Insider's Guide: Military Sites

Military Sites to check out in the Valley




MILITARY SITES

 

DUTCHESS

MOUNT GULIAN HISTORIC SITE Beacon. 845-831-8172; www.mountgulian.org

Circa 1730 Dutch Colonial overlooking the Hudson was HQ of Gen. von Steuben during final days of Revolution. Native American artifacts, items associated with the Verplanck family and the Society. May–Oct., Wed.-Fri. & Sun. 1-5 p.m., Dec.-Apr. by appt. Special events.

 

VAN WYCK HOMESTEAD MUSEUM Fishkill. 845-896-9560

Restored Dutch Colonial housed officers of Washington’s army; reputedly the setting for J. F. Cooper’s The Spy. Portraits by Ammi Phillips, Revolutionary war artifacts from Fishkill Depot and Barracks, major supply station during Revolution. Self-guided walking tour of grounds highlights points of interest of Revolution. June–Oct.: weekends 1-4 p.m. and by appt. Fishkill’s Dutch Reformed Church  (845-896-9836), which housed prisoners of war, and Trinity Episcopal Church (845-896-6093), which served as a military hospital, can be seen by appt.

 

ORANGE

CONSTITUTION ISLAND Take the ferry from the south dock at West Point. 845-446-8676; www.constitutionisland.org

Two-hour tour includes boat ride, walking tour of Revolutionary fortifications, guided tour of Warner house (home of 19th-century authors Susan and Anna Warner). May-June, school tours only. July-Sept., open Wed.-Thurs. 1 & 2 p.m. $10, $9 seniors and ages 6-16, $3 age 5 & under. Overland access to island via minibus departing from Cold Spring (Putnam) RR station, July-Sept., last Sat. of each month, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Special events planned for each Sat. Call for reservations.

 

EDMONSTON HOUSE New Windsor. 845-561-5073

HQ of National Temple Hill Association, formed to preserve site of New Windsor Cantonment. Restored 1755 stone house, blacksmith shop, slave quarters. April-Sept. Call for more information.

 

FORT?DECKER Port Jervis. 845-856-2375; www.minisink.org

18th-century house burned in 1779 by Joseph Brant’s Mohawk raiders; rebuilt in 1793. Exhibits on building’s history. 18th-century cooking demonstration last Saturday of each month May-Nov. 14. Starting point for Delaware River Heritage Trail, which connects historic sites in Port Jervis.

 

FORT MONTGOMERY STATE HISTORIC SITE Fort Montgomery. 845-446-2134

Preserved remains of 14.5-acre fortification attacked by British in October 1777 during American Revolution. Grounds contain earthworks and foundations of barracks and the powder magazine. Suspension bridge crosses Popolopen Creek; spectacular river views.

 

KNOX’S HEADQUARTERS STATE HISTORIC SITE Vails Gate. 845-561-5498

During Revolution this 1754 structure housed Generals Knox, Gates, and Greene. Tours, Memorial Day–Labor Day, Wed.-Sat. 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Sun. 1-5 p.m. Year-round by appt. Grounds, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. $3 adults, $2 seniors, children under 12 free.

 

NEW WINDSOR CANTONMENT STATE HISTORIC SITE Vails Gate. 845-561-1765

Last camp of Washington’s army. Exhibits, weapons demonstrations, re-creation of camp life. Special events. Mid-Apr.–Oct., Wed.-Sun. Admission fees are donation based. Across road is the Last Encampment of the Continental Army (845-561-5073). 167-acre site offers replicas of log huts, picnic areas, self-guided nature walks. Guided tours, Mid-Apr.–Sept., Sat. & Sun.

 

U.S. MILITARY ACADEMY West Point. 845-938-2638 (visitors center), 845-446-4724 (guided tours).

Museum includes pistols that belonged to George Washington, uniforms, flags, tanks; Visitors Information Center; and the Cadet Chapel. Call for tour times. Adults over 16 must have photo ID. $10, $7 children 2-11.

 

WASHINGTON’S HEADQUARTERS STATE HISTORIC SITE Newburgh. 845-562-1195

George Washington and his wife lived in this stone farmhouse from 1782-1783. Furnished period rooms. Guided tours. Adjacent museum features artifacts from the Revolution in the Hudson Valley. Mid-Apr.–Oct., Wed.-Sun. Group reservations year-round. $4 adults, $3 NYS seniors, $1 children 5-11. Special events.

 

ROCKLAND

CAMP SHANKS Orangeburg. 845-638-5244

Built in 1942; originally encompassed 1,300 acres and 2,500 buildings. From here, 1.3 million soldiers departed for overseas service in WWII. Quonset hut houses memorabilia, a camp model, vintage training films. Memorial Day-Labor Day, Sat.-Sun. 12-4 p.m., weekdays by appt.

 

STONY POINT BATTLEFIELD STATE HISTORIC SITE Stony Point. 845-786-2521

American Brig. Gen. Anthony Wayne led a victorious midnight assault against British fortifications on July 15, 1779. Musketry, artillery, camp-life demonstrations. Also, the Hudson’s oldest lighthouse. Museum:?Mid-Apr.–Oct. 31, Wed.-Sun. Groups by reservation. $5 parking fee on weekends.

 

WASHINGTON’S HEADQUARTERS AT TAPPAN (DE WINT HOUSE) Tappan. 845-359-1359

Circa 1700 house served as Washington’s HQ four times during a visit at the time of the espionage trial of British Maj. John Andre. Museum contains paintings, Washington memorabilia. Open daily.

 

ULSTER

SENATE HOUSE STATE HISTORIC SITE Kingston. 845-338-2786

Built in 1676, destroyed by British in 1777, rebuilt in 1778. Colonial-era Convention of Senators of the State of New York met here. Museum features local artifacts, art by Kingston native John Vanderlyn. Next door, 19th-century Loughran House has occasional exhibits. Apr. 15-Oct. 31, daily except Tuesday. Groups by appt. $4, $3 seniors, children under 12 free.

 

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