is trying to create a solution; ideally moving the firestation and moving forward with a plan that is pleasing to all -- honoring the national significance of the site as well as the needs and desires of local residents.
Architecture Aficionado, Philadelphia [05-02-2006]

Please do not let another historical building and grounds be destroyed. I've seen too much of our history destroyed for the sake of progress. I'm sure there are other sites to build a firehouse.
BTM, Boothwyn, De County, Penna [05-01-2006]

Destroying our past does not improve our future. We should know by now that these irrepalceable glimpses of the past will mean more to our grandchildren in 100 years than anything we develope in their place today.
Lewis Keen [05-01-2006]

This is not about saving an anomalous remnant related to local history; this is about preserving a cultural landscape of far-reaching significance. The time is now to ensure that the Lazaretto receives the acknowledgment and attention it deserves.
Gregory Dietrich, New York, NY [05-01-2006]

The preservation forces of the state and the nation and citizen outrage should be brought into play to fully protect and restore the Lazaretto AND RETAIN ALL ITS land without the impact of a fire station and huge parking lot behind it. The context of this site is crucially important to the interpretation of the property as one of the most important, earliest immigration stations remaining in the country. The Lazaretto site is an amazing survivor and to have Tinicum Township suddenly not recognize the cultural and architectural history this property reflects is particularly distressing. Establish a task force to locate a different site for the fire station; raise funds or use eminent domain to acquire other land, but don't obliterate over 200 years of history. This property was the first point of landing for thousands of immigrants before they reached Philadelphia and has the potential for being a fantastic tourist attraction on the Delaware River connected by boat to Fort Mifflin and the city. This is Philadelphia's Ellis Island--why would anyone want to destroy it and not protect all that is left? Until the Lazaretto was built, all ships had to stop at Fort Mifflin to go through quarantine. Correspondence of the time, especially during the Yellow Fever epidemic, explains how inadequate that process was, and how desperate the passengers and shipmates became on their ships, waiting to get clearance. The Lazaretto was built to be Philadelphia's highly sophisticated quarantine station and represents the architecture and medical practices of the federal period and the developing nation. There is much to be learned from this site and its yet unexplored landscape. Save history, context, character, and the sense of place--do not build the fire station on the Lazaretto land. Jean K. Wolf, Wolf Historic Preservation, Ardmore, PA
Jean K. Wolf, Ardmore, PA [04-30-2006]

The preservation of Lazaretto Station and other historic landmarks has merit. To succeed however, you must be part of a positive solution. Help suggest other means by which the station requirements can be meet without disturbing the endangered site. The world is full of objectors and complainers, but TO SUCCEED YOU MUST BE PART OF THE SOLUTION!
Kirsten Hauer, Greenville, Delaware [04-29-2006]

Being able to experience an historic site, like the Lazaretto, provides an increased understanding of what occurred in history- an experience that cannot be captured by just reading about a place in a book or on a plaque near the site. For the Lazaretto, this history is not just limited to the main building, but it is the entire site that is historically significant. Tinicum's need for a fire station is understandable; however, this site is not only of local or even statewide importance, it is nationally significant. Building an enormous fire station and excavation center, which may be better labeled a banquet hall, is destroying the historic context of the building. It is not only limiting future funding sources for the building or future income for Tinicum through tourism, but it is robbing the nation of a piece of its history. This is a case where the need of the many (the nation) MUST outweigh the wants of the few.
Jill Hall, Drexel Hill, PA [04-28-2006]

Please save this important historic site.
anonymous, Allentown, PA [04-28-2006]

This site is worth saving!
Laura Miller, Fort Washington, PA [04-28-2006]

the lazaretto is a national landmark. i refuse to let it go under because of insensetive jerks thinking it would be great to put a firestation in. parking lots and fire stations can be built up anywhere, so why would you choose a place that has been apart of history as opposed to a place nobody cares about? history is history. everyone should respect it. end of story.
anonymous [04-28-2006]

