Resorts Hunter

Hunter Boarding Houses, Resorts and Hotels

Extracted from Beers, History of Greene County, by Annette Campbell

A passing glance along the several turnpikes and roads may be of a historical value in years to come, when this region is developed; for it is the current opinion that the prosperity of these highland towns is yet in its infancy. To be sure, many thousand visitors find their way to the Catskills every summer, but compared with the millions who seek health, recreation, and rest at mountain and seaside resorts during the summer months, they are but a handful, easily lost sight of among these mountains and their valleys.
The boarding houses and more pretentious hotels, with but few exceptions, are situated either on the turnpike leading from east bounds of the town westward to Hunter village, or on its branch intersecting at Tannersville, and running thence to Plaaterkill Clove. Commencing at the eastern side, on the Mountain House road, situated on the verge of the famous plateau, known as Pine Orchard, stands one of the two pioneer hotels of the region, upon whose registers have been inscribed the names of nearly all of the men and women famous in every circle of life within the last 50 years. With this hotel, as with its palatial neighbor still higher up, the New Kaaterskill, it is sufficient but to mention their names, as no better, more convenient, systematically managed hotels exist in any country. Passing out of the park, one finds the Glen Mary Cottage, with John V. Scribner as proprietor. Mr. Scribner is a native of Catskill. He moved to Hunter for the purpose of following his vacation of lumbering, but the demands of the location changed his plans, as well as his house. Situated at the park toll-gate, he enjoys the advantages of the famous overlooks, nooks, and falls, as attractions.  The next is the far-famed Laurel House, at the Kaaterskill Falls. For more than 53 years the Schutts have acted host, and for over 50 years a register has been kept. Peter Schutt, the father of the well-known landlord, J. L. Schutt, came to these falls in 1825, and soon afterward erected a small cabin inn.  In 1832 the register was open to the public.  In 1850 the Laurel House was built with a capacity for accommodating 25 guests.  Enlargements have been made, and it now accommodates 200. No visitor to the mountains should let pass a visit to this house and falls.  Its tables, its attaches, its scenery for quiet grandeur, its wines, and its landlord and landlady, are all rivals of the best.
A few rods from this laurel nook is the Laurel House station on the Kaaterskill Railroad, to which excursions are made daily. Up the hill and near is the Mountain House road with a thoroughly laid and well kept road bed. This was built by Mr. Beach, and leads from the Mountain House to the Hunter Turnpike. The Hunter Turnpike was ceded by the town to the Hunter Turnpike Company as early as 1821. In 1831 the amount of capital paid in had amounted to $4,858.94.  This had been paid for extensions and new routes, to Avery, Olmstead & Burris, Durham parties, the contractors.
The elevation of these table lands and smaller hills at this point is fully 2,500 feet, but the whole country around being one broad plateau, with its mountains, the visitor cannot realize the altitude until he, by some vista through the clove or by some overlook, catches a glimpse of the valley lands nearly 3,000 feet below and less than three miles eastward.
From this point westward to Delaware county, the road continues in nearly a direct line, over a varied undulating country. The boarding house nearest to the Mountain House, and its imposing panorama---imposing through the very simplicity of its features---is that of E. Adams.  The next is that of Nelson P. Scribner, Gem of the Catskills, built in 1869, which accommodates about 35 guests.   A farm of 50 acres supplies the table with plenty of fresh produce. From this point Haines Corners depot is one and one-fourth miles distant.  It is two miles from the Mountain House, and one-half mile from the Kaaterskill Falls, and four miles from Tannersville. George Reed's Highland View House is pleasantly located a short distance beyond. This house was built for a boarding house in 1879 by Mr. Reed, who, aided by a five years experience at the Mountain House, acts the host in a host-like manner. Te house has a capacity for 40 guests.  David Edward's Sylvan Cottage, on the site of one of the earliest erected cabins, has convienent rooming capacity for 15 persons, who may also find board there.  Sunset Cottage, Jeremiah E. Haines, proprietor, was erected 1874, and accommodates 50 guests. Continuing on one passes High Peak Cottage, a farm-like looking cottage, the property of Jeremiah Haines, a gentleman of the old stock.  