Thursday, October 14, 2010
Hartford Kewl Buildings: The Keney Memorial Clock Tower
The Keney Tower is located at the triangle of Main, Albany and Ely, one of our favorite areas of town that we lovingly refer to as Hartford's Bermuda Triangle. Most will recognize the name Keney, as in Keney Park. The tower stands on the spot of the Keney brothers grocery business. Constructed in 1898, it was built as a memorial to the Keney brothers' mother and is Hartford's only free standing tower. Sadly we must tell our mothers with near certainty that we will never be building either of them a 130 foot tall tower memorial.
Despite towering over everything in the area, the tower can be hard to notice. There are trees that when in bloom obscure the view of the tower from the street. There is a bus stop right outside the tower and the soon to be passengers gave us some weird looks as we walked through the black wrought-iron gate that surrounds the area.
Being in the area of the tower brings on the the rarest and most bizarre feelings one can get in a city; solitude. For some reason being in the grassy, tree covered area makes one almost forget that a busy city intersection is just yards away.
The tower stands a towering 130 feet tall. It's appearance gives the impression that it might have once been part of a church, but it has always been a free standing structure. The area has heavy coverage from trees and a paved walk path around the perimeter. There are eight to ten benches around the tower. A couple of power wires run into the clock tower. We found a pair of sneakers hanging from one of these wires.