Everyone here on this posting is up in arms about Tinicum's insensitivity to history and aesthetics, their disregard for human graves, the release of pathogens, and they won't listen to the concerns of all of you they consider to be elitists. Culture is not a factor in their pragmatic thought process. They moved the fire station and the banquet hall/ bingo parlor (they pretend it's an evacuation center) to this historic site because they think it will be cheaper to build here than on the original the Westinghouse site. Even in their pragmatism they did not consider that they are isolating the fire station east of a freight railroad track ­ cost is their only consideration. Well think about this, half the 38 thousand square foot building is for the banquet hall/ bingo parlor. Almost all of the 200 car parking lot is for the hall/parlor. This is to be used to raise money for the volunteer fire company, but at what cost in dollars. The building and parking lot could cost maybe 3 or 4 million dollars. Capitol costs for this construction could run $200,000 to as much as $300,000 per year. Then consider utilities. This is not a green building. How much will heat and air conditioning cost? Add maintenance, snow removal, and insurance and you get a sizable number. Oh, and depreciation too. Can the income from the banquets and bingo games approach this cost? Think about that Tinicum pragmatists. A Delaware County resident
anonymous, Delaware County [04-28-2006]

Tinicum Township officials must realize that the Lazaretto is not just an old building interesting to local historians, but that it is a NATIONALLY significant historic site on the same level as Independence Hall and Ellis Island. It has a close association with our earliest history as a possible part of the Printzhof, center of the Swedish settlement as well as being an integral part of the history of transportation, the history of medicine, the history of immigration, and the history of aviation. The extremely large fire station, if built, will destroy the historic context and the historic significance of the building much like building a "Home Depot" on Ellis Island. Tinicum Township officials are to be commended for their purchase of the threatened Lazaretto, but they have to realize that they will be destroying the historic value of the Lazaretto site if this extremely large fire station is built. The future uses of the Lazaretto will be severely limited and the stories it could tell curtailed. This will in turn limited future funding sources that would otherwise be available for the restoration of an intact historic resource of this magnitude. Tinicum officials must be made to realize their responsibilities as stewards of this incredible site. Finding another location for the fire station is imperative!
Kathleen Wandersee, Chadds Ford Township, PA [04-28-2006]

Being born and raised in Europe, to me history and preserving it is very important. Especially for a "young country" such as the USA, every bit of history is important. But, unfortunately, I have seen too many parking lots, fast food places, etc. being built where they should not be. Furthermore, in this particular case, the possible pathogens may seek a revenge! Good luck in keeping Lazaretto alive!
Ruta Zadziorski, Wilmington, DE [04-27-2006]

Lazaretto is beautiful and should be preserved and protected from encroachments. We have already lost the immigration station in Philadelphia across from Gloria Dei Church. Let's not lose this last vestige of the arrival spot of so many of our ancestors. The porch is magnificent. So are the chimneys. I can't think of a worse place for an evacuation center than on a riverbank. Shouldn't they be looking for a high hill?
Jacqueline Roach, West Chester, PA [04-27-2006]

As Chairperson for my township's historical commission, and one who has fought to preserve our history for future generations, (which history is continually threatened with the pressures of development), I beg the powers that be to halt this proposed development of the Lazaretto site. From what I can understand, the new structure will be almost 3 times the size of the existing historic buildings and the proposed parking lot will come to within less than 50' of the Lazaretto. I support fire stations and emergency services, but those uses belong elsewhere. This site contains ancient burial sites, and a particularly significant historic structure that represents our county's early beginnings and the population that gave America its start. This would be like building a shipping terminal next to Ellis Island. I urge Tinicum's leaders to allow this 10 acre site to remain as is, and to put the firehouse on another more appropriate site. The Lazaretto should be an important destination for our citizens to learn of our early settlement history, and is a site that could be of extreme benefit to Tinicum - let's be visionary and creative in how this site will be preserved for our future generations, and make sure plans are sensitive and within the bounds of what the Lazaretto stands for. And having just read Rebecca Sell's comments, I think she says it all and well!
Pennie Scott, Concord Township Historical Commission, Concord Township, Delaware County [04-27-2006]

It would be a shame to destroy such a historic site. We need to preserve history like this for future generations.
mbl, New York [04-27-2006]

Big sign on site thanks Gov Rendell implying the money was given for the fire station. Hmmm.
anonymous [04-27-2006]

I think this building is fascinating. It should most certainly be saved - it would make either a wonderful home or a greast building to be looked around. And thats just from the photos.
Joseph Broad, Montreal, Quebec and London, England [04-27-2006]

a gem..too significant not to save...alternate use/trade of properties could serve two parties here...could bring business to town...owners are shortsighted...are there national entities that could help here...should advertise problems in paper
anonymous [04-27-2006]

