By Dan Hust
WURTSBORO July 30, 2002 Back in April, Guy and Jean Dougherty had asked friends, neighbors and fellow Town of Mamakating residents to help make their dream come true in the Village of Wurtsboro.
Three months and nearly $20,000 later, thats exactly what happened.
Tears welled up in Jeans eyes Sunday as a Town of Mamakating Highway Department crane hoisted the two-sided face of the villages new clock onto its support post next to the veterans memorial park on Sullivan Street.
Un-be-lievable, exclaimed Jean as she watched the final assembly of the Howard Replica II, a clock based on a 19th century companys version but made just a few months ago by the Verdin Company of Cincinnati, Ohio.
Curiously, while all the work was going on, no one removed the little sign next to the clocks base (made out of concrete donated from E. Tetz and Sons) that read Wurtsboro Renaissance.
But with the Sullivan Renaissance movement sweeping the county, it was evident to all that this project one of 35 under the auspices of the Wurtsboro chapter was yet another success story.
Its all paid for, said Guy, who long has dreamed of a village clock in Wurtsboro. The community response has been overwhelming.
And thats not just Wurtsboro residents (the Doughertys, for example, dont even live in the village). Indeed, thanks to a Sullivan County Democrat article, one of the first major donations to the effort came from Staten Island.
For amounts ranging between $100 and $500, contributors received a glass with the clocks image on it or an exact replica of the clock itself. In short order, virtually the entire $20,000 was raised to purchase the centerpiece.
Even Carl Morse of the local E.A. Morse Company drove 10 hours one way to Ohio to pick up the clock pieces.
This is really not about the clock, said Jean, the town clerk, as the illuminated clock face was being checked out. This is about the community working together toward a goal.
And the effort isnt over. Besides competing this Sunday in the Wurtsboro Renaissances mini-contest (Sullivan Renaissances is happening later this year), the clock will be dedicated to local veterans on Veterans Day and will shortly feature gold plates on its support base with the names of sponsors inscribed thereon.
Its a great idea, remarked Mamakating Supervisor Fred Harding as he watched Verdin technician Ken Neill coordinate the installation. Guy and Jean are one of the few people who could do it. The town and village are fortunate to have them as friends and neighbors.
This shows how a community comes together, added Wurtsboro Mayor Bob Whitehead (the village is footing the continuing electric and insurance bills). While were talking about this, theres other things happening even now. These are all independent groups working together.
Now, people arent timid about saying Wurtsboro is a nice place to live, he continued. And Jean, shes a go-getter, theres no question about that.
Guy, however, took on the task of setting the clock, remarking as he worked the controls, God-willing, 100 years from now, itll still be there and still running.
Observing his efforts with a smile, Jean wryly noted, Its gonna be Guy time.
Donations are still being welcomed for continuing efforts. To find out more, call Jean Dougherty at 888-3025.