By the time Washington Irving moved to Sunnyside, he was renowned on two continents as “the first American man of letters.” He had already written both of his most famous stories, “Legend” and “Rip Van Winkle”; covered Aaron Burr’s treason trial for a newspaper; co-founded the literary magazine Salmagundi; coined the phrase “the almighty dollar,” as well as the nicknames “Gotham” for New York City and “Knickerbocker” for one of its residents; spawned the fiction that Christopher Columbus’ contemporaries believed the Earth to be flat; and, with his accounts of traditional Yorkshire Yuletide celebrations in his Bracebridge Hall stories, planted the seed of inspiration in Charles Dickens that would soon lead to the writing of A Christmas Carol.
“Laurels by Laura” is an account of life in Shandaken that will leave readers nostalgic for days gone by, even if they weren’t there to see them.
Saturday, October 13: It’s the longest-standing Burr arch covered bridge in New York and the second-oldest covered bridge in the state
Historic Huguenot Street became an immersive experience in history as dozens of reenactors and costumed interpreters offered demonstrations and performances throughout the day.
Saturday, September 8: Interpreters in period garb, reenactments, performances, Colonial games and demonstrations will bring history to life throughout the day.
A renowned beauty and intellect of legendary sensuality and style, she was praised, envied, scandalized, even worshipped (for one, by Byrdcliffe’s founder Ralph Whitehead, who named the domicile he built for her “The Angel.”) But though she was the first great woman artist of Woodstock, her face remains all but unknown to us.
For those who were around during the fight, the mural makes perfect sense. But for younger people, some explanation is needed.
“I knew 50 years ago what I am doing today,” John Novi wrote at the time of the property transfer. “I have always believed that the Depuy House belongs to the community as a public museum securing the history of canal travel and telling the story of the locktenders that lived in the house.”
The idea that a feminine impulse could save testosterone-driven capitalism from itself is not new. In fact the notion was subtly rooted in Woodstock’s first back-to-nature, Arts and Crafts community, Byrdcliffe. Here a bisexual and lesbian sub-culture prevailed unacknowledged, even by itself. Historians of an earlier era remained at best vague in describing it, and at worst silent. That silence ends now.
The museum recently received a grant to fund a World War 1 display. It also received some criticism for displaying a Nazi flag.