Ossining New York History

The Westchester County Genealogical Society publishes a series of articles as part of its "Giving back to New York" series. The first of these, "New York History in the County," a survey of the cities in our county, is published by the Westbury Historical Society.

The house, known as Highland Cottage, was in the Dickey family at the time of construction, but there are no surviving accounts or books about it. A drawing of the house appears in a Westchester County history published in 1886, and the New York Public Library has assembled excerpts of stories by residents that give us an insight into the lives and times of Westbury residents during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The source of at least some of these stories could be Judith Sanborn, whose story of "The Mud House" was told to her by a resident of this house and reprinted in her book "New York History in our County" (1887).

The cemetery was recently removed from the State Register of Historic Places, but the Historical Society is waiting for it to be included in the National Register. The National Register of Historic Places, which listed it in 1982, considers it one of the oldest cemeteries in the United States and the only one in Westchester County.

The Westchester County Historical Society also has extensive manuscripts containing information about many of the county's older cemeteries. NYS DEC, in its Guide to New York State History, calls the region "well-written and beautifully printed history." For an index of naturalizations in our district, please visit the State Department's website for Immigration and Naturalization and the New Yorker's website for naturalized citizens.

Besides Sing Sing Prison, another important historical site in Ossining is the Aqueduct, built in the 1840s. It was designed to transport water from the Croton reservoir in New York City and was modelled on a water suction system in ancient Rome. At the same time, concrete arches were built in Brooklyn and houses were built on the Cleft Ridge Span in Prospect Park, which were built between 1871 and 1872 and started and finished in 1872.

The Greek revivalist structure, sometimes referred to as the Temple of Tragedy, sits on a rock overlooking the men's prison in the valley below. Coogan's Bluff overlooks the site of Sing Sing Prison in Ossining, New York, USA, and has become a popular nickname for it. In the valley below, a Greek building - the one that serves for the revival - the church of St. John the Evangelist, or sometimes the "temple of tragedy," towers over the bluff that overlooks the man - the prison.

The Ossining Village Board of Trustees has created the Monument Preservation Commission to prevent further damage and loss of history. In 1881, the city considered changing its name to Garfield Plains in honor of the recently assassinated president, but dropped the idea after the New York State Historical Society and the American Historical Association objected to the renaming of Garfield Plains in honor of President John F. Garfield Jr., the first president of the United States of America. The city had considered changing the name of "Ossining" (the original name of the village) in 1882 and dropped it after objecting to its use as the name for the former Sing Sing prison in the valley below the men - the Temple of Tragedy, a Greek revival structure in the Church of St. John the Evangelist, or sometimes the "Temple of Tragedy" in Ossined, New York, USA, in Coogan's Bluff, near the SingSing prison where President Garfield was assassinated on April 4, 1884. In 1881, the cities considered changing their name from the original name "Osining" to "Garland Plains" in memory of a recently assassinated president and his wife, President George H.W. Bush, and at the same time they considered changing it to "Garfield Plains" to honor him. But the idea was dropped due to objections from residents and local historians, as well as the state Historical Commission.

In October 1828, the Sing Sing Correctional Facility was officially opened, and New York State legislature provided $20,100 for the project. When Auburn Prison (the one in Greenwich Village dating from 1797 and built in 1816) was overcrowded and its supervisor, Elam Lynds, was overcrowded, the Legislature commissioned him to build a new, more modern prison. They wanted a prison similar to the one in Newgate (built near the village of Greenwich in 1797) And Auburn (built in 1816), but bigger and more spacious.

In 1825, Lynds took 100 Auburn inmates on a barge on the Erie Canal on a freighter that took them to the Hudson River, where he forced them at gunpoint to build the new prison. The prisoners worked 10-hour shifts in an isolated local quarry that eventually formed marble, and the prisoners worked 10 hours a day, seven days a week.

More About Ossining

More About Ossining