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Wilson’s Other Stories

Continued from Somewhere Between Here and Kingston.   Another swimming topic and some other random memories from Wilson Tinney were sent in the following email. Editor has added the information shown in italics to give background to Wilson’s information.   “Speaking of swimmers, there was a fellow, Al Melville, who used to put on a [Read More…]

12 Plattekill Avenue, New Paltz

New Paltz is old. We know that because it has the stone houses of Huguenot Street and the Elting Memorial Library building on Main. With this rich “stone house history” we often overlook other interesting 19th century structures in our village. Many of these still gracefully serve us in a variety of ways. To honor [Read More…]

Bees, Frogs, Toads, Bats, & Trees

This is a “bad news–good news” kind of story. There is no sugar coating the threats to some of our valuable and/or adorable friends with whom we share this dirt patch in the universe. Now, yes, entire branches on the tree of evolution have come and gone, leaving little or no trace. We did not [Read More…]

Built for the Ages

“It is our hope that The United Methodist Church of Milton and Marlboro will continue to serve as a beacon of light in our communities for many generations to come.”   As the War of 1812 between Great Britain and the experiment in freedom known as America started, a more hopeful endeavor occupied a pious [Read More…]

Three New Local History Books Plus One Not So New

About Town of Ulster County’s focus is local history. Two-thousand-eleven has provided an embarrassment of riches for us as history buffs. The books pictured above are just the latest in a growing stream of good reading and viewing provided by local researchers and writers. Stephen Laden, who was the director of the Trolley Museum in [Read More…]

Winter Hikes

Skip the Winter Blues by soaking up sun and staying active year-round. New Yorkers may not be able to jog outside in shorts and a tank during December like West Coast-ers can, but Southern Ulster County is abundant in hiking trails and nature preserves. Winter hiking lovers will argue that the best time of year [Read More…]

The Civil War’s Ulster Guard

The Civil War was like most arguments — each side had its points, and both the Union soldiers and the Confederates faced off confidently and steadfastly. Modern day history buffs, military servicemen (and women), and bored college students can all make up their minds about which side they would have fought for based on their [Read More…]

Feats of Clay

The natural clay deposits along the Hudson were just one more resource awaiting the entrepreneurial spirit to turn earth-formed materials into fortunes. Rich farm land, blue stone, limestone, peat, Shawangunk grit, timber, furs, scenic beauty, fresh air, water power, potable water, ice, and more provided the raw materials to build an individual’s prosperity—and the nation’s. [Read More…]

Bee Ready

In late March the native mason bees begin to emerge to begin their brief fruitful lives. They are one of nature’s best pollinators and will give you hours of enjoyment watching them come and go bringing food and mud to feed and protect their next generation. Harmless and amusing and easy to lure to your [Read More…]

Ulster Bounty

The first thing newcomers notice about Ulster County is how green it is—how trees fill every vista. It is said there are more trees here now than 100 years ago. With a land and water area of 1,161 square miles, Ulster boasts some of the largest tracks of woodlands and forested areas in New York. [Read More…]

Inspired Architecture

For many of us, the soul of religious architecture is the achievement of an element soaring upward, lifting us from this mortal coil. Rarely do we see a building dedicated to one’s God that does not have an arch or spire—some symbolic element visible from the distance beckoning supporters to “come home.” If the effect [Read More…]

Loyd — Centerville: Reflections of a Forgotten Hamlet

When determining land boundaries, surveyors tell us there must be a “point of beginning.” That said, we turn our attention to the township of New Paltz. But first, a little bit of history. The late Beatrice Hasbrouck Wadlin, former town historian, stated in her book, Times and Tales of the Town of Lloyd: “Prior to [Read More…]

Walkway To The Hamlet of Highland’s History

Walkway Over The Hudson strollers and cyclists can now continue their exploration of the Hudson Valley by following the paved Hudson Valley Rail Trail west, passing under Route 9W, and taking the exit that brings them to the Hamlet of Highland. The exit is just west of the 9W underpass, and leads up to Tillson [Read More…]

Esopus Turns 200

The colorful and inspirational individuals who lived in, and often shaped, the Town of Esopus over the past two hundred years have included a former slave, ship captains, millionaires, preachers, a presidential candidate, a world-renown naturalist, world-shaping entrepreneurs, a world-famous walker, and many philanthropists. Below are a few.   Truth Today, the Town of Esopus [Read More…]

Milling About

I asked my dear 93-year-old friend, Wilson Tinney, what he remembered about mills in Ulster County. “Wherever there was flowing water there were mills,” was his reply. In researching this article, I find he did not exaggerate. Carpet mills, paper mills, saw mills, powder mills, grist mills, cider mills, cement mills, carding mills, knife mills, [Read More…]

A Conversation with the Quimby Brothers of Marlboro

On March 11, 1888, no one knew the falling flakes were anything more than a late-season snow. But by March 14th, everyone knew it was destined for the record books. It was the “Blizzard of ’88.” Phoebe Baxter Quimby of Marlboro was concluding a visit to nearby Plattekill. To make it home, Phoebe’s brothers ended [Read More…]

Ulster County Station Stops

For all the train buffs eagerly awaiting the release of Glendon Moffett’s* new book on the historic rail lines of Ulster County, (with a working title of Five Historic Railroads of Ulster County), I make this humble offering of station images from my postcard collection. Glendon’s book should be out in early April and will [Read More…]

Oscar Lyons

About a hundred yards east of Cliff Inn, near what is now the Minnewaska State Park Preserve entrance, a black shale unpaved road branched off to the right from the highway and looped back around to the highway about a half-mile later. Midway on the loop Lyons Road went off to the right and dead [Read More…]

The Testimonial GateWay

  Located just 1.3 miles west of the New Paltz village on 299, the Testimonial Gateway has delighted residents and puzzled visitors since its completion in October 1908. Honoring the 50th Wedding Anniversary of Albert and Eliza Smiley, founders of Mohonk Mountain House, the gateway was built from the contributions of 1200 friends of the [Read More…]

Charity Begins… at the Mary and John Arbuckle Farm

A New York Times’ article of 1903 tells of a $12,000 purchase by John Arbuckle of 282 acres of farm land in New Paltz, NY. According to the late Peter Harp’s Horse and Buggy Days, the first purchase by Arbuckle was of the Deyo Farm, and shortly after he purchased the Helena Smedes’ and six [Read More…]