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The 300th Anniversary of the
Arrival of the Palatines
GERMANTOWN, NEW YORK
German "Palatines" came in 1710 to the upper Hudson Valley, to land
that is today Germantown, Columbia County.
The “Palatines” were driven from the Rhenish Palatinate, a small Electorate
located near the junction of the Rhine and Moselle Rivers in Germany, by
wars and famine. They left their homeland in the so-called Great Migration
of 1709, and settled in New York in 1710.
The History of the Settlement of this area may be said to have begun on,
or about, September 29, 1710, when Robert Hunter, newly appointed
Royal Governor of New York Province, purchased some 6,000 acres of
land on the east bank of the Hudson River, from Robert Livingston, First
Lord of the Manor.
This land was purchased for the purpose of settling some 1,400 or more
German-speaking Palatines from the Rhine Valley and adjacent areas.
These Palatines were to be
settled along the Hudson River,
and put to work manufacturing
Naval Stores, products of the
pine tree, for the British Navy.
Naval Stores is a term which
originally applied to the resin-
based components used in
building and maintaining
wooden sailing ships.
There were two species of pine trees predominant here along the Hudson,
the White Pine and the Pitch Pine.
The White Pine was most
numerous along the river,
but was not suited to the
purpose in mind,
The Pitch Pine also grew
here, but was most
numerous some distance
inland from the river. This
tree was suited to the project
The undertaking of manufacturing Naval Stores proved a
failure and, in the autumn of 1712, the Colony split, with many
of the settlers moving on.
Others elected to remain and
fought through some terribly
By 1724, some 63 families were
firmly enough established to
petition for title to the 6,000
acres purchased by Governor
Hunter in 1710.
This petition was granted in
In 1740 the area was surveyed
and mapped, and those
remaining were given
Indentures of Ownership for
Cadwallader Colden Map. A map of the
six thousand acres of land granted to
Paletine heads of families
Approximate locations of Palatine
Settlements at East Camp in 1710
In the Snyder's Corners-
Half Moon Anchorage area
In the vicinity of Sharp's Landing
Road, Maple Avenue, Maple Avenue
Extension, and Highway 9G
In the area around the junction of
County Road No. 8 and Highway 9G
In the vicinity of present-day
An analemma is a piece of art
conceived by Dea Archbold and Kurt
Art: Analemma Holsapple, both of whom are
descendants of the first settlers of
Germantown in 1710.
This piece of art is created by
recording the spot where the tip of
the shadow of a twelve foot pole
falls at the same time of day for all
365 days of the year.
•Hank Z. Jones; professional genealogist known for his
extensive work with Palatine genealogy.
•Rev. David J. Webber; genealogical research with
expertise in the history of Palatines to America.
•Philip Otterness; Professor of History and Political
Science, Warren Wilson College; Author of Becoming
German: The 1709 Palatine Migration to New York.
•Alice Clark; Palatine DNA project, will talk about findings
and future plans.
Reformed Church in Germantown
Sunday October 3, 2010, 3:00 PM
• Maestro Harold Farberman; composer/conductor and long-time
Germantown resident premieres a new concert work commissioned for
voice and instruments
• Donna Diehl, Conductor; 18th century hymns sung by the Southern
Columbia Community Choir
• Performances by other groups and soloists
• Oral histories; recorded interviews with Palatine descendants will be
available for viewing at the Germantown Library
• Reviewing church and history department documents
• Long-term cataloging project
• Digitizing pictures
• Lindner mapping project
• Researcher Christopher Lindner, Ph.D., archaeologist in residence at Bard
• Archeological excavation of artifacts at the Maple Avenue Parsonage
• Artifacts to be displayed at the Germantown Library
• Field & lab school for students and teachers
• Exhibit designer, Scott Guerin
The following Library activities/programs related to the
Parsonage archaeology project have been arranged.
• Monthly reports on progress.
•Public visits to the Parsonage, one when the Bard
anthropology department is at work
•Visits by groups of Germantown Central School students
•A slide presentation during the tricentennial celebrations about
archaeological research on our early history
• “Ginny’s Book”; publishing of a story of
early life in Germantown, written by
Virginia “Ginny” (Miller) Sherwood.
•Walter Miller’s “History of
Commemoration of the Palatines
Planning is under way for a commemoration to the Palatines in Germantown. The
monument below currently exists across the Hudson River in West Camp.
• Friday, October 8th; A wagon parade down Main Street, honoring local businesses,
farmers, and GCS students. The early evening parade will end at Palatine Park where
participants can join in the Oktoberfest, enjoying plenty of food, cider, perhaps a bonfire
(NYS Permit pending) and music.
• Saturday, October 9th, 11 am to 11 pm; Oktoberfest continues at Palatine Park with
music, free tractor and horse drawn wagon rides, many displays, food vendors, crafters,
farm exhibits, petting zoo, fire displays, an evening teenage dance, rides, children's
games, sales, history exhibits, German food sales and fireworks.
