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Read about these places and more…
The Valley Cottage Library has a variety of books about New York and Rockland County history and other titles about places to see and the people associated with our county.
Here are a few about the places and people I’ve mentioned. You'll find others in the catalog that are at Valley Cottage and other area libraries that you can requested. Some older, specialized local history titles may be non-circulating and need to be used only in the library.
50 Hikes in the Lower Hudson Valley by
Publication Date: 2019-06-11
With hikes of all types and difficulties from lower Westchester County to the Shawangunks,50 Hikes in the Lower Hudson Valley has something for hikers of every experience level. Each hike provides a difficulty rating, approximate walking time, distance, vertical rise, maps, and trailhead GPS coordinates outlined at the beginning of the chapter, and provides tips and suggestions for getting to the trail, resting, and observing views throughout the hike. Whether the reader is heading to the nature center and wildflower sanctuary at Teatown Lake Reservation, trekking through dense woods and observing interesting boulders on the Breakneck Mountain Loop, or taking in the spectacular views of mighty Storm King, 50 Hikes in the Lower Hudson Valley is the ideal guide.
Amc's Best Day Hikes in the Catskills and Hudson Valley by
Publication Date: 2011-04-12
With more than 600 miles of trails within just a few hours of New York City, the Catskills and Hudson Valley are a hiker’s paradise, boasting varied and scenic terrain from Westchester County to Albany. This fully updated guide leads beginner and experienced hikers alike along 60 of the region’s most spectacular trails, from shorter nature walks to longer day hikes. From classic hikes like Storm King Mountain in the Hudson Highlands, to carriage road walks in the Shawangunks and a historic walk around the grounds of Oleana, to 25 Catskills hikes such as Wittenberg and Cornell Mountains, to ridgewalks along the Taconic Range, this guide offers a variety of trails for all ability levels and interests. An at-a-glance chart highlights the best hikes near public transportation, for kids, and for winter snowshoeing and skiing.
American Cicero by
Publication Date: 2017-11-09
The new bridge was named after this New York governor, Mario Cuomo. He was the most important Democratic officeholder during the Reagan era. The three-term governor of New York was also a famously eloquent defender of the Democratic Party's progressive legacy even as conservatives gained political power across the nation. As liberalism's most powerful and eloquent defender of the New Deal's legacy, he found a wide and receptive audience well beyond his home state of New York. Yet he never ran for president. Ambar traces Cuomo's rise from the rough-and-tumble world of New York City politics to liberal champion. Moving from his youth in an immigrant neighborhood in Queens to his final years in Albany, Ambar argues that Cuomo kept the spent embers of liberalism alive in an era of conservative dominance. Yet his decision not to run for president arguably hastened the end of his political career. He was voted out of gubernatorial office in 1994 in a nationwide Republican wave. Whatever clinched his decision not to run, Cuomo's impassioned advocacy for liberalism nevertheless had a measurable impact on twenty-first century Democratic progressives.
The Execution of Major Andre by
Publication Date: 2001-10-01
John Andre was a handsome, well-bred poet, playwright, actor, and party-goer, But Andre was also the dilettante spymaster for Britain with a vast Loyalist network. Walsh tells the story of Andre's role in American history and the part that took place in Rockland County.
Hiking New York's Lower Hudson Valley by
Publication Date: 2018-04-01
From the High Line on Manhattan's West Side to the historic Copake Iron Works in Taconic State Park, Hiking New York's Lower Hudson Valley features the best hiking routes between New York City and Albany, including several in the Catskills and western Connecticut. Veteran hikers Randi and Nic Minetor provide all the information you'll need to follow their suggested routes in their guide.
History of Rockland County by
Publication Date: 1989-08-01
Originally published in 1886 and reprinted by the Historical Society of Rockland County, this title covers the early years of Rockland County history. with a personal name index compiled by the Historians's Roundtable of Rockland County.
History of Rockland County, New York by
Publication Date: 1986-12-01
Originally published in 1884 and reprinted by the Historical Society of Rockland County this volume also has an added personal name index.
The Hudson by
Publication Date: 2005-10-30
This book traces the course of the river through four centuries, recounting the stories of explorers and traders, artists and writers, entrepreneurs and industrialists, ecologists and preservationists--those who have been shaped by the river as well as those who have helped shape it. Their compelling narratives attest to the Hudson River's distinctive place in American history and the American imagination. Among those who have figured in the history of the Hudson are Benedict Arnold, Alexander Hamilton, Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt, the Astors and the Vanderbilts, and Thomas Cole of the Hudson River school. Their stories appear here, alongside those of such less famous individuals as the surveyor who found the source of the Hudson and the engineer who tried to build a hydroelectric plant at Storm King Mountain. Inviting us to view the river from a wider perspective than ever before.
