Step back in time to 1750 at Philipsburg Manor

Step back in time to 1750 at Philipsburg Manor

A few years back on one of our trips to New York we stopped by Philipsburg Manor.  The visitor center is on one side of the lake and provides quite the picturesque view of the Philipsburg Manor.  Philipsburg Manor is located at 381 N Broadway, Sleepy Hollow, NY 10591.  (Sleep Hallow is another one of our favorite stops along the way, but that is a tale for another day!)

Philipsburg Manor was a thriving farming, milling, and trading center owned by the Philipses, a family of Anglo-Dutch merchants. They rented land to tenant farmers of diverse European backgrounds

There are beautiful pathways that lead around the lake.  

This is a historic site and you should realize that some of the buildings are not handicap accessible.  You are able to take your motorized scooter around the lake and up to most of the buildings, but you will have to be able to walk stairs and navigate narrow passageways in order to access some of the Manor.

The historic core has limited wheelchair accessibility. The grist mill, the barn, and the lower kitchen and first floor of the Manor House are accessible using ramps. The Activity Center and the second floor of the Manor House are not wheelchair accessible.

There are a few steps into each building. There is a narrow, steep flight of 12 stairs from the first to the second floor of the Manor House and another similar flight of stairs back down to the first floor.

The old grist mill

Actually, I should say the old “working” grist mill, as it is still functional.  The staff here go out of their way to make you feel like you are really there, 300 years ago. Dressed in period garb, they relate you exactly what it was like to live and work back then. Spinning the stories of how the workers harnessed power from the creek, by diverting its path through the water wheel, spinning the huge stones to grind the wheat.  

Denise and I loved touring the 300-year-old house.

The lighting inside was natural and did not provide the best lighting for photography.  But, in all honesty, the period artifacts inside the house are best seen first hand!

“Period artifacts and touchable reproductions give you an understanding of the people who lived and worked here.”

Enter the new world Dutch barn and help thresh some wheat. With its pastoral setting, rich social history, hands-on activities, and demonstrations of colonial life, Philipsburg Manor provides everybody with an unforgettable experience.

The craftsmanship is amazing!

From the tools they used to the barns they stored them in.  As you tour this “working” Manor, it is almost as if you have been transported back in time to days gone by. These were difficult days to live in, no doubt about that.  The work was hard and the days were long.  The barn had large pass through doors on each end to allow the horse drawn wagons bring the wheat in from the fields to enter in one side and out the other.  The wheat was hung from rafters to dry.  When it was dry, they would beat it on the floor to separate the wheat from the chaff.  Having the doors open on both ends allowed the breeze to blow the chaff away.  Rustically beautiful, functional and built to last, this barn has stood the tests of time!

Let me share with you the most important thing I have discovered.  Where ever you go, whatever you see, share it with others!  Don’t be afraid to stop and smell the roses, to share a smile with a stranger, a meal with friends and build memories together that will last a lifetime!

All photographs in this post were taken by the author, Bill McQueen, amateur photographer, food enthusiast and sometimes traveler.

Comments (2)

  1. It’s always fascinating to come upon an historical gem, and to have the time to spend investigating it, thoroughly. Every part of the country has such marvels.

  2. That is so true! I don’t think we’ve traveled anywhere without finding some hidden gem. You just have to watch out for them and take the time to see them!

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