• Sunday, October 10th, 11 am to 7 pm; Oktoberfest continues with
German Oompah Band, a visit from our friends at West Point Military Academy, and all
of the events from Saturday will continue.
FREE ADMISSION AND PARKING
SEE YOU ALL AT PALATINE PARK; ALL WEEKEND
“WHERE THE HUDSON VALLEY COMMUNITY AND FRIENDS COME TOGETHER”
Germantown Central School Projects related to the
Palatine settlements of 1710
•Elementary Drama Production of a Palatine play
•Learning about life in 1710; passages from Ramsey/Miller book
•Discussions about Palatines
•“Then and Now” visual display; including maps, artistic works and essays
•Poetry writing on the Palatine topic
•Field trips to the Parsonage archeological dig
•Broadsides (one page newspapers) and dioramas depicting life in 1710
•Visual timeline of Germantown
•Palatine survey of family members; visit to the Parsonage History department
•And more, including music and art projects
Activities will generate projects to be displayed at the Palatine 300th Anniversary
• Community Spaghetti Dinner at the Kellner Activity Building; Friday, April
30th. Proceeds go towards the Palatine Oktoberfest.
• Banners for telephone polls
• Tree Planting project – Boy Scouts
• Mural to be painted on the salt garage wall
• Garden Club 300th garden party on Saturday, September 25
• Joint exhibition with Saugerties Historical Society
• Monthly publication of newsletter, "The Packet" bringing stories of the
Palatines and news of progress and events relating to the celebration.
Calendar of Germantown 300th Anniversary Events
Sunday , March 21, 2010
4pm: Lenten Hymn Sing at the Reformed Church of Germantown;
Rev. David Tipple’s address will discuss “Palatine Piety”.
Sunday , April 18, 2010
Time TBA: Presentation of German organ composers
contemporary to the Palatine Migration; featuring two organists from
the Old Dutch Church in Kingston
Saturday , May 22, 2010
10am: Hudson Valley Vernacular Architecture (HVVA) Society’s
stone house tour of Saugerties
Exhibit at the Germantown Library of artifacts found in and around
the Germantown Parsonage
Weekend September 11-12, 2010
House tours and visits on both sides of the River
Saturday , September 25, 2010
2pm to 4pm: 300th Birthday Party at the Parsonage, sponsored
by the Germantown Garden Club.
Friday, October 1, 2010
Talks to students at Germantown Central School on Palatine
history by Henry Z. Jones, historian/genealogist, and David Jay
Webber, historian/Palatine descendant and GCS graduate.
Saturday, October 2, 2010
11am to 3pm with lunch break: Seminar at the Reformed Church
in Germantown on aspects of Palatine history and the arrival of the
Palatines in Germantown. Speakers:
Henry Z. Jones, David Jay Webber, Philip Otterness,
and Alice Clark
Reservation desk opens at 9:30 am.
3pm to 4:30pm: Seminar speakers available to discuss
genealogy with seminar participants
Sunday, October 3, 2010
8am to 9:15 am: 300th Anniversary breakfast, hosted by the
Christ Lutheran Church (Viewmont)
10am Ecumenical church service at the Christ Lutheran Church in
Viewmont celebrating the church’s 300th Anniversary
3pm Gala concert at the Reformed Church in Germantown
- Maestro Harold Farberman; Commissioned work for voice and
instruments based on church hymns
- 18th century hymns sung by the Southern Columbia Community
Choir, Donna Diehl, conductor
- Performances by other groups and soloists
Friday, October 8, 2010
Early evening: Wagon parade along Main Street of floats saluting local
businesses and organizations, farmers, and GCS students; ending at
Palatine Park with food and refreshments.
Kick-off of the Palatine Oktoberfest; including food booths, crafters,
music, community bonfire. Free admission and parking.
Saturday, October 9, 2010
11am Opening ceremony of Palatine Oktoberfest and Harvest Festival:
remarks by a distinguished guest followed by daylong family
activities, music, international foods, craft vendors,
demonstrations, dancing, free horse and tractor-drawn wagon rides,
and more. Free admission and parking.
10pm Fireworks to close the first day
Sunday, October 10, 2010
11am Oktoberfest and Harvest Festival continues:
Previous day’s activities plus an oompah band; highlighted by a
visit from our friends at West Point Military Academy
7pm Closing ceremony
For more information
Jerry Smith: firstname.lastname@example.org
518 537 6902
Town Hall: 50 Palatine Rd
Germantown, NY 12526
518 537 6687 Ext.308
Committee: P.O.Box 63
Germantown, NY 12526
Germantown 300th Committee
Nadine Rumke Co-Chair
Jerry Smith Co-Chair
Larry Osgood Treasurer
Power Point created by: Devin Overington