Washington’s Headquarters, Constitution Island, and West Point are among the county’s historical sites, houses, and tours
ORANGE COUNTY, N.Y. (April 1, 2019) – Henry Hudson was the first of many travelers to visit Orange County, N.Y., when he sailed up the Hudson River and into Cornwall Bay in 1609. George Washington, Noah Webster, and Stephen Crane are just a few of the notable figures who have since called Orange County their home. Now, visitors can travel back in time and discover the county’s rich American history through historical houses, sites, and tours.
“Trace George Washington’s steps to the spot of his famous “farewell address,” witness firsthand our battle reenactments, or explore America’s first Registered Historic Landmark when you visit Hudson Valley sites that were at the epicenter of the Revolutionary War,” said Amanda Dana, Director of Orange County Tourism. “Settled between the Hudson and Delaware Rivers, Orange County’s location led its strategic importance during the war.”
A few of Orange County, N.Y.’s historical sites, houses and tours include:
United States Military Academy at West Point, West Point: Enjoy a guided tour of the U.S. Military Academy, which began as a military post during the Revolutionary War starting in 1778. The campus offers breathtaking views of the Hudson River. Public and group tours are available year-round. An extended two-hour cemetery tour, which explores the West Point Cemetery and Old Cadet Chapel, is available weekends from April-May and daily from June through October. Related exhibits can also be found at the West Point Museum. www.westpointtours.com
Constitution Island, West Point: All board! Take a boat ride departing from West Point’s South Dock to and from the island to receive a guided tour of Revolutionary War fortifications and the grounds of the Warner House. Named by American colonists fighting for their rights under the British Constitution, George Washington was tasked by the Continental Congress to set up military defenses in the area. In April 1778, a chain of forged iron links, supported by floating logs, was stretched across the Hudson River from West Point to Constitution Island. Open Wednesdays in June through September. Reservations required. www.constitutionisland.org
Fort Decker, 127 Main Street, Port Jervis: Built by Revolutionary War patriot, Lt. Martinus Decker in 1793, the fort is the oldest building in the City of Port Jervis. The building was burned by Tory Mohawk Joseph Brant, then rebuilt and used as a canal hotel during the 1820s, housing John Jervis for whom the city was later renamed. It then served as a private residence until 1958. Museum is open on the last Saturday of the month from May through October, 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. minisink.org
Fort Montgomery State Historic Site, 690 Route 9W, Fort Montgomery: Hike past historic ruins at the 14-acre site of a fierce Revolutionary War battle for control of the Hudson River or explore the site’s museum, which showcases original artifacts and weapons, large-scale models of the fort and the attack, highly detailed mannequins frozen in poses of battle, and an action-packed 15-minute movie of the 1777 assault. Open Wednesday-Sunday, 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. from mid-April through October. www.palisadesparksconservancy.org
New Windsor Cantonment State Historic Site, 374 Temple Hill Road, New Windsor: Nearly 600 log huts housed a community of 8,000 of General George Washington’s soldiers and their families as well as skilled artisans and medical personal during the final winter of the Revolutionary War. It was here that on April 19, 1783, George Washington announced and proclaimed the cease-fire that ended the war. Period style entertainment and programs provide insight into life at an 18th-century military camp and galleries feature original military equipment and documents. Open Tuesday-Saturday, 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., Sunday, 1:00 – 5:00 p.m. from April through October. www.palisadesparksconservancy.org
Washington’s Headquarters State Historic Site, 84 Liberty Street, Newburgh: Home to the Hasbrouck House where George Washington commanded his troops for more than 16 months at the close of the Revolutionary War. A 1910 Georgian Revival style museum building, which contains a museum exhibit entitled “Unpacked & Rediscovered: Selections from the Washington’s Headquarters’ Collection.” Museum open year-round.
Tower of Victory, 84 Liberty Street, Newburgh: A grand reopening is planned for the newly-restored Tower of Victory at Washington’s Headquarters State Historic Site on April 27, 2019. The tower was built to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of the American Revolutionary War. palisadesparksconservancy.org
Find a full list of activities, attractions, and lodging visit the Orange County Tourism website at orangetourism.org. There, visitors can explore the county’s selection of charming B&Bs and select hotels, acclaimed farm-to-table restaurants, and themed adventures, including A ‘Revolutionary’ Tour, Drink Up History – Historic Tavern Trail, and Haunted History Trail, among others.
About Orange County Tourism
Orange County Tourism, based in Goshen, N.Y., is the county’s tourism headquarters and a participant in the I LOVE NY program. A comprehensive listing of area attractions, lodging, and events can be found at www.OrangeTourism.org. Like Orange County Tourism on Facebook for the latest news on local happenings. For a free copy of the Orange County Travel Guide, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 845-615-3860.