Mr. Haines, now nearly four score years of age, is yet hale and hearty, and is one of the oracles of the region; he was born and bred in Hunter, and a listener to his tales will be carried back to the days when the land was flowing with hardships, instead of milk, honey and maple sugar.  Mr. Haines has never ridden a rod on the steam cars (trains-AC).  His house can accommodate 10 visitors. In the rear of his house is a well marked mound, said to be the grave of an Indian Chief, and a few rods further down the old Indian trail can be pointed out that leads to the lakes and down the clove.  Within sight of this is the commodious Hilton Hotel, W. I. Hallenbeck, manager.  It is a house that comfortably accommodates 125 guests. Situated in the heart of the mountain region, nearly 3000 feet above tide level, with large airy rooms, an excellent opportunity is offered to those who desire a pleasant retreat from the cares and troubles of business or professional life, or the constant and wearying annoyances of the city.  Jesse Haines and Aaron Haines offer accommodations for about 25 and 30 guests, respectively, in neat cottages, a quarter of a mile or so below.  At this point a branch road leads northward, upon which, one mile from Haines Falls depot, is picturesquely situated Glen Cottage. This is the property of Owen Glennon, Esq.,  one of Hunter's prominent citizens.  The view from here is wide and picturesquely varied. The site of this house was originally occupied by a farm house built by William Dietrich some 40 years ago. It was afterward owned by a man named Barter. It reverted back to the Hunter estate, and was bought by James Glennon in 1861. He enlarged the house and in 1872 commenced keeping boarders.  In 1873 he sold it to his son Owen, who has made further improvements at different periods until now it has a capacity for 90 guests.
Returning to the turnpike, we pass the Haines Falls Methodist Episcopal church, and come to the corners known as Haines Corners.  Here is located a station of the new road. Haines Corners House is owned and kept by Miles N. Haines. It was erected in 1864, with a capacity for 20 boarders. Enlarged at different times, it now accommodates 90. The house has connected  there a spacious billiard saloon and a bowling alley.  This point is three miles from High Peak, one mile from the clove, and three-fourths of a mile from the beautiful Haines Falls, and the grand and sublime gorge through which the waters of the Kaaterkill tumble.  From here the clove turnpike commences, going eastward. Situated upon this at a point which commands a beautiful view of The Vista. This site was first built upon in 1849 by Aaron Haines. It was then used as an inn by the few who visited this section, among whom were Cazalier, Kinsit, and Durand, the famous artists, who worked principally at Haines Falls.  In 1876 it was enlarged to a capacity of 30 guests. Mr. Haines dying in 1883, the property reverted to his daughter, Mrs. E. S. Scott, who now runs the place. The next boarding house is the Haines Falls House, good sized, cool, with piazzas. Following the foot-path in the rear of the house to the wooded brink of the clove, one passes through a gate to the stairs leading down the deep descent, where the falls can be seen in all their grandeur.  No stranger grudges the 25 cents he pays here for the sight. This house was built in 1864 by Charles W. Haines, with a capacity for 30 guests, but the demands of the visiting public has necessitated improvements at two distinct periods.  It now accommodates 90. From this vicinity, and back in a northwest line to the commanding location chosen by F. B. Thurber, one of New York's millionaires, who in 1883 built three quaintly constructed cottages, two miles north of Tannersville proper, and near Star Rock, one of the grandest vistas is to be had of the valley below, through the rift in the mountains, called the Kaaterkill Clove. With the grand perspective of the foreground, a glimpse through the rift seems like a miniature of another world---a vision of the beautiful land---as if a small map was spread out with its fields, its meadows, its forests, beautifully toned and tinted by the ever changing atmospheric effects.
    "With streams and lakes, diminished, like the dwellings of man, into
     insignificance. The Hudson, lessened to a rill, is likened to a riband
     laid over a ground of changing green. Still further on, the swelling
     uplands can be seen, and then far along the horizon, mountains
     piled on mountains, vale after vale, in impressive and sublime con-
     fusion, melting into the distance, rising range above range, peak
     after peak, till the loftiest fades into the blue of the sky."
These views, for there is another equally as grand to be seen through the Plaaterkill Clove, form, a picture no visitor can ever forget.  Mr. Thurber has recently bought at this point about 150 acres, upon which he intends to build more cottages, a school-house, church, store, and to lay the same out into lots and streets.
