Tag: Hudson Valley Historic Sites

Historic Huguenot Street                             81 Huguenot Street    New Paltz, NY 12561

Historic Huguenot Street 81 Huguenot Street New Paltz, NY 12561

Historic Huguenot Street

81 Huguenot Street

New Paltz, NY  12561

(845) 255-1889

http://www.huguenotstreet.org

info@huguenotstreet.org

My review on TripAdvisor:

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g48245-d288641-Reviews-Historic_Huguenot_Street-New_Paltz_New_York.html?m=19905

Historic Huguenot Street.png

Plan your visit:

For current information on guided tours, group tour reservations, school groups, special events or accessibility, call (845) 255-1660 or visit http://www.huguenotstreet.org.

App:

Our free Walking Tour mobile app features histories of the houses on the street with archival photos as well as photos of the house interiors and the collection pieces within. Mobile users can download the app on both the App Store and Google Play.

History of the site:

At our 10 acre National Historic Landmark District, visitors experience more than 300 years of history through the lens of a French Huguenot community as it evolved over time. Guided tours begin with an introduction to the pre-colonial Munsee Esopus landscape dating back 7000 years and the religion, culture and architecture of New Paltz’s earliest European settlers and enslaved Africans. The experience continues as guests visit fully furnished houses reflecting unique human narratives and changing tastes across the Colonial and Federal periods, through the Gilded Age and into the early 20th century.

(Promotional Materials)

I visited Historic Huguenot Street one afternoon after visiting here about five years earlier during the holidays. The houses are easy to tour and the street is blocked so that you can walk amongst the houses.  There are tours every half hour when the site is open. Here you can tour inside the houses instead of just the grounds. On a nice day, it is interesting to look over the architecture of the homes.

Make sure that you take time to look at the historical cemetery by the church at the end of the block. Some of the original settlers are buried here. It is also nice to tour around the Waykill River.

Take the extra time to visit the gift shop and see the information video on the site and look over the literature of the site.

The area has a pretty interesting history.

History of the Huguenot Street Historic District:

The site is owned and operated by Historic Huguenot Street (HHS), which was founded in 1894. In 1899, Historic Huguenot Street purchased the Jean Hasbrouck House as the first house museum on the street. In the 1950’s and 60’s, the organization and related family associations purchased most of the remaining stone houses in the district and subsequently opened them as museums. These acquisitions were funded in large part by descendants of the original Huguenot founders. Their family associations play a key role in supporting the institution today.

The Individual Houses:

Bevier-Elting House:

Dating to the early 18th century, the house was originally a one room building built with the narrow or gable end facing the street-then the prevailing style of the low countries of Northern Europe. Two expansions were built later as was a small cellar that was used to house African slaves. The house was built by the Beiver family, one of the founding families and subsequently sold to the Dutch Elting family.

Abraham Hasbrouck House:

The structure as the Abraham Hasbrouck House was built in three phases in the 1720’s and 30’s. The first of the house-the center room-was constructed in 1721 by Daniel Hasbrouck, the son of Abraham Hasbrouck the patentee. The date 1721 is based on recent dendrochronology, which is a process by which wooden structural members are dated. This house represents a New World innovation in Dutch-style architecture. The initial houses in the Dutch region of New York, such as New Amsterdam, Albany and Kingston were built in the tradition of Dutch cities with the gable-ends to the street, which conserves street frontage. The basic structure of the house consists of a series of H-bents which spread the weight of the house across the entire expanse. The original one room house exhibited several defining elements of Dutch architecture, the jambless fireplace being the principal and most recognized feature in the house. Recently re-opened to the public in July 2012 following a restoration and reinterpretation focusing on the life of Widow Wyntje.

Jean Hasbrouck House:

Also built in 1721 by Jean’s son Jacob (and perhaps incorporating elements of an early home built by New Paltz founder Jean Hasbrouck), this home is an excellent example of Hudson Valley Dutch architecture and the showpiece of Historic Huguenot Street. A National Historic Landmark in its own right, it boasts the only remaining original jambless fireplace of any of the Huguenot Street houses and is one of the few surviving examples in what was formerly the New Netherland.

