On April 22, 2017 from 11 am to 4 pm, Crailo State Historic Site will host a Pinkster celebration featuring the performance and education group, The Children of Dahomey.
Once a Dutch holiday commemorating Pentecost, Pinkster became a distinctly African American holiday in the Hudson River Valley during the colonial era. During the 17th and 18th centuries, enslaved and free African Americans transformed Pinkster from a Dutch religious observance into a spring festival and a celebration of African cultural traditions. All along the Hudson River and on Albany’s “Pinkster Hill” (the current site of the NYS Capitol), enslaved African Americans reunited with family and friends and celebrated Pinkster with storytelling, food, music, and dance. Other Pinkster traditions, like the selection of the Pinkster King, created opportunities for enslaved African Americans to honor respected members of the community and to subtly mock their white enslavers. Continue reading
In the latest episode of the New Netherland Praatjes podcast Crailo State Historic Site Director Heidi Hill chats with Russell Shorto about the history surrounding the settlement of the 17th-century Dutch patroonship of Rensselaerswijck, the history of the building itself, and the evolution of the site as a museum. Continue reading
The public is invited to the opening day of Crailofest, a celebration of African culture in the New World, on April 2, 2016.
From 12:30 until 2 pm, Crailo will be open for self-guided exploration of a new exhibit A Dishonorable Trade: Human Trafficking in the Dutch Atlantic World and the permanent exhibit A Sweet and Alien Land.
Two more Crailofest days will take place on May 7 and June 4 with dramatic performances, poetry readings, stringed instrument performances, jazz, dance, art and food.
On Saturday, September 12th, Crailo State Historic Site and the Friends of Fort Crailo present a Harvest Faire.
Crailo’s historic grounds and Hudson River park set the scene for the event which features both 17th and 18th century re-enactors, music, and demonstrations, as well as crafts and games for children. Among the re-enactors are 17th-century Dutch settlers, a tinsmith, a doctor and Native Americans. Continue reading
On February 22, 2015 at 1 pm Crailo State Historic Site in Rensselaer, NY will present “Peter Stuyvesant’s Guide to Style: What to Wear in the Seventeenth Century,” a lecture on the clothing of the Dutch colony of New Netherland by Anne Matusiewicz.
She will discuss the dress of the colonists as well as resources for researching and recreating their clothing. Continue reading
Twelfth Night was one of the traditional holidays celebrated by the Dutch and English colonists of early New York. Twelfth Night was the final holiday of the season and was marked with unsurpassed feasting and revelry.
On Saturday January 10, 2015 Crailo State Historic Site in Rensselaer, NY, will welcome visitors for its annual Twelfth Night Celebration from 4 until 7 pm. Continue reading
Crailo State Historic Site in the City of Rensselaer will host a St. Nicholas Day Open House on December 6, 2013 from 12:00 pm until 4:00 pm. For the Dutch settlers of this region The Feast of St. Nicholas was a day of celebration with favorite food and treats.
Children checked their shoes, left out the previous night, for presents from Sinterklaas. In Washington Irving’s History of New York (1809), Sinterklaas was Americanized into “Santa Claus” (a name first used in the New York press in 1773) and helped popularize today’s Christmas traditions. Continue reading
Mixing food and history in a celebration of Dutch and American Christmas traditions, award-winning food historian Peter G. Rose’s new book, Delicious December: How the Dutch Brought Us Santa, Presents, and Treats: A Holiday Cookbook (Excelsior Editions/State University of New York Press, 2014), provides more than one hundred tried-and-true recipes. For planning purposes, complete menus and recipes for the parties that might happen between the feast days are also provided.
Rose draws on traditions that date back to the Middle Ages as well as her own reminiscences of her native country, and she suggests many ways to incorporate these true Dutch treats into American celebrations. The public is invited to join the Friends of Fort Crailo and Crailo State Historic Site at the Rensselaer Public Library for their Annual Meeting and lecture on Sunday November 16 at 4:30 pm. After a brief business meeting, Peter Rose will present “Joyful Traditions: How the Dutch Brought Us Santa, Presents and Treats.” Continue reading
On Saturday, September 13th, Crailo State Historic Site and the Friends of Fort Crailo present Harvest Faire, an outdoor event free to the public (a nominal donation is asked to enter the museum exhibit), and part of the Hudson River Ramble. In case of inclement weather, the event will be held on Sunday, September 14th. The festivities run from 11 am to 4 pm.
Crailo’s grounds set the scene for 17th- and 18th-century re-enactors, music, and demonstrations. Among the re-enactors are 17th-century Dutch settlers, a rope-maker and tinsmith, and Native Americans with a recreated wigwam. This year will also include demonstrations of wheat threshing. Continue reading
Crailo State Historic Site has announced its annual Summer Sampler History Camp for kids. This year’s Summer Sampler takes place August 4-8 from 10 am to 12 pm each day.
Participants can pick and choose the days to attend, from just one day up to all five. Each day will include activities, crafts to take home, and a snack. Historic reproductions, interactive games and exploration of the river’s edge will bring a different theme related to Crailo and the area’s rich history to life each day: Continue reading