Near the Methodist Episcopal church, a short cut to the main turnpike is made. On this road, John O'Hara built his well located house, in 1871, on land bought from Norman Gray, who purchased directly of the Hunters. From this point an admirable view of all the different meadows, ranges and peaks in the vicinity, in all their picturesqueness and grandeur, and framed by the mountains and cliffs that go to make the framework of the Kaaterkill Clove, a delightful view is to be had of the noble valley below, and beyond.  Passing on to the main road again, the next boarding establishment is that of Uriah Haines. It was originally a tavern, built about 50 years ago by James Haines, and was among the earliest of the framed houses. James Haines died in 1879, since which time his son Uriah, has controlled it. Capacity about 20 guests. Just beyond, and opposite Mr. Peter Haines', is the toll-gate; a charge of half a dime is paid, and one comes to another branch road leading by Mrs. Hiram Roe's house, which has an inviting and hospitable air; something that assures one he will be made at home, and where he can enjoy himself at his ease. Further up this road is Upland Cottage. At this point, high up again, and to the northeast of Tannersville, Round Top, Mink, and Hunter Mountains are to be seen in their majesty.  It is owned and run by Cornelius H. Legg, and has accommodations for 50 guests, with a farm of 100 acres connected.  This is also a well patronized house. This road by Mrs. Roe's runs circuitously up over the hills, down past Isaac Showers' , and Thurber's cottages, and comes out at Tannersville proper. There are several small houses on this road; some of which accommodate boarders, among which may be mentioned Mrs. Daniel Parker's, one of the oldest families in this region, and a good, homelike abiding place it would be.

Returning to the turnpike by the toll-gate, and passing westward again, a substantial looking house is seen to the lest, which was built by H. A. Layman, a veteran of the civil war and a native of the neighborhood. It has accommodations for about 50 guests. Just below this house is an inn-like looking structure, at one time a sort of "Hub" of the country around. It was built by Martin Eggleston and was afterward run as a tavern by Samuel Perkins, followed by a man named Link, and afterward for many years, until his death by James Layman.  Undoubtedly, in the "bark days" and the teaming ones, much of old Jamaica or Medford made warm the bodies as well as the conversation of the many drivers,  travelers , and woodsmen.  Mr. Layman was also post master for a long while. At this point, thousands, perhaps millions, of hoop-poles were produced, or bought, for the coopering districts, by the same gentleman and his sons. As this business ceased to be profitable, they engaged largely at the Christmas season in securing evergreens for the New York market, a business at once profitable and which is yet carried on throughout the town.  His son, E.H. Layman, proprietor of the Maplewood, just beyond. This was one of the first framed houses in the town. It was repaired in 1863, and the present building completed in 1875. It has a capacity for 35 guests. Mr. Layman, a native of Hunter, is conversant with its history. He is a veteran of the war, and possesses papers written by his colonel, that prove him to have been among the bravest and most faithful of the soldiers. He was present when General Lee surrendered his sword to General Grant.  Directly opposite is the small cottage of M. O'Hara, accommodating about 25.  In connection with this, Mr. O'Hara has a bowling alley. Guests find this cottage home like, central, and convienent.  On this road live Charles, Edward, and George Haines, Samuel Brewer, and Widow Layman, all of whom, no doubt, will soon be classified as boarding-house proprietors. Nest is the  Mountain Summit House, built in 1870, by S. S. Mulford, Esq., one of Hunter's most successful business men, who has, year after year, been supervisor. His house is one of the best known resorts in Hunter. It is 2,054 feet above sea level, and has a capacity for 150 guests.  Connected with the house is a cottage, as an overflow house.  Dr. Frothingham, a well known physician of New York city, has built a large summer residence a few rods west of this, where he spends his summers with his family and their friends. Opposite is Summit Cottage, erected in 1880 by Homer H. Paine, Mr. Paine, being a thorough mechanic, built for himself a well planned and ventilated building, which will accommodate about 20 guests.