In 2006, the north wall of the house was carefully dismantled, repaired and reconstructed. Reproduction Dutch-style casement windows were installed. Interior restoration followed, resulting in a house that is an excellent example of how a comfortable family in the region lived in the mid-18th century.

DuBois Fort:

Built circa 1705 for the DuBois family, it might have served as a fortified place for the small community if needed. Originally a smaller 1 1/2 story structure, this building was expanded to its current size in the late 1830’s. Some historians and antiquarians believe that the presence of “gun ports” made it a fort but there is no evidence of the presence of any such portholes before the 19th century. The DuBois Fort currently serves as the orientation center and gift shop as well as a location for special events. Guest can purchase their admission tickets and memberships at this building. Over the last 300 years, it has also been used as a residence and a restaurant.

Historic Huguenot Street I

DeBois House

Freer House:

The Freer House is one of the six 18th century stone houses owned by Historic Huguenot Street. It was altered in various points in its approximately 250 years of occupancy with its most recent major alterations occurring in 1943 when it was purchased by Rev. John Wright Follette, a direct descendant of it s original builder, Hugo Freer. Over the years, the interior was modernized into a 20th century idea of a colonial home. This structure is not currently open to the public.

Deyo House:

The original portion of the house was built around 1720 by Patentee Pierre Deyo. It began as a one room house was subsequently expanded to two rooms and ultimately  to three when a stone addition was added off the rear by Pierre’s grandson Abraham. Circumstances for this house changed dramatically when at the height of the Colonial Revival movement, two descendants  of Pierre Deyo, Abraham and Gertrude Brodhead, inherited the house. Wanting to live on the street of their ancestors but also wanted a modern, gracious home that reflected their affluence, the Brodheads partially dismantled the original stone house and build a grand Queen Anne home around it in 1894. They also significantly changed their surrounding property in essence changing a small village farm into a handsomely appointed and landscaped mini-estate. The house passed out of Deyo family ownership in 1915. It was a private home until 1971, when it was purchased by the Deyo-Family Association and donated in order to be opened to be opened to the public as a house museum. The home was most recently restored in 2003 and features circa 1915 interiors.

The patentee Pierre Deyo died in 1700, so couldn’t have built the house in 1720 as stated. Per the plaque mounted outside the house it was built in 1692.

Crispell Memorial French Church:

Since the community’s founding, there have been four sanctuaries built on what is today called Huguenot Street. The French-speaking Protestants who settled in New Paltz built their first church in 1683-a simple log building. This was replaced in 1717 with a straightforward, square stone building that reflected the permanence of the settlement. This existing building in the burying ground is a highly conjectural reconstructed of the 1717 building near its original location.

As the New Paltz community increased in size throughout the 18th century, a larger church became necessary. A second stone church was built down the street in 1772. When it became too small, it was demolished and replaced by a third church built in 1839. This church survives today and is home to an active Reformed congregation.

The reconstructed church is named in honor of Antoine Crispell, one of the twelve founders or patentees of New Paltz and a direct ancestor of Franklin Delano Roosevelt. It was built as the result of a fundraising campaign led by the Crispell Family Association. The Crispell Family Foundation opted to create this reconstruction church in their ancestor’s honor. It was completed in 1972.

The 1717 church was designed to reflect Reform thinking; the pulpit was placed in a central location and the pews were placed so that everyone could see and hear more equally. This expressed the concept that each person had a direct relationship with God, rather than one mediated through a church hierarchy.

LeFevre House:

Built int 1799 by Ezekiel Elting, a prosperous merchant who was born in the Bevier-Elting House, this stone and brick building is quite different from the earlier stone houses on Huguenot Street. Its Georgian-style architecture reflects the transition of New Paltz from a French and Dutch settlement to an Anglo-American community and increasing refinement in architecture in this period as settlements matured. The house shows the changes in architectural style from the early 18th century. This house reflects the several changes in the society and home life of New Paltz in the early 19th century.

Deyo Hall:

Formerly a glass factory, Deyo Hall is the site of event and meeting facilities and public restrooms. Collections storage is housed in this building.

