Tonight the museum will welcome Wes and Barbara Gottlock to discuss their book Lost Amusement Parks of the Hudson Valley as part of the Follow the River Lecture Series. So we thought we'd revisit some of the stories of amusement parks and steamboat landings on the Hudson River we've already published here on the History Blog. Follow the links in the introductions below to read more about each park.
Kingston Point Park
Kingston's own local amusement park, Kingston Point Park was built by Samuel Coykendall, owner of the Cornell Steamboat Company and Ulster & Delaware Railroad. It featured a merry-go-round with a barrel piano (which is now in the museum) along with walking paths, a Ferris wheel, boat rentals, and other attractions. The main point was to serve as a landing for the Hudson River Day Line, and trains and trolleys would whisk passengers to Kingston and the Catskills. Kingston Point Park also featured prominently in 4th of July celebrations in the past.
Indian Point Park
Formerly a farm, Indian Point Park was purchased specifically as a destination park for the Hudson River Day Line to rival that of Bear Mountain. It was later converted into a nuclear power plant.
Palisades Interstate Park
The creation of the Palisades Interstate Park was due in large part to the work of women. The Palisades had long been a major landmark for any Hudson River mariner. Elevators were used in the late 19th century to get visitors from their steamboats at water level up to the park on top of the cliffs.
Amusement parks and picnic groves on the Hudson River could also be an escape. So in honor of Black History Month, we're re-sharing this wonderful article on how Black New Yorkers used steamboat charters to area parks to escape the prejudice and racism of the 1870s.
Lost Amusement Parks of the Hudson Valley
There's still time to join us for tonight's lecture! Register now.
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