The Woodward House, erected in 1882 by Leonard Woodward, proprietor, accommodating 30 boarders, is next. It is so situated that the life and bustle of Tannersville can be seen, and the quiet enjoyed.  The Lexington ranges are also discernable. To the right leads another branch road, which takes one to the house of James H. Flanagan, which accommodates 20 guests.  Mr. Flanagan is one of Hunter's best read and informed men; an ex-soldier and a brave man.  On the road leading to the left, the old Plaaterkill road, an upon which Samuel Haines first settled (now the property of "Doc" Campbell), is situated Meadow Brook House, owned by A. Stimpson Haines, and has ample capacity for 35.  A few rods below is Tannersville station.  Following the main road from this branch, one comes to Tannersville proper---named probably from the habit the tanners had of congregating in and about these numerous early taverns.   Just east of where the Summit House stands, the hill, in those days, was known as Jockey Hill. A small tavern stood there many years, and like all taverns, had its jests and stories, and its coterie of nightly visitors.  It was first kept by Abram Brewer. Near this, and below, lived his father-in-law, Edward Eggleston, a native of Danbury, Connecticut, who brought with him the well known Yankee admiration for horse-flesh and trading, and the story that hung around the beams of this hotel bar-room, was that trading horses with his son-in-law one morning, before night he had traded horses 14 times with as many different men, receiving with much boot, the same horse that he started with in the morning. Many stories ate told of his various trades, but none to his disparagement as a Connecticut Yankee.  "Uncle Bill Haines" for many years kept a tavern just below this last site.
In Tannersville is a center, the post and telegraph offices being here. A well-stocked modern drug store is here, with a competent compounder of "Esculapius" most learned prescriptions, in Mr. Rightmyer, and a genial gentleman.  A few rods above is Esculapius, himself, in the person of Dr. George Hainer, at whose neat and tasty house 10 guests can be lodged.  Above, on the same side as the drug store, is located Campbell's Tannerville Mansion, formerly known as Tannersville Cottage. It is owned and run by George Campbell, as they say. "a right clever fellow."  The building is finely situated above the road, opposite Fromer's commodious store, and contains accommodations for 75 guests, in large, airy and newly furnished rooms.
E. B. Howard, the veteran wood turner, accommodates about 15 persons; he also supplies fancy wooden ornaments, made from native woods, from a small bazar.  It is said that some of the handsomest "excresences" and knurls in the country are to be found among the Katzberg forests.  The old weather stained up-and-down saw-mill immediately back of his bazar, is one of the few old-tome land marks of the town. Opposite Mr. Howard, is a competitor in wooden ware, a summer garden, a rifle range, and photograph gallery, owned by a German gentleman, a Mr. Bickerman.  We now come to Tannersville Four Corners, and Roggen's Mountain Home, with which every visitor to these [parts during the past ten years is well acquainted. The Four Corners of Tannersville have been the site of an inn since the days of Harlow Perkins, one of the earliest settlers. At that time the annual elections were held here. Later it was run and owned by Norman Gray, who met his death by accident in the clove, in April 1865. It was afterward run by his son, who in 1869, sold to the present well known proprietor, Aaron Roggen.  He, in 1872, enlarged and repaired the old house, and again, in 1879, made the extensive improvements now to be seen. Here, but one-fourth of a mile from the depot, is the post office.  A farm of 200 acres supplies all farm products. It is the "Hub" of Tannersville, as Van Pelt's Hunter House  is the "Hub" of Hunter village, and O'Hara's of Lexington, and the name, Roggen's Mountain Home, is no misnomer. At this point, two blacksmith shops are now doing a good business, one owned by George Campbell, the other by Nelson Campbell, who is the proprietor of the small hotel and saloon to be seen near by. Mr. Campbell has also a small boot and shoe establishment. There are two barber shops located here, and the Mountain Home billiard room and bowling alley. One of the largest stores to be found in the mountain region is that of Jacob Fromer at this point. It was established by himself in a small way in 1874, in the basement of the Cascade House. He remained there two years, when a demand for more commodious quarters compelled the erection of a portion of the present commodious building. This he completed in 1882. Being the only general merchandise dealer in the vicinity, he is compelled to carry a large summer supply stock, upward of $30,000, in hardware, tinware, flour, grain and feed by the carload, phosphates, lime, carpets, mattings, groceries, dry goods, clothing, fancy articles, in fact, everything. The building he now occupies in 60X68 feet, four stories, including a basement, and Tannersville can well boast of its store.
