Philipsburg Manor House
381 North Broadway
Sleepy Hollow, NY 10591
Fee: Please check the website for the COVID updates
My review on TripAdvisor:
The Philipsburg Manor House
I have visited the Philipsburg Manor House and Estate many times over the years. During the “Headless Horseman” Halloween activities, the house is open for tours. You are able to tour the rooms and see the home in a spooky environment. The house was lit by candles and the tour guides lead you through the house.
The Manor House from the bridge over the creek
During a special event at the holidays, the house had seasonal decorations, lit by a combination candles and open hearth fires in the fireplace and tour guides explained a Colonial holiday season.
The estate during the day
The Manor House as it was explained to me was a place where the Philipse family stayed when they were away from the main family mansion and was doing business on the estate. So the home was comfortable and workable and functional but not luxurious as the main manor house where the family lived.
The back gardens are used during the Spring and Summer to grow fruits and vegetables
The kitchen, common room and bedrooms were nicely furnished at the time for the owners visits but was not elegant in the form of the main manor house. This was full working estate at all times. The Mill is located near the manor house and their are walking paths around the house.
The kitchen at the manor house was functional but not elaborate
During the Halloween season, both Tarrytown and Sleepy Hollow are busy with activities with readings, cemetery tours, ‘haunted events’ and other activities. Please check out the Historic Hudson Valley website for the roster of events. Things have changed since the era of COVID.
a recreation of the bedroom at the Philipsburg Manor
During the Christmas holidays, the house in the past was decorated for Christmas but in the post-COVID time, the house was just open for tours. In December 2022, I got to visit the house the week before Christmas before it closed for the season. Like most older historical homes and sites will be closed until the Spring so this was the last opportunity to see the house and grounds. Unlike the past, the house was kept in regular touring state. We got to tour the kitchens and bedrooms of the home and heard a talk on how the how was run when Mr. Philispe was not in residence. This was strictly a working farm and mill for the family with the main residence being closer to the City.
The estate at the close of winter
Most of the action was outdoors with tours of the mill, the outside ovens used for the family’s bakery business and outdoor gardens that were cleared out for the winter months.
The Mill is where the process of converting wheat grown on the estate was made into flour for the New York market
The Milling wheel to process wheat to flour
The History of the Philipsburg Manor House:
(WIKI/Historic Hudson River Valley Society)
The Philipsburg Manor House is an historic house in the Upper Mills Section of the former sprawling Colonial-era estate known as Philipsburg Manor. Together with the water mill and the trading site the house is operated bas a non-profit museum by the Historical Hudson River Valley. It is located on US 9 in the Village of Sleepy Hollow, NY. (Wiki)
The Philipsburg Manor House and Mill area of the estate
The Manor House dates from 1693 when wealthy Province of New York merchant Frederick Philipse was granted a charter for 52,00 acres along the Hudson River by the British Crown. He built this facility at the meeting of the Pocantico and Hudson Rivers as a provisioning depot for the family Atlantic sea trade and as headquarters for a worldwide shipping operation. For more than thirty years, Frederick and his wife, Margaret and later his son Adolph shipped hundreds of African men, women and children as slaves across the Atlantic. The manor was tenanted by farmers of various European backgrounds and operated by enslaved Africans (Wiki).
Recreation of the baking operations on the estate
The baking oven
Baking hardtack at the ovens. This would have been used for shipping voyages.
At the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War, the Philipses supported the British Crown and their landholdings were seized and auctioned off. The manor house was used during the war, most notably by British General Sir Henry Clinton during the militaries in 1779. It was there that he wrote what is known as the Philipsburg Proclamation, which declared all Patriot-owned slaves to be freed and that blacks taken prisoner while serving in Patriot forces would be sold in slavery (Wiki/Hudson River Valley History).
Touring the Dutch barns for wheat seed processing
The processing of wheat and straw
A National Historic Landmark in 1961, the farm features a stone manor house filled with a collection of 17th and 18th Century period furnishings, a working water-powered grist mill and millpond, an 18 century barn, a slave garden and reconstructed tenant farm house (Wiki/Hudson River Valley History).
During the season when the estate is open for visitors, there are costumed interpreters who reenact life in pre-Revolutionary War times doing various chores around the estate. During the Halloween season, the home is open for haunted tours of the manor during the “Headless Horseman” event. During the Christmas holiday season, the home is open for seasonal activities. Please check the website during COVID for activities (Historic Hudson River Valley).