People came from Schenectady, Albany, Troy, Cohoes and even New York City to spend a day, a week, a month or the complete summer in the healthful climate and beautiful surroundings of Vischer Ferry. As quiet 120 years ago as it is today, the village was an ideal spot to escape from the noise and turmoil of the city. [Read more…] about Vischer Ferry As A Summer Resort
Imagine the Mohawk River flowing with more force than Niagara Falls. Around 22,000 years ago, that’s exactly how it was. During the last ice age, the Laurentide Glacier began to melt, forming a large lake atop the glacier. As the glacier receded north, it opened access to the Mohawk River, which for thousands of years had been buried beneath the two-mile thick block of ice. Suddenly, all that lake water had somewhere to go.
The deluge of water that was released was so great that it carved an entirely new riverbed. It was so great in fact, that geologists gave the river a new name; the Iromohawk. Water rushed down the valley, carving away the cliffs of Clifton Park, the gorge at Cohoes, and the channel at Rexford. The river also curved back onto itself, creating the bend around Schenectady that the Mohawk follows today. [Read more…] about A Brief History of the Mohawk River
David Fiske, a regular contributor to New York Almanack, will give a lecture on “The Kidnapping of Free Citizens before the Civil War,” as part of the Clifton Park-Halfmoon Library’s First Friday series on Friday, June 3rd. [Read more…] about Kidnapping of Free Citizens Before the Civil War (Virtual Event)
April 14th marked the anniversary of Abraham Lincoln‘s assassination by John Wilkes Booth in 1865. This tragic event, like the later assassination of John F. Kennedy, had a tremendous impact on the nation.
There was a period of twenty days of mourning from the time Lincoln was shot to the time he arrived by train for burial at his home in Springfield, Illinois. The first of his twelve funerals was held in Washington, then his funeral procession began by train across the land to Illinois, stopping at major cities for additional funerals. It was the mightiest outpouring of national grief the world had yet seen. [Read more…] about Clifton Park’s Ties to Lincoln’s Assassination
Few remember when Clifton Park had its own amusement park. It was located on the Mohawk River in Rexford near the Alplaus border from 1906 to 1933. [Read more…] about When Clifton Park Had Its Own Amusement Park
There have been many noted murder trials in Saratoga county since the first court was held in the town of Stillwater May 10, 1791 – 100 years ago. The court now in session at Ballston Spa meets about five miles from where the first court was held, at the residence of Samuel Clark, near East Line, Judge John Thompson of Stillwater [then] presiding, he having received the appointment as the first judge of Saratoga county from Governor Clinton. [Read more…] about Murder Trials Of Note In 19th Century Saratoga County
Prior to that time, he occupied a two-hundred-year-old farmhouse on Droms Road, near Grooms Corners in Clifton Park, his home for 98 years. [Read more…] about 20th Century’s Witness: Elmer Droms of Saratoga County
Abraham (1789-1871) and Harriet Best moved from Claverack, Columbia County, NY to Vischer Ferry in the Town of Clifton Park (Saratoga County) in 1815 and built a fine brick federal style home that still stands on Vischer Ferry Road. My late wife Martha and I purchased this home in 1987 and so I live in the “Best House.”
Abraham had red hair and a temperament to match. He was a farmer who seems to have been very opinionated, and sometimes argumentative. He was a staunch member of the Amity Reformed Church, and in 1835 he petitioned the consistory in a suit against a neighboring landowner, John Clute, who he accused of wrongfully removing a fence from his property. [Read more…] about Abe Best: Contentious Clifton Park Resident
The Town of Colonie in Albany County, NY, owns the Stony Creek Reservoir located in southern Clifton Park, just above Vischer Ferry in Saratoga County. It was completed in 1953 at a cost of $1,800,000 and covers 297 acres holding 1.4 billion gallons of water that is carried by pipes under the Mohawk River to the residents of Colonie.
The Latham Water District closed the floodgates on the dam across Stony Creek in the beginning of June 1953. By June 14 the lake began to form with a depth of 12 feet. [Read more…] about Stony Creek Reservoir: A Short History
This year marks the 192nd anniversary of the establishment of Clifton Park. Separated from the Town of Halfmoon on March 3, 1828, it was the last town to be formed in Saratoga County.
The first Town Board meeting occurred on April 1, 1828 at the inn of James Groom at Grooms Corners. The first town officers were elected, and town justices, highway supervisors, and school district commissioners were all selected. The first supervisor of the new Town was Ephraim Stevens who ran a large hotel. (He is now buried under a 1972 addition to the Clifton Park Methodist Church). [Read more…] about How Clifton Park Got It’s Name