Just south of the Four Corners, and nearer the Tannersville depot, Mr. Frank Eggleston, one of the enterprising young men of the mountains, a son of G. N. Eggleston, erected The Mountain Retreat in 1878, and in 1882 brought its dimensions to the present size, accommodating about 35. It is well located, well ventilated, and has good drainage. Going towards Hunter village, a few rods from the "Corners, " is Egglestons Cascade House, one of the longest established, and among the few well known summer resort houses of the many among the Catskills. In years gone by, when Hunter was the scene of much activity in the tanning line, and the magnet for tanners of all nationalities and characters, this spot, like a few others, was long the site of a country tavern or ale house, which, beside being the resort for this nomadic class, was the Mecca and the paradise of many a VanWinkle, VanBummel, Vedder, or the Scotchman O'Shanter, and undoubtedly the scene of many such as we find so graphically described by a Thomson or an Irving. It was long kept by a man named Hedden. The present genial and hospitable proprietor, Nelson Eggleston, a native of Hunter and a descendant of one of the earliest settlers, who emigrated from Danbury, Connecticut, purchased the farm and has remodeled the house and rebuilt it to the present size. Originally accommodating about 17 persons, he can now comfortable accommodate 75. There is an abundance of fine shade, and pure mountain spring water, and the farm affords a full supply of farm products.  Following westward, one finds John Stickles, as host, at Rocky Bower cottage, accommodating about 15. The well shaded and pleasantly located and home like looking cottage to be seen next, situated at the head of the romantic looking lane leading off from the turnpike, at a bend of the road near the Maple Grove Cottage, about one mile from the post office or Roggen's Mountain Home, is that of Miss Lucy Craig. It was originally built as one of the earliest frame houses in the town, but has been remodeled, repaired, and additions built thereto at different dates, the last being about 1861.  Next to Miss Craig's (who also is owner of a small grocery store) is the Maple Grove House, built by James Brown (deceased). His widow is now hostess. It is a large and convienent house capable of comfortably accommodating about 60 guests. It is located on the turnpike, between Hunter (distance three and a half miles) and Tannersville (distance one-half mile and depot three-fourths of a mile).  A short distance from here is a large and new house, tastily painted, and conveniently situated. It was built for Watson Mulford, who is also host, with new furniture, and airy rooms, accommodating 60 guests.
We next come to one of the largest houses in the town, the Pleasant View House, which is justly named. It is owned by Mr. C. L. Ford and has ample capacity for at least 150 guests. Its dimensions are, with wings, 40X80; 20X40; 30X80; the main building is three stories.  It was leased this season to M. Goodhiem. It was commenced in 1873 by  Mrs. Campbell, and finished by the present owner in 1875. It is certainly among the best of Hunter properties. Still further on is the Catskill Mountain Cottage, having passed two smaller boarding houses, W. H. Smith's and Dennis Brown's.  This cottage is one of the tastiest on this road. It was built in 1877 by Nelson Campbell. It has a capacity for 30 guests. Morris Lester acts as host and is a genial, accommodating landlord.
It was just beyond here that Samuel Merritt and Jacob Carle built their first log cabins. Merritt is said to have been a giant in stature and strength. It is thought that the first crops were sown by one or both of these pioneers about 1790, and that they set out the first orchard in the town. Only a few twisted, dead limbed and knarled trees live today to mark the spot. A joke is traditional of the latter's father that will bear recording. Carle was the father of a large family among which was a disproportionate number of girls. Like the young women of today, they had their sweethearts who, usually, in a brief courtship, declared their love and choice, and were "always accepted."  Such was the case with one of Carle's daughters, and the wedding was announced. Customs change with the years, and our marriage customs are much different from those of earlier days, when a wedding brought to the bride's house the young and old of the region around. A wedding was the event of the season. The bridegroom was usually taken in charge of by the unmarried swains, and amid jokes and much laughter conducted to the house of the bride's father. Arrived there the ceremony would take place in the presence of the assembled guests, after which fiddling and dancing, along with a liberal allowance of the "ardent," created a queer degree of merriness, which usually lasted until daylight. At high midnight a feast was spread before the guests, and the cooking by the bride, and her qualities as house wife, were discussed and generously praised. After supper dancing was resumed, and when the dance was at it's height, a bevy of young ladies would quietly steal the bride away and snugly ensconce her beneath the unbleached sheets of the bed above in the loft. Upon their return the young men would take the bridegroom and place him beside his bride. At this wedding this custom was broken by the genius of the elder Carle. At the supper table a huge custard pudding had been made as the chef-d' auvre of the feast. The guests had been invited to sit around the board. The custard was drawn to the head of the table and dishing commenced; but the guests' faces as it went on, assumed at first a look of repressed levity; then of amazement; then of anxiety; an lastly a long, curiously sad expression, as Jake stuttingly, yet with nonchalance, remarked: "S-S-S-Sal! I wi-wi-wish you'd g-get m-m-ma-married e-very dayl that p-p-p-pudding is da-da-darnaci-cious  ju-ju-julici-ci-cious."  He had eaten it all!!  And it was long a by-word of this neighborhood, "D-dad says he wi-wishes S-S-Sal w-would g-get ma-ma-married ha-e-every day!"
