Mockup of highway route markers that will lead to key sites (Jessica Breslin)
Lesson Plans (Sara Heller)
Website links to all websites that you can find about your county
Group Works Cited
Overview of Putnam County
Putnam County is an integral part of New York State and of the development of the United States of America because of its contributions through history, heritage, art, culture, and nature preservation. Putnam County, New York was originally settled by the Wappingers tribe and purchased by Dutch settlers in 1691. In 1697, the Dutch sold the land to Adolph Philipse, a wealthy loyalist merchant, who patented it the same year. Putnam County was established and named after Israel Putnam: a famous hero from the French and Indian War and general during the Revolutionary War. After the war, many loyalist families left the Hudson Highlands. This allowed for an influx of immigrants. By 1812, the area’s population had increased substantially. According to the 1860 census, the population was 14,084. The majority of the new settlers were famers or farm laborers. Today, Putnam County is rich with colonial history, suburban beauty, and modern conveniences.
Putnam County hosts an array of historical sites, museums, art galleries, community events, and nature preserves. Some of the most notable sites include the West Point Foundry, Borden’s Milk Factory, Constitution Island, the Boscobel Mansion Restoration, and Manitoga: the Russel Wright Design Center. These sites are important because they contributed to the Civil War efforts, the growth of the county’s economy, and the unique natural beauty that Putnam County is known for. These influential sites draw many tourists who can easily access Putnam County being that it is located on the Hudson River and only an hour north of New York City.
Visitors are guided through Putnam County by the use of historical signs along main highways such as the Taconic Parkway, Interstate 84, Route 9 and Interstate 87. In addition to preexisting highway signs, team four has provided alternative options which make both highway and individual sight signs more appealing and functional for sightseers. Our team believes that informational plaques describing the influence of individual Putnam County towns would also be beneficial for visitors. These signs would be posted in high traffic areas within the city center. Another resource currently offered to tourists is the Putnam County historical society which is located at the Foundry School Museum in Cold Spring.
Presently, the population of Putnam County continues to increase because of its ideal location and atmosphere. Putnam County is home to approximately 99,710 people, as opposed to 14, 084 people in 1860. Putnam County serves as a satellite community of New York City. The Metro North Railroad provides convenient transportation for all commuters. The majority of Putnam County residents whose work resides within the county focus on providing health care and social assistance. Putnam County truly has something for everybody: easy city access, rich history, thriving culture, suburban beauty and modern conveniences.
Historical Description: The West Point Foundry in Cold Spring, NY, was one of the earliest and far reaching iron works in the country. “It began its operations in 1817 and continued through the 1880’s” (Yasinsac). President Madison subsidized it in 1812. The Foundry created job opportunities as well as the production of steam engines, ironclad ships, weaponry, pipes for the water system of New York City and much more. The foundry was responsible for producing mass quantities of the “parrot gun”. This gun is a rifled cannon and at its time it was the most accurate and furthest shooting weapon. This weapon helped the Union Army win the Civil War. Today, the Foundry grounds have been preserved, but trails have been made available for visitors to walk the grounds
The Site: “After foundry operations ceased in 1911, nature gradually reclaimed the land. Today woodland trails follow old rail beds and pass extensive ruins of the casting house, boring mill and other essential foundry buildings that led to the preserve's inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places. While Scenic Hudson works to create a heritage park telling the story of the site's past and the cleanup that led to its ecological renewal, West Point Foundry Preserve remains a marvelous place to escape today's bustle and connect with the Hudson Highlands' astonishingly diverse wildlife.” On site tourists can participate in: bird watching, dog walking, hiking, tours, and picnicking.
Directions: In Cold Spring, go west on Main St., then left on Rock St. and right on Kemble Ave. Park entrance is at the end of Kemble Ave.
2. Constitution Island
“Our mission is to provide a rewarding, educational, and recreational experience by the commemoration and preservation of the historic, literary, legendary, artistic traditions, and the ecological treasure that is represented by Constitution Island and the Hudson River Valley.”
