Coin marks anniversary of Champlain's visit

TICONDEROGA - State Sen. Betty Little has presented Celine Racine Paquette, Hudson-Fulton-Champlain Quadricentennial vice chairwoman, with a resolution by the New York State Senate.

The resolution states, in part, that the commemorative medal commissioned by Paquette to honor the 400th anniversary of Samuel de Champlain has been named the Official Quadricentennial Medal by the Senate on June 2, 2009.

The medal is an original design inspired by Paquette, designed by Judi Danforth and crafted by Danforth Pewterers of Middlebury, Vt. And now, formally named the "Official Medal" for this 400th anniversary by the New York State Senate.

The souvenir medals are housed in a soft pouch and boxed with an insert that explains, "Guided by his dream and his astrolabe, in 1603, Samuel de Champlain crossed the ocean and discovered New France. In 1609, he arrived on what is now known as Lake Champlain, the only place that the widely traveled, yet humble explorer named after himself.

"The astrolabe was the GPS of the time, giving the latitude in relation to the position of the sun and other celestial bodies. It is told that in 1867, Champlain's precious tool, his lost astrolabe, was found in the Ottawa River Valley. But no one knows for sure.

"The astrolabe symbolizes the New World and 'dreams come true."

The medals are being sold for $12.95, as well as the previously released astrolabe key rings that are priced at $5. They can be found at any branch of Champlain National Bank, Champlain Telephone Company and PrimeLink, Champlain Federal Credit Union, Hancock House in Ticonderoga, Adirondack History Museum in Elizabethtown, town of Champlain office, village of Champlain office and the Samuel de Champlain History Center.

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