John J. Haines is the proprietor of the next house, which has a capacity for about 20. Patrick Gillespie's house, accommodating 35 guests, is next, and in between this point and Hunter village is a cozy, protected spot; one that, with its meadow and its fine old elms, and the hill at its back, reminds the visitor of some picture painted from a poet's inspiration. It is the farm house of Louis Quick, who is one of the old residents, and whose hospitable and courteous lady is a descendant of the oldest stock. Twelve guests are comfortably cared for in this charming nook. The family of Horace Ingraham, at his commodious farm house, have accommodations for about 15 guests. He is a very old resident of the county, but his son has charge of the premises. Other houses are scattered along the other mile between this and the Hunter Mountain Prospect House, which is the first in the village. It is a new building, situated high up on extensive grounds, and commanding a sweeping view of Stony Clove, Hunter Mountain, and the ranges to the east and west.  It is the first house to be seen from the car (railway-AC) windows coming through Stony Clove. It has accommodations for 200 guests. A few rods west, and on a little lower ground, is the well-known Breeze Lawn House. Its proprietor for the last five seasons, Mr.  VanLoan, is a gentleman peculiarly adapted to the nice duties of the host. It was erected in 1861 by John Burtis, who controlled it for 14 years. A gentleman by the name of Euerdell let it pass into the hands of J. B. Thompson, to whose estate it now belongs. It was the first house in Hunter of any importance thrown open for summer guests. The house is pleasantly situated on a high plateau, facing Hunter Mountain (4,052 feet).  It has accommodations for 80 persons. Thomas Campbell built his house in 1881. The house has pleasant piazzas, and is situated on the main street of the village. It has accommodations for about 20. Mr. Campbell is one of the village smiths.  Central House and cottage, as its name indicates, is centrally located, and for many years has been one of the large houses of the village. It was built by James Rusk, and in 1880 passed into the hands of his son William J. Rusk. It has a capacity for 125. It has pleasant grounds and surroundings.  VanPelt's Hunter House is emphatically the hotel of Hunter. As such, and as a commodious boarding house, it has long enjoyed a just and substantial reputation.  It was originally built for a dwelling house by a Mr. Tyler, in Edwardsville's early days---a small, rough and unpretentious affair. As the village industries grew, the need of some sort of an inn was felt, and thus it was converted into a village tavern. As a hotel it has had among its landlords,  Frederick Beach, Esq., --- _____Rush, _____Layman, "Phil" Burgess, Thomas Ford, and, lastly, Mr. VanPelt, who purchased the property when it contained but ten rooms. By judicious improvements, and suitable additions made at different periods, there can now be accommodated comfortably about 175 guests. The rooms all command pleasant views, and are neatly and comfortably furnished. Butter, eggs, milk, and vegetables, fresh from the vicinity, go to make the table and cuisine unexceptionable. Good livery and stabling for horses. The house is open the year around. A large billiard room is connected, in which the village barber "lathers and shaves, and frizzles the chin" of those who may need his services. There is also a well made bowling alley. Hunter village, at this point, is 1,642 feet above tide level.
Mountain Ash Cottage, one of the next houses, was built in 1853, as a private residence, by E. D. Ingersoll, long the village physician. It was subsequently sold to Edwin Atwater, about 1855. After his decease, in 1877, Mrs. Atwater converted it into a boarding house, with a capacity for accommodating 15. William A. Douglas opened his doors to summer guests five years ago. The house was originally a farm house, built by James Douglas, the father. It was enlarged to its present capacity of 25, and is located in the center of the village. Frederick Beach, Esq., one of Hunter's influential and substantial citizens, accommodates a few boarders.  Mr. Beach, in official and private life, has always been a man of sound judgment, and his guests are well entertained. John J. Carr built his boarding house this season (1883), on the bluff of the Schoharie Kill, directly opposite Hunter Mountain and Colonel's Chair---named by Seth Green, Esq., in honor of Col. Edwards.  He can entertain at this cottage some thirty guests. In connection with the house is a farm of 100 acres. It is but a few rods from the depot.