West Point, NY 10996
email@example.com Historical Description:
Constitution Island, which can be seen from Boscobel Mansion, is a historical site which brings history to life. The Island is a part of West Point Military Academy and is protected and preserved by the Constitution Island Association. During the Revolutionary War, a chain was stretched from the island to West Point to block British ships from coming in. The island was supposed to be the location of “Fort Constitution”. However, when the British were coming up the Hudson River with Sir Henry Clinton, American soldiers destroyed the beginning works of the fort and left. It was never rebuilt, but instead forts were built at West Point. The island is also home to the Warner House. The Warner family, who were well known writers, lived there from 1836 to 1915. The home was turned into a museum and along with the Island can be visited today.
The Site: Constitution Island is part of West Point, the United States Military Academy, and a National Registered Landmark. The Island is most famous for the Great Chain that was placed across the Hudson during the Revolutionary War and the Warner family who lived on the Island during the 19th century. The Warner House and ruins of the Revolutionary War fortifications are the primary points of interest. The Island’s 280 acres are covered with hiking trails that are enjoyed by the Island’s visitors. The Constitution Island Association was founded in 1916 to preserve and protect the history and traditions of this unique American site.
Directions: From New York City
Take the George Washington Bridge (upper deck) to the Palisades Parkway North.
Take the PIP to the end, follow signs to Bear Mountain / West Point.
Proceed to the Bear Mountain traffic circle.
Follow signs for Route 9W North / West Point (3rd exit off circle).
Take the West Point / Highland Falls exit.
Follow signs towards the visitor’s center until reaching Thayer Gate (South Gate).
The Thayer Hotel is just beyond the gate on the right.
Proceed through the security checkpoint.
Turn right at the stop sign onto Williams Road.
At the bottom of the hill is the Hudson River and South Dock.
Historical Description: An industrial and historical site which can be visited today is Borden’s Milk Factory. In 1856, Gail Borden patented his invention for condensing milk. This allowed milk to last longer due to its inability to spoil in a specially vacuumed container (“Borden Milk”). In 1857, Borden founded the New York Condensed Milk Company. It was in 1864 that Borden built a factory in Brewster. This factory brought employment opportunities and helped boost the local economy. During the Civil War, there was a high demand for the condensed milk and this gave Putnam County a way to benefit financially and help in the war.
The Site: The museum, which was founded in 1963, is located in the 1896 Old Town Hall building of Southeast. The museum displays nine exhibits which are available for tours. One of these is the Borden’s Milk Factory Exhibit. In this exhibit, recipes and the history of the factory are provided.
Directions: “Located approximately 60 miles north of New York City, the village of Brewster is conveniently accessible by car or the Harlem Line of Metro North Railroad. The Southeast Museum is located on Main Street, Brewster (Route 6), a short drive from exit 10 off I684, or exit 20 off I84, and a five-minute walk from the train station. Metered parking is available on Main Street.”
4. Boscobel Restoration Mansion
“One of the most beautiful homes ever built in America…”
Boscobel Restoration Mansion: A House Museum of the Federal Period
1601 Route 9D
Hudson Valley | Garrison, NY 10524
Days Boscobel is open every day except: Tuesdays, Sunday May 15, 2011, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.
The museum and grounds are closed to the public January, February and March.
Hours April through October: 9:30am – 5pm (Last tour begins at 4:00 pm)
November and December: 9:30am – 4pm (Last tour begins at 3:00 pm)
Admission House, Exhibition & Grounds Adult $16
Senior (62+) $13
Children (6-14) $8
Children (under 6) Free
Family of Four $40
Additional $7 per person
Grounds Only Adults $9
Seniors (62+) $8
Children (6-14) $5
Children (under 6) Free
Family of Four $25
Additional $5 per person
*No pets allowed.
Service dogs permitted.
Phone: (845) 265-3638
Boscobel is a neoclassical style mansion (built 1804-1808) located on a bluff overlooking the Hudson River about fifty miles north of New York City. Boscobel was initially located in Montrose, New York, about fifteen miles south of the present site, with views overlooking the Hudson River at Haverstraw Bay. It was constructed by States Morris Dyckman (1755-1806), a successor of one of the early Dutch families of New Amsterdam. As a Loyalist during the American Revolution, States became a clerk for the British Army's Quartermaster Department in New York. On May 21, 1961, the reconstructed home of States and Elizabeth Dyckman was formally opened to the public. Governor of New York, Nelson A. Rockefeller, considers Boscobel to be "one of the most beautiful homes ever built in America." Currently, Boscobel is known as one of the nation's leading historic house museums. This mansion features an important collection of decorative arts from the Federal period with high-style furniture by Duncan Phyfe and other recognized New York cabinetmakers of the day. Many of States Dyckman's original purchases of English china, silver, glass and part of his library have also survived and are on exhibit in the mansion.