Roosa House Library and Archives:

Located in the Roosa House, the Library and Archives at Historic Huguenot Street is a research facility devoted primarily to the history and genealogy of the Huguenot and Dutch settlers of the Hudson Valley. It also functions as a general repository for local history, regardless of ethnicity or religious persuasion. The collections consist of family genealogies, church, cemetery and bible records, wills and deeds, census records, genealogical periodicals, county histories and publications relating to Huguenot ancestry. Genealogists, local historians and other interested parties can access the collections by appointment. The colorful paint replicates the original colors of the house in 1891.

Native American presence on Huguenot Street:

Historians and archaeologist have learned more about the continuing relations between the Esopus, the original inhabitants of the area and the Huguenots. Some results of research can be found at the HHS site at “Relations between the Huguenots of New Paltz, NY and the Esopus Indians (http://www.huguenotstreet.org/library_archives/exhibits_research/Indian_affairs.html). The “Before Hudson” exhibit, currently on view at the DuBois Fort Visitor Center, shows some of the highlights of archaeological excavation in our area with artifacts dating back 6,000-8,000 years ago.

Historic Huguenot Street III.jpg

Indian Wigwam

(This information from the homes is from Wiki)

 

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Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art State University of New York at New Paltz  1 Hawk Drive New Paltz, NY 12561

Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art State University of New York at New Paltz 1 Hawk Drive New Paltz, NY 12561

Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art

State University of New York at New Paltz

1 Hawk Drive

New Paltz, NY  12561

(845) 257-3844

http://www.newpaltz.edu/museum

Open: Wednesday-Sunday 11:00am-5:00pm/Closed on Monday & Tuesday

Fee: Suggested fee is $5.00

My review on TripAdvisor:

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g48245-d10130343-Reviews-Samuel_Dorsky_Museum_of_Art-New_Paltz_New_York.html?m=19905

 

Dorsky Museum IV

The Samuel Dorsky Museum on the SUNY Campus

I recently visited the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art in New Paltz, NY and found it to be an interesting little museum that covers a lot of fields of art from ancient art to paintings and photography. The current exhibitions include “Just my Type: Angela Dufresne” and “In Celebration: A Recent Gift from the Photography Collections of Marcuse Pfeifer”. There is also a exhibition of a local institution “Mohonk Mountain House at 150”, which is on the history and progression of the development of the Mohonk Mountain House Hotel.

The Angela Dufresne exhibition was created by the artist of people who are the artist’s friends, family and of her community which are colorful and somewhat exaggerated views of people and their expressions. These giant colorful paintings had different expressions on their faces where you can only guess what the sitters were thinking.

Dorsky Museum III

The Angela Dufresne Exhibition

The photo collection of former gallery owner Marcuse Pfeifer, who has now relocated to the Hudson River Valley addresses the 19th and 20th Century that explore celebrity, location and life in the City. It has some interesting looks of life at a different time as well the expression of the subjects.

The museum offers also objects from the permanent collection and showing the areas in which the museum has collected in the past and currently. There is anything from a Warhol photo to ancient Chinese and Japanese statuary.

Dorsky Museum II

The Museum’s permanent collection

The museum does a lot in a small area and does a nice job promoting up and coming artists.

 

History of the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art:

Mission of the Museum:

Through its collections, exhibitions and public programs. The Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art supports and enriches the academic programs at the university presents a broad range of national and international art for study and enjoyment and serves as a center for the arts and culture of the Hudson Valley.

About the Museum:

Located at the State University of New York at New Paltz. The Dorsky Museum comprises more than 9,000 square feet of exhibition space distributed over six galleries. The museum was launched more than 65 years ago by a dedicated committee of faculty members to enhance the teaching mission of the university. Originally known as the College Art Gallery, The Dorsky Museum was dedicated in 2001. The opening of The Dorsky Museum transformed the original College Art Gallery into one of the leading art museums in the region.

The Dorsky Museum’s permanent collection comprises more than 5,500 works of art from around the world and spans over a 4,000 year time period. While encyclopedic in nature, areas of focus include American art, with an emphasis on the Hudson Valley and Catskill Mountain region, 19th century American prints, photography and contemporary metals. The museum also has a strong World Collection that includes outstanding examples of both two and three-dimensional objects from diverse cultures, dating from classical to modern times.