The Life of John André by
Publication Date: 2019-01-25
John André was head of the British Army's Secret Service in North America as the Revolutionary War entered its most bitter and, ultimately, decisive phase. In 1780, he masterminded the defection of a high-ranking American officer--General Benedict Arnold. Arnold, who had recently been appointed commander of West Point and agreed, through André, to turn over to the British this strategically vital fort on the upper reaches of the Hudson River. Control of the fort would interrupt lines of communication between New England and the southern colonies, seriously impeding military operations against the British. The plan was also to simultaneously kidnap General George Washington, Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army. By these two masterstrokes, the British believed they could end rebel resistance. The secret negotiations between Arnold and André were protracted and fraught with danger. Arnold's new wife, Peggy became the go-between in the negotiations. Arnold insisted that, to complete negotiations, he and André must meet face to face. At the dead of night on September 21st 1780 the two rendezvoused in no-man's-land. Sir Henry Clinton, commander of British forces in North America and André's immediate superior, agreed to this meeting but with three strict conditions: that André not go within the American lines; that he remain in uniform; and that he carry away from the meeting no incriminating papers. Thus, if caught, André could not be treated as a spy. Yet, when André was captured forty-eight hours later, he was within American lines, had changed into civilian clothes and was carrying maps of West Point hidden in his boots. The Americans had no option other than to treat him as a spy, especially when he himself admitted this. He was convicted by military tribunal and hanged--his death lamented both in America and England. While biographers agree on the facts of this tragic episode, they disagree on André's motives and why he chose to sacrifice himself. This new biography of André attempts to answer why Andre acted as he did.
Native New Yorkers by
Publication Date: 2002-05-01
To be stewards of the earth, not owners: this was the way of the Lenape. Considering themselves sacred land keepers, they walked gently; they preserved the world they inhabited. Drawing on a wide range of historical sources, interviews with living Algonquin elders, and first-hand explorations of the ancient trails, burial grounds, and sacred sites, Native New Yorkers offers a rare glimpse into the civilization that served as the blueprint for modern New York. A fascinating history, supplemented with maps, timelines, and a glossary of Algonquin words, this book is an important and timely celebration of a forgotten people.
Publication Date: 2012-01-16
Settled by Dutch farmers and entrepreneurs in the 17th and 18th centuries, Orangetown's story is tied closely to America's history. It was here that British and Continental armies marched through; where the infamous Major John Andre, co-conspirator of Benedict Arnold, was tried and hanged for treason; and where three times Washington established his headquarters and finalized terms for the end of the American Revolution. In the 19th century, Orangetown was both a quiet and productive area of farms and mills and at the forefront of the Industrial Revolution. Its shipyards, steamships, railroads, and factories manufactured and transported passengers, produce, and freight to and from nearby New York City and beyond. In the early 20th century, Orangetown's rural charm attracted affluent city dwellers with spas, elegant resorts, and pristine real estate. In the 1940s, over one million soldiers trained at Camp Shanks for combat deployment in Europe. In the 1950s, life was changed irrevocably with the opening of the Tappan Zee Bridge and the New York State Thruway.
Politics Across the Hudson by
Publication Date: 2015-08-03
The State of New York is now building one of the world's longest, widest, and most expensive bridges--the new Tappan Zee Bridge--stretching more than three miles across the Hudson River, approximately thirteen miles north of New York City. In Politics Across the Hudson, urban planner Philip Plotch offers a behind-the-scenes look at three decades of contentious planning and politics centered around this bridge, recently renamed for Governor Mario M. Cuomo, the state's governor from 1983 to 1994. He reveals valuable lessons for those trying to tackle complex public policies while also confirming our worst fears about government dysfunction. Drawing on his extensive experience planning megaprojects, interviews with more than a hundred key figures--including governors, agency heads, engineers, civic advocates, and business leaders--and extraordinary access to internal government records, Plotch tells a compelling story of high-stakes battles between powerful players in the public, private, and civic sectors. He reveals how state officials abandoned viable options, squandered hundreds of millions of dollars, forfeited more than three billion dollars in federal funds, and missed out on important opportunities. Faced with the public's unrealistic expectations, no one could identify a practical solution to a vexing problem, a dilemma that led three governors to study various alternatives rather than disappoint key constituencies. Politics Across the Hudson continues where Robert Caro's The Power Broker left off and illuminates the power struggles involved in building New York's first major new bridge since the Robert Moses era. Plotch describes how one governor, Andrew Cuomo, shrewdly overcame the seemingly insurmountable obstacles of onerous environmental regulations, vehement community opposition, insufficient funding, interagency battles, and overly optimistic expectations.
