Hidden History of Columbia County, NY


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Columbia County NY HistoryBordered by the Hudson River and the Berkshire Mountains of Massachusetts, few know Columbia County is noted for a mastodon tooth that rolled down a farmer’s hill in Claverack changing the world’s understanding of prehistoric times. President Martin Van Buren lost his wife, Hannah, in Kinderhook and hardly mentioned her again. Hudson’s gallows were the scene of New York’s last hanging, as hundreds of ticket holders looked on. “Pondshiners” in the hills of Taghkanic made fantastic baskets.

Local author Allison Guertin Marchese explores these little-known stories of people and places in
Hidden History of Columbia County, New York (History Press, 2014).

Allison Guertin Marchese works as a fundraiser and grant writer for various non-profits in her area. She is also a freelance writer and has published articles in local newspapers such as the Chatham Press, the Chatham Times and the Women’s Courier on historical subjects ranging from local Shaker communities to ghosts. She has worked as a researcher and publicist for the Shaker Museum.

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2 thoughts on “Hidden History of Columbia County, NY

  1. Debra Winchell

    I object to the Pondshiners being labelled as outcasts. I thought in this day and age that journalists were above such judgmental labelling. The Pondshiners were actually distant relatives of mine, descendants of the Mohican people who used to live in the area. They never successfully made the transition to the dominant American culture.

    Reply
    1. John WarrenJohn Warren

      Hi Debra,

      Thanks for your comment. I agree and should have caught that. I’ve removed the offending phrase.

      Thank you for pointing it out.

      John Warren
      Editor

      Reply

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