The museum’s temporary exhibition program has been hailed as one of the best in the region and features exhibitions, installations and projects by internationally recognized artists as well as annual thematic exhibitions of work by regional artists. “The Hudson Valley Masters Series” is one of the unique exhibitions that the museum periodically hosts which focuses specifically on a body of work by an internationally acclaimed artist who resides in the area.

Samuel Dorsky Museum

A painting by Angela Dufresne

Samuel Dorsky:

Samuel Dorsky was a self made and self realized individual who came to the art world relatively late after achieving success in the garment business. Emerging from the Great Depression, World War II and the post war boom years with the desire and the where withal to pursue both art and philanthropic, he opened a art gallery in 1963. Until his death in 1994, his gallery presented hundreds of exhibitions featuring such well-known artists as Henry Moor, about whom Dorsky was a recognized authority, Richard Hunt, Willem De Kooing, Larry Rivers and Robert Rauschenberg. Sam also generously championed the work of numerous lesser-known artists who he often befriended. The Dorsky gallery closed its doors to the public in 2001 after which Sam’s children, David, Noah, Karen and Sara established the Dorsky Gallery Curatorial Programs (DGCP) in Long Island City, a not for profit organization dedicated to promoting contemporary visual arts.

The dedication of the Dorsky Museum brought to fruition a project that had dominated the last decade of Sam Dorsky’s life. Sam’s lead gift to the SUNY New Paltz Foundation provided the impetus for the construction of the new museum building as well as the complete renovation of the former College Art Gallery to become part of the museum. The Dorsky Museum now comprises six galleries, offices and a small teaching space.

The Dorsky family continues to be a major supporter of The Dorsky Museum and SUNY New Paltz. David, Karen and Noah Dorsky serve on the Advisory Board of The Dorsky Museum. Karen and Noah also serve as trustees of the SUNY New Paltz Foundation.

(SUNY New Paltz History)

Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt (Springfield)-National Historic Site  4097 Albany Post Road   Hyde Park, NY 12538

Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt (Springfield)-National Historic Site 4097 Albany Post Road Hyde Park, NY 12538

Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt (Springfield)-National Historic Site

4097 Albany Post Road

Hyde Park, NY  12538

(845) 229-9115

http://www.nps.gov/hofr

https://www.nps.gov/hofr/index.htm

My review on TripAdvisor:

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g60801-d106611-Reviews-Franklin_Delano_Roosevelt_Home-Hyde_Park_New_York.html?m=19905

I have visited the childhood home of Franklin Delano Roosevelt many times over the years. It is an interesting part of not just Hudson River Valley history but of American history.

Parts of the house were built in the late 1700’s and added on later by the families who lived in the house. Franklin D. Roosevelt’s father bought the house and continued to add on to it. Most of the estate is still intact as well as the homes that the President built separate from the main house to give he and his wife some privacy from his mother, Sara Delano Roosevelt, who owned the home until her death.

Visiting Springwood is like a step back in time. Unlike the grand mansions of the Mill’s and Vanderbilt’s up and down Route 9, Springwood looks more like a home just on a larger scale. The self-guided tour takes you through the first story of the house which includes the dining room, living room, sitting rooms and offices of the President and of his mother, who ran the staff and the household.

The house is done in dark woods, representing a time before the Victorian age when the Federalist look was in and the later additions represent the trends in Victorian style. The furnishings were functional and very homey not like the elaborate ‘over the top’ furnishes in some of the other mansions. The Roosevelt’s were old money Hudson River Valley compared to the Vanderbilt’s who money was earned after the Civil War and did not have to prove themselves to Upper Crust Society.

I was impressed with the amount of sporting goods, stuffed animal species and just the general hominess of the house. It looked like someone still lived there. The downstairs area for the servants and the kitchen are functional and not huge. This is a house that was built for a family and for entertainment but not on the scale of the Astor’s or Vanderbilt’s. It ran for a growing family that lived in the house.

Even the upstairs bedrooms looked like any other American home at the time but a touch bigger. I could see by Eleanor’s room that she did not spend much time there. You can see where the adjustments were made when the President developed polio. I am glad that the man showed determination and did not let that stop him in his life. It proved to me that a disability limits you only if you let it.

