A joint announcement has been made by Harry Hoke, president of the Tryon County Muzzle Loaders, Inc., and Willis Barshied, Jr., president of Fort Klock Historic Restoration indicating that a new lease arrangement securing the future of Fort Klock as a museum has been entered into by the two organizations.

The previous lease was granted to the Tryon County Muzzle Loaders, Inc., a membership corporation by Alex Don on September 20, 1954. That original lease was drawn for a term of 20 years with an option to renew for an additional 20 years. No provision was included for the positive future of Fort Klock as a museum. For some time the Tryon County Muzzle Loaders explored possible ways of safeguarding' the Fort from becoming simply a social organization's headquarters sometime .in the future.

The final decision was to preserve the Tryon County Muzzle Loaders much the same as in the past while creating another organization with a charter membership composed of all Tryon County Muzzle Loaders who chose to accept membership. The operation of the Fort as a museum is to be conducted through the newly formed organization in cooperation with the Muzzle Loaders. The rifle range and shooting facilities will continue to be governed as in the past by the Muzzle Loaders.

The new corporation was chartered on November 20, 1964, by the New York State Board of Regents. It was named Fort Klock Historic Restoration and is a non-profit educational institution. One of the several advantages of such charter is the possibility of obtaining a tax exemption status making donations tax deductible. The exemption status was set up by an IRS ruling on April 28, 1965.

Through the kindness and foresight of the Don family a deed dated September 13, 1965 conveyed Fort Klock and the surrounding grounds to Fort Klock Historic Restoration. A separate deed was at the same time given to Tryon County Muzzle Loaders conveying the shooting range on the New Turnpike. In presenting the deeds, the Don family has shown their faith in the two organizations and made the future of Fort Klock more secure.

However, the only sure way to ensure the success of the project is the continuation of strong, organizations and the continued support of all our area friends.

The lease just' entered into between the two groups will, in the opinion of the members of each, further insure' the future. While preserving the right of the Tryon County Muzzle Loaders, Inc. to hold meetings at Fort Klock and to conduct affairs much the same as in the past, for a period of U5 years, it also ensures the permanent right of the chartered organization to operate the museum. Other important provisions by mutual agreement would prohibit the leasee from sub-leasing the property or any portion thereof and prohibit the sale of alcoholic beverages on the grounds.

Fort Klock To Be Preserved as Museum

By Willis Barshied, Jr.