Eagle Scout project restores local historical markers

COURTESY OF NEWS REPORTS

Historical markers throughout Pittsford got a recent facelift, thanks to 14-year-old Boy Scout Ethan Rehkopf.  

The local teen led a group of more than 30 volunteers to help clean, sand, paint and seal these signs as part of his Eagle Scout project. This effort marks the first time in over a decade that all signs were restored simultaneously to ensure they were updated and preserved for the next generation.  

Local Boy Scout Ethan Rehkopf restores historical markers throughout Pittsford for his Eagle Scout project.

The project started by removing most of the signs from their historical locations with help from the Department of Public Works to a central location so the restoration could take place. Some signs, including the Denonville marker at Oak Hill Country Club and the Seneca Trail marker along the Canal at state Route 96, could not be removed due to their condition, so they were restored and repainted on-site.  

More than 30 volunteers repaint and restore historical markers in Pittsford, many of which were first installed in 1939.

After seeking approval from the town and property owners, Rehkopf, a member of Pittsford Boy Scout Troop 341, gathered his volunteers over two days and led them through the restoration process for the double-sided signs, many of which were installed in 1939. He applied a protective sealant to protect the signs from weather-related fading and salt damage.  

Rehkopf said he hopes to inspire others from surrounding towns and villages to update their own signs as a part of the over 2,800 historical markers in New York state.  

The Spring House marker before being repainted and restored.

“It would be terrific to see all of the historical markers in and around Rochester look as wonderful as the ones we just restored for the town of Pittsford,” he said.  

Rehkopf is the son of Karin and Dale Rehkopf, of Pittsford, and younger brother to Eagle Scouts Connor and Carson Rehkopf.  

The newly restored Spring House sign.