The grounds were interesting. The formal rose gardens are beautiful when in season and the estate does have views of the river. On the grounds of the estate as well is the Presidential Library, Museum and the grave sites of the President and his wife, Eleanor.

springwood estate

The Springwood Estate

The only problem we faced on our recent visit to the house was that a sweltering heat wave hit the Valley and the humidity hit 98 degrees. The house was boiling hot because they could not open the windows for fresh air and the whole house smelled musty and old. That is the bad part of all that wood trimming and paneling, it does smell when it is hot.

Still it was an interesting tour that takes about 45 minutes and is an important part of the foundation of a very important family.

History of FDR at Springwood:

Franklin’s father, James Roosevelt purchased the 110 acre estate in 1867 for $40,000. The property included a house overlooking the Hudson River and a working farm. FDR was born in the house on January 30, 1882, the only child of Sara and James Roosevelt. Growing up with a view of the majestic Hudson River, he developed a love of the river and the valley through which it flowed. By age eight, he was sailing the Hudson. As a young adult, racing his ice yacht “Hawk” was a favorite winter pastime.

Franklin accompanied his father on daily horseback rides. During these times, he became immersed in the land, its history and particularly the trees. In later years, he expanded his parents’ land holding to nearly 1,500 acres and planted over half a million trees. His interest in tree farming translated into a New Deal program, the Civilian Conservative Corps (CCC). The CCC provided jobs to unemployed men age 17-28. Over 10 years, enrollees planted over three billion trees and built over 800 parks nationwide.

Surrounded by the rich agricultural heritage of the Hudson Valley all his life, FDR felt a strong affinity with farmers. One of the first New Deal programs instituted during the Great Depression, the Agricultural Adjustment Act, was designed to help farmers retain their land. His subsistence homestead projects relocated poverty-stricken families into government subsidized rural communities that provided decent housing, cooperative work and farming and schools.

When Franklin Roosevelt married Eleanor Roosevelt in 1905, they resided in both at Hyde Park and their New York townhouse. Franklin and Eleanor had six children, one who died in infancy. FDR supervised the expansion and redesign of the house to accommodate his growing family and his political ambitions, ensuring it reflected the Dutch Colonial architecture of the Hudson Valley.

FDR contracted polio in 1921 and was paralyzed from the waist down. He held out hope for a cure but was never able to walk again unaided. The multi-level home was adapted to his needs with ramps along the short steps. The trunk lift, installed years before the onset of FDR’s polio became his transportation to the second floor.

In 1932, FDR was elected to the first of an unprecedented four terms as President of the United States. His presidency redefined the role of government in America, establishing programs designed to improve the lives of all Americans. These programs included Social Security, the Federal Deposit and Insurance Corporation, the Securities & Exchange Commission, the establishment of minimum wage and unemployment insurance.

During his 12 years as President, FDR led the nation through an economic crisis of enormous proportions and the Second World War. He continually returned to this home  he loved, seeking strength and relaxation. He entertained foreign dignitaries here including British Prime Minister Winston Churchill. In the small study, FDR and Churchill initiated a document known as the “Hyde Park Aide Memoire”, that outlined possible future uses of the atomic bomb.

On the afternoon of April 12, 1945, FDR died from a cerebral hemorrhage in Warm Springs, GA. He was laid to rest on April 15th in the rose garden here. One year after his death on April 12, 1946, the home was opened to the public. At the dedication, Eleanor Roosevelt said, “I think Franklin realized that people would understand the rest and peace and strength which he gained here and perhaps go away with some sense of healing and courage themselves.”

(Home of Franklin Delano Roosevelt National Historic Site pamphlet)

History of the Springwood:

The estate was part of the 1697 agreement of the English Crown that gave 220 square miles to a group of nine businessmen from New York City. To ensure that everyone had access to the river, the land was divided into “Water Lots”, one of which was deeded to William  Creed, one of the nine partners.

The central part of Springwood is believed to have been formed from a large farmhouse which was constructed around the year 1800 in the Federal style. In 1845, the estate was purchased by Josiah Wheeler, a merchant from New York City. Wheeler undertook a remodeling of the house, giving it a then fashionable Italianate style with a three story town at the south end as well as front and rear piazzas spanning the entire length of the house.