The Kaatsberg is perhaps among the best of the new buildings in the town, and has certainly a very attractive front elevation, and is strictly modern in its architecture. Its grounds are tastily laid out, on which lawn tennis and croquet parties have a fine chance to try their skills. The rooms are large, well ventilated, and well furnished. Its piazza extends around upon three of its sides, from which extensive views of the mountain and Colonel's Chair can be had.  It is situated in the center of the village on the banks of the Schoharie Creek, with free bath-houses for its guests. It has accommodations for 60. Robert Elliott, the proprietor, formerly a merchant of Hunter, and one of the oldest business men in the section, is a genial gentleman.
The Plaaterkill Road, over which the excursionists to this grand setting of Nature and to Overlook Mountain must pass, going from Hunter, Jewett, Lexington, etc., branches off from the Hunter Turnpike at Tannersville Four Corners. It is quite meandering in its route, circling around the base of Plum Hill, and thence into the valley of the Schoharie Kill that cradles its infant waters. The road is not a hard road to travel, though there are some hills. To the city visitor, its, scenery, replete with all the varied beauty which Nature has so originally and lavishly thrown into the makeup of this wild region, the ride is a continued and genuine delight.
The boarding houses along this road are few---indeed, there are but few of any houses---and these are situated at Tannersville, or near the clove.  At the former, near the depot, is Cold Spring Cottage, built in 1877 by Daniel McGrath, and subsequently owned by James H. Smith. This is at the foot of Plum Hill. Its name locates the well known spring so frequently visited by the numerous pedestrians. Clear as a mountain crystal, pure as the purest of mountain springs, nearly as cold in summer as in winter, it is indeed worthy the visit of the thirsty, and is certainly entitled to its name. W. H. Dykeman accommodates guests in his cottage, and contemplates the erection of a fine building in a season or so upon a well shaded and elevated site. William Wooden, an elderly and interesting resident, has a commodious house in which he accommodates some 50 guests. He certainly has a grand location to the lover of the picturesque. Tannersville, and the numerous hotels along Hunter Turnpike in the foreground, backed to the northeast by the Jewett Ridge, and to the west by the mammoth Hunter Mountain, and still beyond, the, the Lexington Hills and blue ones of Prattsville, go to make one of the many beautiful landscapes to be found among the Catskills and their valleys. Next to Mr. Wooden is the Blythewood, a somber-looking two and a half story structure. It is well located, however.  Passing along by two summer cottages, owned by Mrs. Harrison and Dr. Mueller, respectively, we turn to our left and enter into the Schoharie valley. The road to our right leads on to Capt. Harmon B. Dibble's settlement and mill, and to Meach's steam mill, owned by Jacob Meach, Esq., a former resident of Catskill. This road leads to Mink Hollow, where  Wilbur Brothers manufacture over 500,000 feet of mountain lumber annually, and on a branch of it along the south branch of the kill, one finds a pleasant summer cottage. Higher up the mountain and on land cleared by his own strong right arm, resides Martin Shields, one of the town's oldest residents, who bought direct from the Hunter's, through their agent, Miller, who superceded Kiersted.
The mills owned by Jacob Meach and Capt. H. B. Dibble produce annually many thousand feet of both hard and soft lumber and timber---the former (erected in 1875 by Captain Dibble) some 500,000 feet.  Near the Captain's mill, the first grist-mill in the town once stood. J.W. Kiersted & Co., who for many years owned a large tannery in Kaaterkill Clove, built by Quackenbush, where the many foundations of a village are to be seen, also owned one at this point.  This point was one of the earliest centers in the town of Hunter, the site of the first mill and tavern.
Passing again to the Plaaterkill road, but few houses are to be found for the first two miles. A few farm houses are seen, among them being that of Michael Farrell, Esq., a veteran lieutenant of the late war, and a man of natural talent. His father was the first naturalized citizen in town, whose papers were a puzzle to Squire Bloomer, one of the town board the year they were presented.  A very pleasant cottage is seen further on to the right, it being that of Edwin Dibble, the champion bowler of the mountains, and the mountain engineer of Kaaterskill Park, whose native skill excelled that of the professionals. The summer residence, a little to the left, belongs to J. M. Canda Esq.  This residence is unique in its way, retaining, even in its improvements, many of the quaintly planned and finished rooms of seventy years ago, the date of the original building. It was once the property of Captain Dibble, who built, owned, and run a saw and a turning mill, whose power was furnished by the "babbling brook." which bounds the garden grounds.