Revolution on the Hudson by
Publication Date: 2016-06-14
No part of the country was more contested during the American Revolution than New York City, the Hudson River, and the surrounding counties. Political and military leaders on both sides viewed the Hudson River Valley as the American jugular, which, if cut, would quickly bleed the rebellion to death. So in 1776, King George III sent the largest amphibious force ever assembled to seize Manhattan and use it as a base from which to push up the Hudson River Valley for a grand rendezvous at Albany with an impressive army driving down from Canada. George Washington and every other patriot leader shared the king's fixation with the Hudson. Generations of American and British historians have held the same view. In fact, one of the few things that scholars have agreed upon is that the British strategy, though disastrously executed, should have been swift and effective. Until now, no one has argued that this plan of action was lunacy from the beginning. Revolution on the Hudson makes the bold new argument that Britain's attempt to cut off New England never would have worked, and that doggedly pursuing dominance of the Hudson ultimately cost the crown her colonies. It unpacks intricate military maneuvers on land and sea, introduces the personalities presiding over each side's strategy, and reinterprets the vagaries of colonial politics to offer a thrilling response to one of our most vexing historical questions: How could a fledgling nation have defeated the most powerful war machine of the era?
South Mountain Road by
Publication Date: 2000-03-08
"My mother killed herself on the first day of spring." So begins "South Mountain Road," Hesper Anderson's elegant, wrenching memoir of death and deception, family secrets and memories, and of a young girl's trauma of self-discovery. When Hesper Anderson, the daughter of famed Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Maxwell Anderson "(High Tor, What Price Glory?, Winterset, Key Largo, The Bad Seed)," got the phone call informing her that her mother, the beautiful, enigmatic Mab, had committed suicide, she knew that her world would be forever changed. A woman of baffling remoteness and alienating beauty, Mab Anderson had been the dominant figure in her daughter's life. What Hesper did not realize, however, was that beyond the inevitable devastation of loss lay a whole chain of discoveries that would link her irrevocably both to her mother's past and to secrets that would turn her world upside down. Hesper was a shy young girl, insecure and -- to her mind -- inadequate. As a result, she spent much of her childhood adrift, rendered all but invisible by the alienating shadow of her mother.
The Tappan Zee Bridge by
Publication Date: 2002-06-01
The objective of this book is to suggest solutions to our 21st Century regional transportation problems. The author's proposals address a variety of regional transportation concepts, in case study format, regarding the current dilemma of how to implement improvements to the Tappan Zee Bridge. The Tappan Zee Bridge is a major transportation link to the New York City Metropolitan Regional Area as well as to the New England Regional Area. This dilemma epitomizes transportation issues faced by other large regional metropolitan areas throughout the world. To successfully resolve the questions posed requires a systematic and coordinated approach for managing 21st Century traffic. The need for a comprehensive transportation plan was brought into focus by the destruction of the World Trade Center in New York City on September 11, 2001, which demonstrated the need for alternative transportation systems within the New York City Metropolitan Regional Area.
The Tappan Zee Bridge and the Forging of the Rockland Suburb by
Publication Date: 2010-02-16
Published by the Historical Society of Rockland County, this title covers early Rockland history as a farming area and vacation destination, Camp Shanks and World War II, and the creation of our suburban environment.
The Tragedy of Benedict Arnold by
Publication Date: 2018-05-01
A vivid and timely re-examination of one of young America's most complicated figures: the war hero turned infamous traitor, Benedict Arnold. Proud and talented, history now remembers this conflicted man solely through the lens of his last desperate act of treason. Yet the fall of Benedict Arnold remains one of the Revolutionary period's great puzzles. Why did a brilliant military commander, who repeatedly risked his life fighting the British, who was grievously injured in the line of duty, and fell into debt personally funding his own troops, ultimately became a traitor to the patriot cause? Malcolm skillfully unravels the man behind the myth and gives us a portrait of the true Arnold and his world. There was his dramatic victory against the British at Saratoga in 1777 and his troubled childhood in a pre-revolutionary America beset with class tension and economic instability. We witness his brilliant wartime military exploits and his contentious relationship with a newly formed and fractious Congress, who were fearful of powerful military leaders.