The Site: On –site, for an additional fee, one can enhance their visit with a specialty tour. The descriptions of the tours are according to the official website.
Teatime Tour – Complete with tea sandwiches, pastries and an assortment of teas, tour guests relax in our Thompson Room* for an elegant repast before or after their house tour.
Sandwich, Salad & Sights Tour - Your group will enjoy a selection of boxed luncheons provided by a local caterer and delivered in time for a picnic-style lunch on our grounds. (Weather permitting.)
Champagne In The Rose Garden Tour - After your house tour, enjoy a late afternoon reception in Boscobel's circular rose garden, complete with champagne and light hors d'oeuvres. (Weather permitting.)
Costumed Tours- On the last Friday of every month, Boscobel's docents dress in various period costumes to guide visitors through Boscobel House on an interactive, interpretive tour. They explain life and times of the 1800s and share "inside stories" of the Dyckman family. Step back in time for a fresh perspective on past & present life.
Private Tours– Just for you or you and your guests, Boscobel offers private house tours. These exclusive 1.5-hour tours are intended as a more personal experience for visitors and can focus on select features of Boscobel House, such as architecture, furniture, textiles, etc. Special rates apply and must be booked in advance with Boscobel’s Group Tour Coordinator: firstname.lastname@example.org or 845.265.3638 x13
From Manhattan and New Jersey: Upper level George Washington Bridge to Palisades Parkway north to Bear Mt. Bridge to Route 9D. From Long Island: Throggs Neck or Whitestone Bridge to I-287 to Taconic State Parkway north. Taconic to the Cold Spring, Route 301 west exit. Take Route 301 into the village of Cold Spring. Turn left at the traffic light at the intersection with Route 9D and follow south for one mile. Boscobel is clearly marked on the right. Boscobel is an approximate 1 hour 20 min. drive from NYC.
House & Landscape Tours May through October
Selected weekdays at 11am
Saturdays and Sundays at 11am and 1:30pm
Advance reservations are required for all tours.
Purchase tickets at brownpapertickets.org beginning March 15.
*Group Tours are available by appointment only.
Please contact the office to arrange special tours.
Phone: Call: 845-424-3812 or email email@example.com
The beauty of Putnam County comes to life at Manitoga, The Russell Wright Design Center. Russell Wright, a great designer, built this home and landscape in Garrison, NY. Wright revolutionized the American home and the way people lived there. “His inexpensive, mass produced dinnerware, furniture, appliances, and textiles were not only visually and technically innovative, but were also the tools to achieve his concept of "easier living," a unique American lifestyle that was gracious yet contemporary and informal.” Its name means “a place in great spirit” in Algonquin and was named for symbolism of his respect for the earth (“Historic Sites”). Manitoga is the only twentieth century modern home site in New York that is open to the public. It is now a National Historic Landmark and the beauty of the home is embodied by its interaction with nature.
Influential mid-20th Century designer, Russel Wright's studio at Manitoga in Garrison, NY is now open for public tours after extensive restoration. The Studio, adjacent to Wright's dramatic modernist home, Dragon Rock, is shown substantially as it appeared in 1962.
The public entrance to Manitoga is located in the heart of New York's Hudson Highlands, 50 miles north of Manhattan in Garrison, NY. Manitoga is on Route 9D, 2.5 miles north of the Bear Mountain Bridge and 2 miles south of Route 403.
Accessible from Taconic Parkway, Palisades Parkway, NY State Thruway/I-87 and I-84.
*Manitoga is on Route 9D in Garrison, NY, 4 miles south of Cold Spring and 2.5 miles north of the Bear Mountain Bridge.
"Borden's Milk." Welcome to the Southeast Museum. Web. 01 Oct. 2011.