The Jim and Mary Lee Museum
Plan 9 West is located on Rt. 519 1/2 mile south of Route 57 intersection east of Phillipsburg.
The address is 477 County Route 519, Stewartsville NJ 08886.
The Fall Bus Tour date will be October 6, 2012. The tour is limited to the first 30 people that sign up. Please contact the Warren County Planning Department to reserve your seat. You can reach them at (908) 475-6532.
The Jim and Mary Lee Museum is a small museum located at the site of Morris Canal Plane 9 West. This site is the former home of the late James S. Lee, Sr., Morris Canal author and historian. Visitors will be able to walk the inclined plane, tour the remains of the powerhouse, tailrace, and turbine chamber as well as the museum.
In addition to having one of the original buildings still on site, there are many sleeper stones along the long inclined plane. Near the top is the cable that once towed the canal boats. The Lees have an impressive collection of Morris Canal artifacts as well.
What sets Plane 9 West apart from most other sites is the turbine, still in place in the ground. When James Lee, Sr. purchased the property, he realized that the pit where the turbine was located was filled in with rubble from the days when the canal was demolished and that there was a good chance that the turbine was still there. James, his family, and friends spent decades on and off digging out the immense hole in the ground. What they found shocked them. Yes, the turbine was there (although damaged and tipped on its side), and the chamber was completely intact, including the tail race.
You can climb through the tail race tunnel into the chamber to see the turbine. James Lee, Jr. and his son, an archaeologist, would be glad to show you around. They also give lectures. They can be contacted via email at: email@example.com.
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