The first house was built by Benjamin McGregor. Mr. Canda, in Belle Air Cottage, has a charming property. Between this point and the clove proper there are but a few residences. Mr. Martin, a wealthy New York dry goods merchant, has a fine summer residence which commands a view of all the grandeur this Plaaterkill amphitheater comprehends. From these points it is eight miles to Saugerties; four to the overlook Mountain; five to Haines Falls; two to High Peak; one to the old Tory Fort (a trip worth taking); seven from Stony Clove Notch, whose sides rise almost perpendicular to the height of nearly 2,000 feet, and where the sun's rays penetrate only four hours in the longest summer days, and ice may be found in the crevices of the rocks during the hottest days of mid-summer. Within three miles of here is Echo Lake, a sheet of transparent water---a beautiful gem set in the top of the mountains. It affords fine fishing, having been stocked with trout and other fish, with a boat-house and boats for rowing and sailing.  The Plaaterkill Falls, within a few minutes walk of here, are owned by Mr. R. Pomeroy. There are some 30 falls on this mountain stream, falling over 2,000 feet in less than two miles. In its upper course there are five made famous for the wild beauty and rugged grandeur  of their path---one of the wildest gorges in the mountains, renowned in history as being the stronghold of the French and Indians in their attack upon the early settlers of the valley of the Hudson.  Through this notch, Logan, the mingo, Brandt, the half-breed, and the chiefs of lesser fame, with their savage, blood thirsty hordes, must have passed down and up; going down in their cowardly stealth and returning up with their scalps and prisoners, who were either to be tortured at the tory rendezvous at the fort as elsewhere mentioned (those for torture marked by blackened faces) or to endure the fatigue of the long burdensome march to Fort Niagara.
The spring from which the Plaaterkill has its source is but a short distance from here. It is also the source of the Schoharie Kill, and what is remarkable of this water shed is that one flows down the east side of the mountain finding the waters of the Hudson in a meandering course of less than ten miles, while the waters running off down the west side travel a circuitous course of more than two hundred to reach the same point to the east---the Schoharie Kill emptying into the Mohawk and that into the Hudson.
The drive from here to the Overlook Mountain House cannot be excelled, if equaled, by any in the region. A fine turnpike sixty feet wide, having been built along the edge of the mountain, affords a drive of four miles in full view of the Hudson and the intervening table land, and many thousands of miles of the surrounding country, and portions of six States, besides hundreds of villages and hamlets, and the Hudson valley for 150 miles.
Hotel Plaaterkill, accommodating 70 to 100, is located adjacent to this open at the top of the clove. It was built in 1878 by S. P. Russell, and subsequently owned by Charles Shaulck,  It was taken on a lease the past season by George W. Keeler.  At this house is located the post office. There are a few others about here who accommodate a few boarders, H. Hommel's house being the largest among them.
The mountains of the Platterkill region have each their own individuality. Their trend is east to west in a semi-circle, forming a wide unequalled amphitheater. They average among the highest. From their tops to the valley, the descent is steep and sudden, and the contrast between the two is as striking as between up and down; but the valley is as interesting in its way as the mountains, and although their scenery is above you, it is as often elevating to be down and look up, as to be up and looking down.  So they think, who summer there, as some of the most invigorating and charming rides are through and from this Plaaterkill valley, and down the clove, as the passes are called in the eastern ranges of the Catskills, and in the western "hollows" or "notches."  The mere proximity to the rushing streams, the health giving odors of the balsam and hemlock, and the echoes that so promptly seize the shouts, laughter and songs of the merry riding parties, and fling them back and forth, from mountain side to mountain side, seem jolly little fellows, out for a frolic, anxious to help increase the pleasure of every one; the light and shade of forest and field, tree and cloud, all go to make the Plaaterkill equal to its neighbor the Kaaterskill. It will be but a few years before the tally-ho coach will carry its numerous devotees from point to point, and the blast of its bugler's horn will startle the echoes of these brave old mountains.

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