V. Everit Macy Grave Site

A little over a month ago I did a post on A Wealthy Man. In that post I included a picture I’d found on the internet showing his grave site (actually it’s not just him. His wife, Edith is also there as are a number of other Macy’s). I wasn’t too happy with that picture so I returned to Sleepy Hollow Cemetery with a friend to take my own pictures.

The gravesite is actually on two levels. The lower level seems to be empty. The upper level contains a large bench overlooking the graves themselves and the River Hudson.

View of the bench.

Another view of the bench.

Grave of V. Everit Macy. For more information see: A Wealthy Man

Grave of Edith Carpenter Macy. For more information see: A Wealthy Man

I had walked past this grave site many times before and was surprised that I had not noticed to whom it belonged. I guess that was before my involvement with the Briarcliff Manor-Scarborough Historical Society.

I was even more surprised to discover that next to this gravesite is another magnificent monument, this time to James Speyer. I’d even taken a picture of this before (See: Sleepy Hollow Cemetery- Structures, Final Picture). The Speyer and Macy gravesites are right next to each other, just as their estates were across the road from each other in Briarcliff Manor. I was amazed that I’d missed the Speyer gravesite on the many occasions I’d walked by it. My house is on what used to be the Speyer Estate. (See: Here’s where we live).

I took some pictures of the Speyer grave site too. It looks a lot different from when I took the earlier picture. Then it was difficult to make out anything. It was extremely dirty. Now it looks as if it’s been recently cleaned. I’ll post the pictures soon.

Taken with a Sony RX100 M3.

The Trial of Major John André

Yesterday I attended an interesting (for those who are interested in US Revolutionary War History, of course) presentation (actually more of a re-enactment) of The Trial of Major John André. It was organized by Revolutionary Westchester 250 as one of the many events and programs commemorating the American Revolution in Westchester County, in the run up to the 250 Anniversary in 2026. The two excellent performers were from “Drama From the Past, LLC. First Person Historical Performances”. The re-enactment was hosted by the Briarcliff Manor Public Library.

For those (particularly my friends in the UK) who may not be familiar with the story I’ll include this short quote from a recent article:

“It is September 29, 1780, the start of André’s trial. General George Washington has just learned the devastating news that American General Benedict Arnold has betrayed his Country and was about to surrender Fortress West Point to the British. Arnold’s accomplice, British Major John André, was captured in Tarrytown, by militiamen John Paulding, David Williams and Isaac Van Wart. André now faces a military tribunal at the Old Dutch Church in Tappan, NY. A Board of Officers has been appointed to decide whether or not he is an officer of the British Army or a spy. Having been captured behind enemy lines, out of uniform and carrying incriminating documents, André is faced with a monumental task of wriggling free from the grim fate that awaits.”

Great fun. I really enjoyed it.

Above: Gary Petagine plays Judge Advocate John Laurence, who prosecuted.

Below: Sean Grady (who portrays Major André). I was sorely tempted to ask him if I could try on his jacket.😀He did a great British accent too.

Taken with an iPhone SE II.

House on Old Briarcliff Road

I love this house. It’s on the corner of Scarborough Road and Old Briarcliff Road – opposite All Saints Church and about a five minute walk from my house.

It was built around 1830 on property even older, possibly going back to the 17th century.

According one of the houses owners, it has secret rooms in the basement and the attic and is reputed to have been a stop on the “Underground Railroad.”

Taken with a Fuji X-E3 and Fuji XF 10-24mm f4

A visit to Merestead – Overview

I recently went with a friend to the Merestead Estate in Mount Kisco. I had three reasons for going there: First, my friend offered to take me to visit somewhere interesting and I was only too keen to go; Second, I’d never been there; Third, there’s a connection to the work I’m doing for the Briarcliff Manor-Scarborough Historical Society (BMSHS). Last September I helped prepare a presentation on Walter Law’ Mysterious Lanterns. William Sloane, the owner of Merestead was a good friend of Walter Law (the founder of my village: Briarcliff Manor) and was for many years his partner at W. & J. Sloane, a luxury furniture and rug store in New York City that catered to the prominent and the wealthy. While researching the presentation we came across a photograph showing one of the lanterns. This was not a surprise as we already knew that Law had given one of the lanterns to Sloane. What was a surprise was that in the same picture, in the distance we could just about make out what looked like another lantern, the existence of which was unknown to us. So we just had to go an take a look.

“Merestead, the country estate of William Sloane, includes a large neo-Georgian mansion completed in 1907, a nineteenth-century farm complex modified at approximately the same date, and 136 acres of open fields, gardens, and woodlands. Approximately nine acres at the northwest corner of the estate property was sold off during the mid-twentieth century. The estate is located in a rural area of northern Westchester County on Bryam Lake Road east of the village of Mount Kisco, New York, There are ten contributing historic components which constitute the historic Merestead estate complex. The estate buildings and entire original estate lands have remained virtually unchanged since the early twentieth century and the property contains no non-contributing structures.” (United States Department of the Interior, National Park Service, National Register of Historic Places Inventory—Nomination Form)

Taken with a Fuji X-E3 and Fuji XC 16-50mm f3.5-5.6 OSS II

West Point Foundry

According to the National Park Service:

Of the four historic ironworks selected by President James Madison to supply artillery to the U.S. military, only West Point Foundry remains. Operating from 1818-1911, the foundry gained renown during the Civil War by producing Parrott guns, cannons whose range and accuracy gave the North a distinct advantage (prompting a visit from President Abraham Lincoln in 1862). A technological marvel that helped spark America’s rise as an industrial superpower, West Point Foundry also manufactured some of the nation’s first locomotives, ironclad ships and pipes for New York City’s water system. Today, nonprofit Scenic Hudson is responsible for transforming the 97-acre site into an “outdoor museum.” Trails through the wooded preserve, located in a tranquil ravine, pass the significant ruins of foundry buildings. Interpretive features, including a full-scale representation of the boring mill’s 36-foot waterwheel, explore the foundry’s contributions to the Industrial Revolution, its role in the Civil War and the land’s astonishing ecological renewal.

I’ve been here a few times, but not recently. It’s easily reached by public transportation: there’s a trail that starts from the southern end of the north-bound platform of the Cold Spring Metro North station.

Walkway to the gun testing platform. I believe that at the time of my last visit the walls on the left were covered in vegetation and were barely visible.

The gun testing platform. From here they fired cannons across the marsh to make sure they were working.

Decoration on the top of the gun testing platform

This and the following picture are of Administration Building, the only intact building that remains. When I first came here the cupola was missing. It was on the ground being restored. It seems that they’ve done some more restoration: the brickwork seems to be in better shape.

This and the following picture show Foundry Brook


More ruins

Reproduction of a portion of the water wheel, over which Foundry Brook flowed and which drove the Foundry machinery.

For more information see here and here.

Taken with a Fuji X-E3 and Fuji XC 16-50mm f3.5-5.6 OSS II