In 1866, the estate which has been reduced to one square mile, James Roosevelt bought the house and expanded the main house adding the servants wing, two more rooms and the carriage house. James Roosevelt passed away in 1900.

In 1915, FDR and his mother, Sara made the final additions and renovations to the house for the growing family and for entertaining political and family friends. Sara Roosevelt used the New York firm of Hoppin & Koen and doubled the size of the house by adding two large fieldstone wings (designed by FDR), a tower and a third story with a flat roof. The clapboard exterior of the house was replaced by stucco and most of the porch was replaced with a fieldstone terrace  with a balustrade and a small columned portico around the entrance. The inside layout of the house was redesigned also to accommodate FDR’s growing collections of books, paintings, stamps and coins.

The grounds were also changed with the planting of almost 400,000 trees all over the estate in a thirty year period. Today large portions  of the estate have been turned over to the Forestry Department of Syracuse University.

(Wiki)

Disclaimer: The history of the Springwood and of FDR are living there was taken from Wiki writings and the pamphlet of The Franklin Delano Roosevelt National Site and I give their writers full credit for the information. Please see the attachments from the National Park site for more information.

Martin Van Buren National Historic Site-Lindenwald-Martin Van Buren Home   1013  Old Post Road Kinderhook, NY 12106

Martin Van Buren National Historic Site-Lindenwald-Martin Van Buren Home 1013 Old Post Road Kinderhook, NY 12106

Martin Van Buren National Historic Site-Lindernwald-Martin Van Buren Home

1013 Old Post Road

Kinderhook, NY  12106

(518) 758-9689 x2040

Open: Sunday-Saturday 9:00am-4:30pm

Admission: See website

https://www.nps.gov/mava/index.htm

https://www.nps.gov/mava/planyourvisit/index.htm

My review on TripAdvisor:

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g60899-d105846-Reviews-Martin_Van_Buren_National_Historic_Site-Kinderhook_New_York.html?m=19905

During the beginning of the Halloween season, I decided to explore the Hudson River Valley mansions while the foliage was out. I had never been as high up as Kinderhook, NY before and I wanted to visit the Martin Van Buren National Historic Site. This was the estate Lindenwald-Martin Van Buren home.

The tour is really informative and discusses our eighth President’s life in Upstate New York. I had not released that he was not born a wealthy man. He was a barkeepers son to Abraham Van Buren and his wife, Maria Hoes. His mother had been married before so he had three half siblings and four other siblings growing up.

He had worked his way through Law School and joined the local political scene of Upstate New York. From the what the tour guide told us, he was a self-made man. He had won the first election but not reelection. His further attempts at Presidency were not successful so after his time in Washington DC, he retired to his home in Kinderhook, NY and remained here until he died in 1862.

When we took the tour, the tour guide said that the house had many other owners after the President’s death and that was the reason why there was not much left in the house. There is period furniture from the time he lived here but not from the President himself. There are a few pieces from the family that were donated later. They even replaced the wallpaper in the dining room that was from the original French company that manufactured it (it seems that they have records going back almost 400 years). The grounds are beautiful with the golden and orange leaves on the trees and what is left of the crops in the back fields. There is also the graves of Peter Van Ness and his wife, the original owners of the house.

The house is not far from downtown Kinderhook so take time to visit the town and the historic sites of the President. There is a lot to see.

History of the Martin Van Buren Home & of President Van Buren:

Kinderhook is most noteworthy for its native son. Martin Van Buren, the eighth President of the United States. Van Buren was born here in 1782 and began his road to the White House as a teenager campaigning for Thomas Jefferson in 1800. Van Buren held many positions in New York State government before becoming a United States senator. in 1821. He was elected President of the United States in 1837 after serving as Secretary of State (1829) and vice-president (1833-1837) in Andrew Jackson’s administration. Van Buren was one of only two men to serve as Vice-President, Secretary of State and President. The other was Thomas Jefferson. Van Buren was the first President to be born as an American citizen. Previous Presidents were born prior to the American Revolution. President Van Buren was an accomplished politician but his Presidency was characterized by the economic hardship of the time-the Panic of 1837.