We need to keep America's landmarks that were here before us for those who will come after us. So much of our heritage is best understood by our ability to see it, touch it and feel its significance. Removing it and remembering only through a textbook will be disasterous for our children and grandchildren. Do not destroy Lazarettos' site. Missy Gale, Colleyville, Texas
Millicent Gale, Colleyville, Texas [04-27-2006]

I feel that this plan to build a fire station on the grounds of the Lazaretto is short-sighted to say the least. While this may be "unused land", the potential it has as a historic site and its potential for income to the township should far outweigh the need to build ANYTHING on this site. I think it shows a lack of education and a complete disregard of our nation's history. We live in such a diposable world with little respect for what is REALLY important. A true American wound never see the merit in desecrating this beautiful site. Kathy Fucci, Wilmington, DE 4/27/06
Kathryn E. Fucci, Wilmington, DE [04-27-2006]

I think what is happening to the Lazaretto site is deplorable. It is incredible that this site and its highly significant building has remained intact for so many centuries. And now people are realizing how rare a piece of history it is, and finding funding to study and document it. Hopefully it will be restored and a new use found so it can keep on being an integral part of living history. But the Township's plan to locate a firehouse and evacuation Center of such huge proportions seems like it will destroy the historic, visual, and social aspects of the site. It will clash with the site's character. The Lazeratto is not just a nationally important building. It has a context that is imbued with meaning as well. Tinicum is about to lose one of its most prized possessions - part of its' unique identity, that can help strengthen its' sense of place and bring in tourists and visitors, which means dollars for the community. I believe that if there is absolutely no better location for the needed firehouse/evacuation centre, then some kind of mutually beneficial site plan might be able to work, with both new and old buildings to be on the site. But people must get together - Twp officials, architects, planners, historians, pertinent agencies and work together to make the best possible solution. Cooperation is the key to successful building projects. Otherwise, they can become lasting reminders of what not to do.
Beverlee Barnes, Radnor, PA [04-27-2006]

The Lazaretto has great opportunity for reuse. It is so close to the riverfront and near the airport. It would make a great hostel or bed and breakfast, but not if you can't see it. I can't believe such a piece of national history could be destroyed with public money.
Justin, Upper Darby, PA [04-27-2006]

Why are these historically significant parcels and structures constantly threatened? Why must community activists be called upon time and time again to preserve our nation's history and the sanctity of grounds where many have been laid to rest? I find it truly disturbing after seeing all the vacant and decaying buildings, that all people want to do is build more on anything left open. It is not right to allow developers to pay homage to the almighty dollar rather than to our nation's history. Once destroyed, the property will never be as significant as it is today. What are we leaving our children? There must be somewhere else to put the fire hall.
Kathleen Koonce, Delaware County, PA [04-27-2006]

I am saddened to hear that this site may be destroyed. We cannot forget where we came from or the importance of having places like this for our children and their children. Save the Lazaretto!
Jen, New York [04-27-2006]

I would just like to add my voice in opposition to any development plan of any part of the Lazaretto's site for any use other than enhancing the visitor's experience of the site. For once and for all, this is an extremely important historic site, it needs to be preserved in toto. Period.
Jane Dorchester, Architectural Historian, West Chester, Pennsylvania [04-27-2006]

This would be a sin, properties such as this that are TRULY historic in this nations' history MUST be preserved. What if they wanted to make Independence Hall a strip center some would we feel about that? My opinion, some properties that are "historic" are simply old run-down buildings that are not that significant, the Lazaretto property is not in that class, this needs to be preserved and maintained, permanently! Paul Berman
Paul Berman, Thornton, PA [04-27-2006]

Presumed open spaces such as the Lazaretto Station site are, to politicians and developers, like eating potato chips. You just can't stop at one! Historical lands, once lost, can never be regained and an invasion of even part of the site destroys the viability of the rest. Anything that can be done to encourage the municipality to use other lands, must be done. Please add my voice to the "don't touch the Lazaretto Station site" campaign.
Ned D. Heindel, Easton, Pennsylvania, Northampton County, PA [04-27-2006]

Where is the sense in locating fire station complex on the side of active train tracks that bisect Tinicum Township? There is none. Right now there are two stations on either side of the tracks. I feel bad for whoever has a fire living north of those tracks. Where is the sense in putting an evacuation center, which would be used in case of a hurricane like Floyd, this close to the 100-year flood plain?? There is none. Where is the sense in having over 202 paved parking spots? Tinicum says for evacuees. Evacuees can't park on the grass the one time there is a severe hurricane? Where is the sense? There is none.
Mrs. Powell, Delaware County [04-27-2006]

