Issue Date:
Authors:

Vivian Yess Wadlin

Local History Books

Just in time for holidays and stay-cations, we have three books of local history to enjoy. A.J. Schenkman and Elizabeth (Libby) Werlau bring you Ulster County ripped from the headlines. Okay, so most of the crimes were a while ago. Regardless, human nature is not a pretty picture as painted in Murder & Mayhem in [Read More…]

Spans of Time

You might think the newly opened span in Rosendale is just a junior act following Walkway Over the Hudson. You would be wrong. The Wallkill Valley Rail Trail (WVRT) bridge over the Rondout Creek is an intimate experience with different construction and a very different history running its course. There is much to see and [Read More…]

Harvesting Memory

Ulster’s harvest has changed dramatically in the past 70 years. Growing up on what had been my grandparents’ farm at the intersection of the towns of Esopus, New Paltz, and Lloyd, we were surrounded by dairy, poultry, and fruit farms. In the 1940s my father turned away from farming to work as a heavy equipment [Read More…]

Greetings from New Paltz circa 1915

               

Gomez Mill House

Few buildings can boast the varied American stories that took place in the Gomez Mill House. You’ll meet five important families whose tenancy spanned not just the centuries, but impacted important epochs of history in ways that continue to reverberate. In 1654, Luis Moses Gomez’s ancestors fled the tyranny of the Spanish Inquisition. In 1705, [Read More…]

Time Honored II

With this issue of About Town, we are well into our 30th year of publication. Last issue we honored some of the business with whom we have been proud to associate over the decades. Here we highlight more area businesses that have proven their value to their customers and clients —they are “time-tested” as well [Read More…]

Local History Books Reviewed

Marlborough On My Mind Marylou Mahan’s book, Marlborough On My Mind, published in 2009, is broken in to handy bite-size chapters and subchapters covering everything from education, spiritual life, famous and infamous individuals, local families, work, and finally, it brings us up to the planning for the quadricentennial celebration of Hudson’s trip up the river. [Read More…]

Bertolozzi’s Bridge Music

After you’ve strolled over Walkway Over The Hudson, drive or walk to Haviland Road’s abrupt end at the Mid Hudson Bridge. There, be prepared for Bertolozzi’s percussive serenade, known simply as “Bridge Music.” Composer Bertolozzi’s amazing offering uses only the sounds he produced by striking different structural parts, cables, railings, beams, of the Mid Hudson [Read More…]

Time Honored

As we at About Town celebrate the start of our 30th year, we honor other area businesses that have proven their value to you year after year, one year at a time, one customer at a time. It is amazing how many are still owned and run by the same families that founded them. We [Read More…]

Lilly

Ten years ago, SUNY New Paltz Professor Bill Rhoads asked me if I knew the location of “Rock Nest,” the Highland (Town of Lloyd) home of artist Lilly Martin Spencer. I did not, nor was I familiar with the artist. As it turns out, I should have been, and for a number of reasons. From [Read More…]

Greetings from Stone Ridge

Ridgley Manor was built for Francis A. Leggette. The grounds were designed by Frederick Olmstead. Postcards like this were used by summer boarders living in assorted outbuildings. Their rents contributed to keeping the estate’s expenses in line. Two cards in my collection are from 1908 and 1909 and indicate senders stayed there, probably in the [Read More…]

Collecting Postcards

An About Town reader in Chicago sent me a magazine article about postcard collecting. Since I am of (mostly) Austrian ancestry, it was interesting to note that postcards were invented in the Austro-Hungarian empire around the time of our Civil War, (probably more correctly called the War of Secession?). The article went on to say [Read More…]

SUNY Ulster Built-In Our County’s History

SUNY Ulster is something of a “family affair.” In 1965, my father, Louis Yess, guided his bulldozer to rough out the road that would commence the building of the current Ulster County Community College. Ten years later, I graduated from that school. My husband, John Wadlin, served as Chairman, and in other positions, of the [Read More…]

Imagining John Pizzo

It’s hard to imagine that a man could live on a farm for a hundred years and not have been born there. A man, over 100, who has no need of glasses to read this print, a man, over 100, who has an impish smile filled with perfect, natural teeth. It’s hard to imagine a [Read More…]

A Tribute to Sam

Several years ago Sam Quimby asked the owners of the Ship Lantern Inn for permission to place a historical marker on their property along Old Indian Road in Marlboro to indicate the road’s use by native Americans. Sam then proposed underwriting and installing the marker to the Marlborough Historical Society. After Sam passed away in [Read More…]

Practically Paradise

Pack up all your cares and… whoa! grab your picnic basket. Have I got a great place for you! In addition to the delightful places to picnic highlighted in Lindsay Pietroluongo’s article, there are two more not to be missed. Both are in West Park, west of Route 9W off Floyd Ackert Road. Fittingly, a series [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…]