The Historical Society of Newburgh is set to host former forest ranger Donald “Doc” Bayne, who will talk about ancient secrets and stories of the forest of the Hudson Valley, and The Great Chain over the Hudson River, on Saturday, October 12th, at 2 pm.
Mr. Bayne spent decades as a Palisades Parks guide and interpreter and came to know and love the features of the landscape, especially the remnants of long-ago settlements and industries. He studied the history of colonial times and knew that somewhere in the Sterling Forest of Orange County was the forge that made links for The Great Chain – a massive obstruction that General George Washington ordered to be cast and stretched across the river to stop British warships from sailing upriver, devastating local communities and separating the colonial opposition forces.
Doc Bayne will describe, in an illustrated lecture, how he discovered one source of The Great Chain at the original location of Peter Townsend’s iron works, kept hidden from the British deep in Sterling Forest. More links of the “great chain” were forged closer to Newburgh in the Brewster Forge in New Windsor – the origin of the name for Forge Hill Road.
The Newburgh Heritage Center is located at 123 Grand Street. Event fee is a $5 donation, free for Historical Society members. More information is available by call (845) 561-2585 or on the Historical Society of Newburgh website.
Photo of The Great Chain provided.