Browse Exhibits (24 total)

The Life and Death of Leah Catharine Deyo Jessup

Leah Catharine Deyo was born in New Paltz, NY in 1818 and resided in the Hudson Valley until her death in 1849. 

John and Katia Jacobs, descendants of Leah Catharine preserved a collection of her correspondence, daguerreotypes, clothing and photographs. They generously donated it to the Haviland-Heidgerd Historical Collection at the Elting Library in the 1980s.

This exhibit chronicles different aspects of Leah Catharine's life and offers a glimpse into the daily life of a mid-nineteenth century woman.

All of the digitized materials in the Leah Catharine Deyo Jessup Collection are available on the Hudson River Valley Heritage website. Selected items from the collection are featured throughout this exhibit.


From My Pen and Power

For nearly four decades, Julia Lawrence Hasbrouck diligently kept a diary, using it to chronicle her role and responsibilities as a 19th century wife, mother and daughter. Julia’s meticulous entries, written between 1838 to 1873, reflect her opinions and views of these experiences. Her seventeen diaries, as well as daguerreotypes, portraits, school composition books, piano forte sheet music and two diaries kept by Julia's daughter, comprise The Julia Lawrence Hasbrouck Collection. The chronological scope of Julia's writing paired with her descriptive and personal style, provide a detailed account of private and public life of the early Victorian era as experienced by a white, middle class, northern woman.


Marlboro Free Library 100 Years Celebration(1911-2011)

The Marlboro Free Library has been serving it's community for a 100 years (1911-2011). This exhibit portrays the different locations of the library in the town of Marlboro, NY over the years from December 9, 1911 to the present, as well as providing a history timeline.


The School Letters of Rachel Eltinge, 1863-1865

Rachel Eltinge, born in 1847 in New Paltz, NY, began attending the Poughkeepsie Female Academy in 1863.

During her stay at the Academy she wrote numerous letters to her friends and family, describing everything from mundane daily tasks to important local events. The information exchanged between Rachel and the people most dear to her reveal the simple yet fascinating aspects of living in a time so different from our own.

This exhibit not only features Rachel Eltinge’s correspondences but also family photographs and genealogy, giving both clarity and life to words on paper.The letters and images found in this exhibit were generously donated to Historic Huguenot Street by Helena LeFevre.

All of the digitized materials in the Rachel Eltinge Collection are available on the Hudson River Valley Heritage website. Selected items from the collection are featured throughout this exhibit.


This exhbit was created by Susan Stessin-Cohn, Ashley Hurlburt, Kate Long, Jeff Warren and Carole Ford.

Women of the Hudson Valley

This exhibit highlights resources availalbe in several digital collections in Hudson River Valley Heritage.

The following organizations contributed to this exhibit: Haviland-Heidgerd Historical Collection at Elting Memorial Library, Historic Huguenot Street, Historical Society of the Town of Warwick, Nyack Library, Vassar College, Locust Grove/Locust Lawn Farm, Woodstock Artists Association and Museum and Women's Studio Workshop.

Franklin D. Roosevelt's Family History in New York's Hudson Valley

Franklin D. Roosevelt was proud of his heritage and family name. He idealized and strived to assume the gallant qualities he saw in his ancestry - generations of which he learned about from family stories passed down, and from the papers they left behind. Like his legendary stamp collection, FDR collected, sorted, and cared for the records of the Delano and Roosevelt families.

Told here are the stories of several generations of Roosevelts and Delanos who worked hard to prosper and establish the prominence now associated with their names. Their voices and deeds are captured within the following selection of correspondence, accounts, estate papers and public announcements. These documents, once held by President Roosevelt, now in the collection of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum, simultaneously tell the history of settling on the banks of the Hudson River and the rise of two of the Hudson River Valley’s great families.

The items featured in this exhibit are a selection of digitized historical materials contributed to by the FDR Library. 

Quilts of Historic Huguenot Street

Every experience deeply felt in life needs to be passed along - whether it be through words and music, chiseled in stone, painted with a brush, or sewn with a needle, it is a way of reaching for immortality.

                                       ~Thomas Jefferson


History of New Paltz in Objects

“You take an object…and you put it down in front of you and you start. You begin to tell a story.”

