The National Slate Association’s Fall Conference was held in Ithaca, New York, on Cornell University’s campus. The event was well attended, including HKC Roofing’s own, Ed Stinson and Henry Mitchell. The goal was to further their knowledge of slate and the practices of traditional roofing. The conference included a walking tour of Cornell University and the many building preservation projects they’ve completed. Many of the historic buildings have had the slate roofs replaced with new slate. We were really impressed by the varying types of slate used to cover the buildings. The slate included Vermont Black, Vermont Semi-Weathering Green, Vermont Mottled Purple, Vermont Unfading Green, Vermont Unfading Purple, North Country Black (Canadian), New York Red, Chapman, Pennsylvania and Pennsylvania Black. We found many of the projects utilizing lead-coated copper as the flashing material. While lead is an unpopular material, the lead coated copper has a very long life which is desirable when working with slate. At the end of our walking tour there was a demonstration on a PAUS mobile crane. We attended several workshops that covered topics from “Synthetic Slate vs Natural Slate” to “Architectural Copper Sheet Metal”. The NSA awarded John Chan, the current President, for his many years of service to the association and the slate industry.
Ithaca proved to be a welcoming town, we had several dinners and social gatherings with the other attending guests. The event proved to be very valuable.