The Lazaretto site is one of the most important and historically significant sites in the nation, if not, the world! To build a fire station and evacuation complex on nearly half of the property absolutely destroys the entire site's historic integrity, corrupts 100s of years of archaeology dating back to the first European settlement from the 17th century, eliminates the view of the site from all angles except from the river, desecrates the land where hundreds, if not, thousands of diseased immigrants and travelers who died in quarantine were buried, and prohibits the site from ever developing as a historic tourist area. -It currently has potential for National Historic Landmark designation, the most elite of all historic designations. -It has potential to acquire funding for the site's preservation and restoration of the buildings thereon. -It has potential to be not only one of Tinicum Township's greatest tourist attractions, but also the nation's, bringing more money into the community. NONE OF THESE WILL HAPPEN ONCE THIS FIRE STATION IS BUILT HERE. I support the township's need for a firehouse. I DO NOT support destroying the future of a truly unique piece of the nation's and the WORLD'S PAST simply because it would be cheaper to build there. The township has other property available on which to build. Tinicum Township calls this a preservation project because they are leaving one 18th century building of a multi-building, 10-acre site. What Tinicum Township is doing is NOT PRESERVATION. The fire station project is misguided and an act of DESTRUCTION. Ask yourself: Would you approve construction of a building, a football field wide and deep, with over 200 parking spaces paved with black top covering 5 acres of land, on half of Ellis Island or Gettysburg Battlefield? Or how about, more close to home, on Governor Printz State Park? FIND A NEW PLACE FOR THE FIRE STATION COMPLEX and SAVE THE LAZARETTO!
Rebecca Sell, Lazaretto Historian, Pennsylvania [04-27-2006]

It never ceases to amaze me that there are people/ groups out there that have so little respect for our nation's origins and history. If a similar redevelopment plan were proposed for Ellis Island the majority of people would be up in arms. "Conventional history" (i.e. textbooks) portrays Ellis Island as the single most important point of entry into the U.S., although it only operated for approximately 62 years, while other important immigration sites such as The Lazaretto (or Angel Island in S.F., Locust Point in Baltimore, and similar sites in Savannah, Charleston, New Orleans, Mobile, Galveston, et al) are hardly mentioned at all. It is time that the accepted "American mythology" expands to recognize these other, and often much older, points of entry into the U.S. Otherwise, many parts of our past may be forgotten as they are razed, paved over and lost forever. Save The Lazaretto! "They paved paradise and put up a parking lot."
Bruce [04-27-2006]

The State of Pennsylvania and the City of Philadelphia have a major place in the history of out country. Far too many Historic sites in and around the Philadelphia area have been lost to the greediness of land developers and the mismanagement of local Municipalities. To lose a landmark such as Lazaretto to a Fire House would be more than a desecration of graves of people coming to the new world but would be a major travesty on the part of Tinicum Township. James Suplee
James F. Suplee, Delaware County [04-27-2006]

The plans for the new construction on the Lazaretto property are in direct conflict with all accepted standards for the treatment of historic properties. This work will permanently damage one of the most important historic sites in the nation. It is miraculous that it has survived up to 2006 when all of the other immigration stations of the early 1800s have long since been demolished. It is tragic that it is being slated for a development that could be accommodated on other land. The citizens of Pennsylvania and Tinicum Township in particular are going to lose an opportunity that will not come again.
Bill Bolger, Philadelphia [04-25-2006]

The State of Pennsylvania gave Tinicum Township several million dollars (I heard it was six million dollars) to purchase and preserve the Lazaretto site. Unfortunately the Township officials decided it would be cheaper to build a fire station (which had been designed for a different site with reported soil problems) on this site. This is hardly preserving the historic site as the State funds intended. I have seen the site plan for the fire station. The fire station development will not only severely impact the future development of the property as a nation historic site, but it will also desecrate the graves of immigrants who died while trying to find refuge in the United States. This is unacceptable. Usually historic treasures, such as this, are administered by nonprofit organizations or agencies like the Nation Park Service or historic commissions whose soul propose is the protection and development of the resource as a public landmark. Municipal governments are not generally culturally qualified to administer such efforts. I hope everyone will sign on and the support saving this national historic treasure. If we all let the Tinicum officials, State officials, and others know that we and appalled by this misuse of preservation funding, possibly this travesty can be prevented. Richard Linderman, AIA
Richard Linderman [04-25-2006]