This banking crisis occurred only five weeks into Van Buren’s Presidency and tarnished his administration. Van Buren ran for reelection in 1844 and seemed to have a advantage for the nomination. However, his opposition to the annexation of Texas contributed to his defeat at the Democratic convention. The nomination eventually went to James Polk. As the question of extending slavery into the territory captured in the Mexican War became heightened, Van Buren broke with his party and ran for the Presidency as a candidate of the Free Soil Party in 1848. Following the campaign of 1848, Van Buren returned to his farm, Lindenwald, where he remained until his death in 1862 from bronchial asthma and heart failure at age seventy-nine.

(Lindenwald-Van Buren Home pamphlet)

Lindenwald House:

The house was built in 1797. The knocker on the old front door of this famous mansion bears the date 1797. This however refers to the building of the small and much less imposing building, which was the beginning of this Mansion and was erected by Peter Van Ness. There was still an earlier house on the place when Peter Van Ness bought it about 1780. The house of 1797 was greatly improved by Judge Van Ness, a son and still more improved and enlarged by Mr. Van Buren on his return from Washington when he named it ‘Lindenwald’.

Many of the most distinguished men of the period of the Van Ness and Van Buren families entertained here, among whom were Henry Clay, Washington Irving and Samuel Tilden.

Lindenwald is situated about two miles south of Kinderhook on the Old Post Road from New York City to Albany and sits about 400 to 500 feet back from the road, surrounded by old fir and pine trees. Two separate drive ways lead up to the house.

The house is brick, painted yellow and seven windows wide. The main building had two stories and a large garret. Three chimneys rise above this main or front part of the house, two to the north and a wide one to the south. The middle of the front is pedimented and there is a dormer on each side of the gable, which in the bedroom story below has a large triple central window with a curved pedimental top and two windows on each side. The two windows on the south side are in the room where Van Buren died.

Before the center of the main story is a small covered portico with an easy flight of steps and balusters. To the left is the living room or double parlor to the right the sitting room and dining room.

The oblong house is four windows deep on the north side. A colonnade or arched porch separates it from a domestic building, mainly kitchen and laundry. This undoubtedly was the Peter Van Ness original home. The library was added in the rear of the south side by Mr. Van Buren and next to this he built a tower, like a donjan keep with an Italian summit, the openings few and slitted; the object, stateliness and the view.

Beyond the front door is a fine straight hall. The four doors opening off of it are of early carpentry. At the rear, nearly concealed in the side of the hall under sort of an alcove is the stairway, wide and low and long stepped. The main feature of the hall, is the foreign wallpaper in large landscapes, representing hunters on horseback and with guns and dogs breaking into Rhenish vales, where milkmaids are surprised and invite flirtation, the human figures are nearly a foot high, the mountains and woods, rocks and streams, panoramic the colors dark and loud.

After the death of President Van Buren the house was sold several times.

(Lindenwald-Wiki)

 

 

Staatsburgh (The Mills Mansion) 75 Mills Mansion Drive Staatsburg, NY 12580

Staatsburgh (The Mills Mansion) 75 Mills Mansion Drive Staatsburg, NY 12580

Staatsburgh (The Mills Mansion)

75 Mills Mansion Drive

Staatsburgh, NY  12580

http://www.facebook.com/staatsburghSHS

Open: Thursday-Sunday: 11:00am-5:00pm

TripAdvisor Review:

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g48676-d107418-Reviews-Staatsburgh_State_Historic_Site_Mills_Mansion-Staatsburg_New_York.html?m=19905

Hours: Open Thursday-Sunday: 11:00am-5:00pm (the last tour is at 4:00pm)/Open Monday Holidays from April 19th to October 28th. The mansion then closes to prepare for the holiday season. Closed on Thanksgiving and Easter. There are special programs from January to April so please see the website.

Admission: $8.00 for adults/$6.00 for groups and Seniors/Children under 12 are free. Special events have separate fees and can run from $8.00 to $10.00 and above.

I have been a Friend of the Mills Mansion for about four years and have attended many special events at the mansion including their Afternoon Tea & Lectures, the Annual Meeting and Talk, The Holiday Party and most recently the Isadora Duncan Dance and Reception. Their events are a lot of fun and are very engaging. It also includes a tour of the mansion which is very interesting. Try to get on one of their theme tours.

