In the late 1700s, the land that was to become the Town of Hunter was part of a vast land grant, the Hardenburgh Patent. The wildness and poor suitability of the area for agriculture delayed settlement of the area until the early 1800s. According to Beers' History of Greene County (1884) the only settlers in the Hunter area at that time were Tory refugees from Putnam County and some people who fled New England in the wake of Daniel Shay's rebellion. The two major resources that brought people into Hunter in the first half of the 19th century were the abundant hemlock trees and the physical beauty of the area.
The Greene County historian in 1927, Jessie V.V. Vedder wrote: “ The scenic wealth of the Catskills lies within the borders of the Town of Hunter. It has been more richly endowed in this respect than any other town in Greene County.” Three cloves with their streams, ravines and cliffs are located in Hunter, along with impressive vistas of the Hudson Valley.
Town of Hunter historian, Dede Thorpe, and president to the Mountain Top Historical Society, Cyndi LaPierre, used vintage images from the MTHS archives and other sources to share the 200 year story of the area Around Hunter, highlighting the resourcefulness of local people earning a living in a wild and beautiful part of New York State.
Around Hunter was released on September 28, 2015 and had a premiere at the Mountain Top Historical Society on October 4, 2015 with a presentation by the authors and book signing. A second event with presentation and signing is scheduled for the Catskill Mountain Foundation Bookstore on November 14, 2015, from 1:00 p.m. until 3:00 p.m. Come in to meet the authors and pick up your signed copy of the latest local history book.
You can purchase your copy of Around Hunter by stopping in at the MTHS Visitors' Center in Haines Falls on Monday, Wednesday or Friday from 1:00 p.m. until 4:00 p.m.. You can also send a check to the MTHS, PO Box 263, Haines Falls, NY 12436 and they can send you a copy. The cost per book, including tax, is $23.75. Please add $3.00 for shipping and handling.