Edmund de Waal, The Hare with Amber Eyes 

This exhibition brings together a collection of artifacts, tools, knick-knacks, books, clothing, and other items that collectively tell the stories of New Paltz, New York. Today the site of a vibrant college, a favorite location for artists, outdoor enthusiasts, and quiet weekend retreats, New Paltz has a history that reaches back through the earliest records of American history and culture. It was once a crossroads in trade roads and hunting grounds for the region’s Native American cultures. Settled by Europeans in the seventeenth century, "Die Pfaltz" quickly developed into a thriving early American community. This place has thus witnessed a span of major historical events that have defined the American experience, from the Revolutionary War and slavery to the Vietnam protests of the twentieth century.

By its nature, the narrative we tell here is neither complete nor exhaustive. Based on the materials of history, what these stories share is a sense of dimension, extension, and richness: a button made in seventeenth-century Amsterdam that may have been a trading item between settlers and Indians; an autograph book that records the social circle of a nineteenth-century college woman; a collection of worn t-shirts that document the establishment of college radio in New York.

This collaborative material history grew from Cyrus Mulready’s Spring 2013 Honors Seminar at SUNY New Paltz. You can read more in the following links about the class and project. It has also been conducted in collaboration with several local institutions and individuals: Dr. Joseph Diamond of the SUNY New Paltz department of Anthropology, the Haviland-Heidgerd Collection at Elting Memorial Library in New Paltz, Historic Huguenot Street, The Sojourner Truth Library at SUNY New Paltz, and the Southeastern New York Library Resources Council

Yama Farms Calling

"For a Brief time, during the early years of the twentieth century, at the edge of the hamlet of Napanoch, in the Town of Wawarsing, in Ulster County, there existed a unique and improbable place -- Yama Farms Inn, known also as Yama-no-uchi, a Japanese phrase meaning 'Home in the Mountains.'  Founded in 1913 by Frank Seaman and his companion Olive Sarre, the Inn evolved from an experiment in Japanese architecture and landscaping into a famous resort.  Its guests were the artistic, political, intellectual, scientific, and business leaders of the era." 

From the prologue by Wendy E. Harris. Yama Farms, a Most Unusual Catskills Resort, by Harris, Harris and Wiebe, 2006, published by Cragsmoor Historical Society, Cragsmoor, NY.

This exhibit tells a story in pictures about one of the "Presidents Conferences" -- meetings of captains of industry -- which were held annually at Yama Farms.   

On an autumn day in 2008, Ellenville Public Library & Museum (EPL&M) received a phone call from an antiques dealer in Owl’s Head, Maine.   A client of his was offering for sale a unique photo album in which appeared the place names of Wawarsing, Napanoch and Yama Farms.  Our enthusiastic dealer called us to offer us right of first refusal for our local history collection.  Thanks to a private donation in memory of Marcia Resnick, EPL&M was able to purchase the album. What follows are excerpts, as well as information from research we performed on this particular conference.

If you are interested in viewing the photo album in its entirety, please visit our collection on the Hudson River Valley Heritage Site.

Holiday Menus

Many of our favorite holiday celebrations are centered around food.  Even if our traditional meals vary, food and holidays go hand in hand.  As part of these celebrations, restaurants and hotels often produced special menus for holiday meals.  Compared to the daily menu, these holiday menus were elaborately designed and listed some of the finest foods that were being served at that time and place.

This online exhibit presents a selection of historical holiday menus from The Culinary Institute of America Menu Collection. Each menu reflects the way people celebrated holidays in the past. First, notice the designs of these menus, which often reflect the celebratory nature of the holiday. Then, look at the items on the menus and you will see a lot of traditional foods that are still associated with the holiday today.  Some menus offer a special fixed price meal, while others offer an a la carte menu.  Some list the evening's entertainment and some include drink lists.  Most importantly, these menus encourage diners to eat, drink, and be merry.

We hope you enjoy this selection of holiday menus. As the year progresses, we will be adding more holidays and more menus, so be sure to check back often.

About the collection

The Culinary Institute of America's special collection of 30,000 menus includes menus from CIA restaurants, along with gifts from major menu collectors, including George Lang, Chapman S. Root, Vinnie Oakes, Roy Andries de Groot, and the Smiley family of Mohonk Mountain House. Assembled over decades, the collection illustrates the history of dining in America and abroad, with menus from all of the states and over 100 countries, as well as ships, railroads, and airlines.

The CIA menus are part of the CIA Archives and Special Collections, housed in the Conrad N. Hilton Library. Anyone interested in learning more about the collection or locating specific menus should contact Nicole Semenchuk at