Their Special Events:

I recently attended their Summer fundraiser “Sunset on the Terrace”, an evening of cocktails, appetizers and music. On a beautiful sunny evening, there is nothing like it. We were entertained by the Perry Beekman Trio with an assortment of jazz music while passed hot and cold appetizers were passed around the room. It is a relaxing night of light food and cocktails and wine while chatting with members as the sun sets on the mansion’s terrace. Now I know why the Mills loved this house so much.

Another event I have attended over the past few years has been their “Christmas Cocktail Party” that is held in the formal dining room which is decorated for a Victorian Christmas. What is nice is that everyone is dressed in suits or tuxes for the evening and like its Summer counterpart, it is a evening of light appetizers both passed and on the tables, light desserts and an assortment of wines from a local vineyard.

The “Winter Lectures & Teas” have gotten more interesting over the years. The tables are laden with tea sandwiches, scones and small cakes and the Staatsburg blend of tea. They are always refilling everything for you and I have seen some big eaters at the table. The lectures this year were on various subjects taking place during the Victorian era that included “Bicycling and the Women’s Movement”, “Masquerade Balls during the Season” and “Etiquette & Calling Cards during a Social Visit” by visiting lecturers from colleges or local historians. These are a nice afternoon of good food and interesting discussion.

All of these can be seen on the organization’s website.

History:

In 1792, Morgan Lewis, the third Governor of New York, purchased an estate covering of about 334 acres and commissioned the construction of a colonial-style house on the site of the present mansion. In 1832, the first house was destroyed by fire, said to be the act of arson committed by disgruntled tenant farmers.

The current home, originally built in 1832 and greatly expanded in the 1890’s, the Mills Mansion (also known as Staatsburgh) is emblematic of the great country estates built in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries to house America’s wealthiest families.

Staatsburgh is a New York State Historic Site located withing the boutonnieres of Mills-Norrie State Park. It is an elegant example of the great estates built by America’s financial and industrial leaders during the Gilded Age.

A 25 room Greek Revival structure was built on the site in 1832 by Morgan Lewis and his wife, Gertrude Livingston, replacing an earlier house that had burned down. This second house was inherited by Ruth Livingston Mills, wife of noted financier and philanthropist Ogden Mills.

In 1895, Mr. and Mrs. Mills commissioned the prestigious New York City architectural firm of McKim, Mead and White to remodel and enlarge their Staatsburgh home. After the completion in 1896, the house was transformed into a Beaux-Arts mansion of 65 rooms and 14 bathrooms. Its exterior was embellished with balustrades, pilasters, floral swags and a massive portico. The rooms were furnished with elaborately carved and gilded furniture, fine oriental rugs, silk fabrics and a collection of art objects from Europe, ancient Greece and the Far East.

In 1938, the house and 192 acres were given to the State of New York by Gladys Mills Phipps, the daughter of Ruth and Ogden Mills. The estate is now operated by the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. In 1988, the Friends of Mills Mansion were organized to support the preservation and educational work at the site.

(Friends of the Mills Mansion Website)

Design:

The outside of the mansion features a massive portico, balustrades, pilasters and floral festoons. The central part of the mansion is layered into a basement, three floors and an attic. In the north and south wings, there is a subbasement, a basement and two floors. Ceilings in the older part of the building dating prior to the enlargement (the first floor of the central part) are about 14 feet high, whereas the ceilings of the later construction (first floor of the north and south wings) can be about 18 feet high. The interior of the building is decorated in French styles of the 17th and 18th century. However, some architectural elements of the previous home have been preserved in the process.

Preservation:

The Mills Mansion poses several challenges to preservation: On the outside, a gray sprayed concrete finish which was added later as a preservation measure need to be removed and replaced with a more suitable surface treatment. At the same time, the decorative cornice and many decorative elements need to be either restored or replaced. On the inside of the building, wall paint and furnishings fabrics are in need of replacement, marble and wooden surfaces need to be cleaned and the objects of the mansion’s collection need to be conserved.

(Wiki Website)