Saturday, July 4, 2015


This nautical scene is at a marina on the west side of the Hudson River in New York State, just 50 miles north of New York City.  I find it amazing that a skyline where tree-covered mountains are the tallest features, could be so close geographically, to the NYC skyline, dominated by skyscrapers.  Personally, I will choose mountains over skyscrapers any day! 

In fact, this business sign has an artist's rendering of the area's most famous geographic landmark---Storm King Mountain.  This mountain was a frequent backdrop in the artistic movement known as "Hudson River Art".

These Hudson River kayakers are probably more interested in "the art of paddling" the river, than in the "art of painting" the river!

Even though the sight of fiberglass and plastic kayaks is relatively new, the river was being paddled by the native Americans that first inhabited this area.  In 1685, they were followed by 25 Scottish families that settled around the mouth of Moodna Creek, which empties into the Hudson River.  Some of the Scottish settlers had the title of "laird", which is a generic name for the owner of a Scottish estate, and comes from the same root word as the English word, "lord".  (See notes at end of this article for more details about this word!)

The area was given the name "new Cornwall", because it reminded the European immigrants of its similarity to the County of Cornwall, England.  The gazebo is a reminder that the 1800's were the heyday of Cornwall's fame.  It became a summer resort because of the natural beauty of the river, its mountain vistas, scenic trails, fresh air, and convenience to NYC, by riverboat or rail. 

In the mid 1800's, Cornwall became known as a health retreat, as well as a summer resort.  Knickerbockers ( an old-fashioned term for Manhattan's aristocracy ) would come here to get rejuvenated from a variety of illnesses. 

Many historic structures have been preserved in the village, as evidenced by the old movie theater shown in this photo.  (Notice it also bears the name of their landmark "Storm King" mountain!)

This is the location I was directed to, for the purpose of arranging a guided kayak tour on a section of the Hudson River.  The ticket window that used to sell vistas to be seen on their indoor stage, is now selling tickets to vistas to be seen on the surrounding waterways!

The architecture of this building , with its center clock, and triangular shape, reminded me of something you would see on Disneyland's mainstreet!

Another old-fashioned gazebo on the village green, was decorated for the Fourth of July festivities that were scheduled for the following day!

I was amused that the weathervane on top of the gazebo was decorated with an old-fashioned bicycle design, which is a reminder that bicycling was, and continues to be, a very popular outdoor activity in this area. 

I saw several charming examples of Victorian architecture, and later read that many such edifices were built in this area, to serve as boarding houses to all the folks who came to Cornwall seeking a summer retreat from the city, as well as restoration to good health. 
Even though I was totally confused by the concepts of town vs. village ( e.g., the village of Cornwall-on-the-Hudson is in the town of Cornwall ), exploring Orange County gave me MILES OF SMILES!  Tricia                     (Author's confession: Doing research for this article was the first time I learned that "laird" was anything but the Surname of an acquaintance I have!  Finding out that it was from the same root word as "lord", sent me on a word search: Lord is a general title denoting deference applied to a male person of authority, religious, or political deity.  As a Bible reader, I had noticed the differences in the way the word was used, but did not fully understand .  My references said that the primary reason for the use of LORD in place of God's Hebrew name, is to follow the tradition of the Israelites in not pronouncing or spelling out God's name.  So when God's Hebrew name "YHWH" is used in the Old Testament, English translations usually use "LORD" in all caps.  In contrast, when "Lord" occurs in the Old Testament referring to God, it is usually a rendering of "Adonai", a name or title of God that refers to His lordship.  Now I understand that LORD/YHWH and Lord/Adonai are by far the two most consistent renderings throughout all the different English Bible translations.  I am thankful that these photos from Cornwall will now be a visual aid to help me remember the difference ! )