Up the River

Friday, May 14, 2010 Road Junkies 0 Comments

Day 14: Tarrytown, NY to Lenox, MA.  In the late 19th century, the beauty of the Hudson River Valley lured such wealthy industrialists as Gould, Rockefeller, and Vanderbilt to build summer homes in the area. Many are now open to the public. Another popular attraction is Sunnyside, the home of Tarrytown's favorite son Washington Irving. Our plan to visit some of these great estates of the rich and famous in Tarrytown and Sleepy Hollow was disrupted by the weather this morning.

As we set out for Sunnyside, rain arrived in a sudden downpour. While we were safe and dry in our car, we saw a young woman at a bus stop who was getting drenched, so we gave her one of our umbrellas. What a feel-good moment to be able to help someone with exactly the thing they most need at the very moment they need it! 
As we drove north along the Hudson River, the weather cleared. We found a few letterboxes on both sides of the river, including one in Peekskill honoring the town's favorite son, George Pataki, New York's 53rd governor.  His political career began with the presidency of his senior class in high school before he moved on to win 70% of the vote in the city's mayoral election at age 36.  (Pictured above:  Bear Mountain Bridge near Peekskill)
Having lived in the Atlanta for so long, we have become accustomed to buildings being torn down when they become a bit dated and replaced with something shiny and new. It has been such a pleasure to see some of the historical sites in this area. Even the public libraries are housed in the impressive buildings. Many have benefitted from generous philanthropic bequests, such as the Tarrytown Public Library.
Tarrytown Public Library
Salisbury, Connecticut's public library is also a majestic structure which has benefitted from the generosity of local residents.  The library collection began in 1771 when a local merchant used community contributions to purchase 200 books in London.  It became the first public library in the colonies to lend books free of charge.  By 1810, the town took over the funding for the library, and in the 1890s, Jonathan Scoville, a local philanthropist left $12,000 in his will for the erection of a new building.  With additional funds from the family, the current building was constructed.
Scoville Memorial Library in Salisbury, CT
We ended the day in Lenox, Massachusetts, in the heart of the Berkshire Mountains. We plan to spend a couple of days here before continuing northward.

  • Miles: 153
  • Letterboxes: 3
  • High Temp: 72°
FRIDAY, 14 MAY 2010