The Traitor's Wife by
Publication Date: 2014-02-11
A riveting historical novel about Peggy Shippen Arnold, the cunning wife of Benedict Arnold and mastermind behind America's most infamous act of treason... Everyone knows Benedict Arnold--the Revolutionary War general who betrayed America and fled to the British--as history's most notorious turncoat. Many know Arnold's co-conspirator, Major John André, who was apprehended with Arnold's documents in his boots and hanged at the orders of General George Washington. But few know of the integral third character in the plot: a charming young woman who not only contributed to the betrayal but orchestrated it. Socialite Peggy Shippen is half Benedict Arnold's age when she seduces the war hero during his stint as military commander of Philadelphia. Blinded by his young bride's beauty and wit, Arnold does not realize that she harbors a secret: loyalty to the British. Nor does he know that she hides a past romance with the handsome British spy John André. Peggy watches as her husband, crippled from battle wounds and in debt from years of service to the colonies, grows ever more disillusioned with his hero, Washington, and the American cause. Together with her former love and her disaffected husband, Peggy hatches the plot to deliver West Point to the British and, in exchange, win fame and fortune for herself and Arnold. Told from the perspective of Peggy's maid, whose faith in the new nation inspires her to intervene in her mistress's affairs even when it could cost her everything, The Traitor's Wife brings these infamous figures to life, illuminating the sordid details and the love triangle that nearly destroyed the American fight for freedom.
Treacherous Beauty by
Publication Date: 2012-07-03
Histories of the Revolutionary War honor several heroines. There’s Betsy Ross, Abigail Adams, and Molly Pitcher. But there had been no popular biography that focuses on one of the most remarkable women of the war, a beautiful society girl named Peggy Shippen, who befriended a handsome British spy and then married a crippled American revolutionary general twice her age. At a crucial juncture in the Revolutionary War, Peggy brought the two enemy warriors together in a treasonous plot that came perilously close to turning George Washington into a prisoner of war and possibly changing the outcome of the conflict. Peggy Shippen was Mrs. Benedict Arnold. Peggy was to the American Revolution what the fictional Scarlett O’Hara was to the Civil War: a woman whose survival skills trumped all other values. Had she been a man, she might have been arrested, tried, and executed. And she might have become famous. But because of eighteenth-century views of women and her own guileful deflection of blame, Peggy's role was minimized and she was allowed to recede into the background – with a generous British pension in hand. It took a century and a half for historians to begin to appreciate her true treacherous role during our nation’s birth.
Unlikely General by
Publication Date: 2018-04-24
Why did the once-ardent hero of the American Revolution become its most scandalous general? In the spring of 1792, President George Washington chose "Mad" Anthony Wayne to defend America from a potentially devastating threat. Native forces had decimated the standing army and Washington needed a champion to open the country stretching from the Ohio River westward to the headwaters of the Mississippi for settlement. A spendthrift, womanizer, and heavy drinker who had just been ejected from Congress for voter fraud, Wayne was an unlikely savior. Yet this disreputable man raised a new army and, in 1794, scored a decisive victory at the Battle of Fallen Timbers, successfully preserving his country and President Washington's legacy. Drawing from Wayne's insightful and eloquently written letters, historian Mary Stockwell sheds light on this fascinating and underappreciated figure. Her compelling work pays long‑overdue tribute to a man--ravaged physically and emotionally by his years of military service--who fought to defend the nascent American experiment at a critical moment in history.
Valiant Ambition by
Publication Date: 2016-05-10
An account of the middle years of the American Revolution and the tragic relationship between George Washington and Benedict Arnold. In September 1776, the vulnerable Continental army under an unsure George Washington evacuated New York after a devastating defeat by the British army. Three weeks later, one of his favorite generals, Benedict Arnold, miraculously succeeded in postponing the British naval advance down Lake Champlain that might have lost the war. This book ends four years later - Washington has defeated the British and Arnold has fled to the enemy. America was forced at last to realize that the real threat to its liberties might not come from without but from within. Valiant Ambition is a portrait of a people in crisis and the war that gave birth to a nation.