“Housatonic in the 70s: Examining the Culture” An Oral History Podcast

The hills are alive with oral history and Housatonic Valley Regional High School student intern Valerie has mined student interviews with alumni from the 1970s to create a rich and thought-provoking podcast that explores the concept of culture within the school, the local community, and society at large. Valerie observes, “Even though I’ve lived in this area for my entire life, I’ve always questioned how small and secluded these towns really are. It wasn’t until I got to high school, met new students and HVRHS […]

By |History|

The Parla Foster House: A Brief History

At the corner of Rts. 22 and 23 sits an imposing brick house built circa 1783-1790 by a man named Parla Foster.

Although the house is listed in the Historic Hillsdale Resource Survey as being in the Federal style, it does not exhibit strong Federal characteristics. David Gallager, a local decorative arts expert and amateur architectural historian, considers the house to be a classic example of the Georgian style, noting “The Palladian windows are typical Georgian features, seen in many Columbia County grand homes such as […]

By |History|

Blog for the Common Man

It can be tempting to think of our town history in terms of its founding fathers, historic houses, and seminal events. But like the history of most small towns, those people, places and occasions serve as punctuation marks in the text of otherwise ordinary lives.

While Hillsdale, NY, indeed has had its share of larger-than-life figures, it was the citizens who did not make it into the history books who made Hillsdale into the place we love today. A case in point would be Thomas I. […]

By |History|

Women’s History Month: The Night that A Nazi Bomb Did Not Drop on Copake Falls, and Other Stories of Copake Women in Power

By Howard Blue

Thanks to a congressional proclamation in 1987, March is Women’s History month. The designation came about as a result of the short shrift that women have traditionally gotten in many ways. Until 1839, for example, no American woman could own property. Then, in that year, Mississippi gave its female residents that right. Until 100 years ago this year, women could not vote in federal elections.

In the past women were also often denied both admission to institutions of higher learning for which they were […]

By |History|