Historic Hudson Valley Announces New Season of Historic Landmark Tours

As trees grow green and Westchester residents ready their wardrobes of short-sleeves and sunglasses, the Historic Hudson Valley starts up its season of guided tours at four local National Historic Landmark properties: Philipsburg Manor, Washington Irving’s Sunnyside, Union Church of Pocantico Hills and Kykuit.

Beginning May 12, visitors can discover stories of historical significance, peruse the properties of former Westchester residents like author Washington Irving and John D. Rockefeller, and study hidden gems by Henri Matisse and Marc Chagall.

Read below about these five properties. Visitors are encouraged to purchase tickets online in advance.

Philipsburg Manor

In addition to touring the gristmill and the Philipsburg Manor house and its period artifacts, visitors to this Sleepy Hollow landmark will learn about the 23 enslaved individuals of African descent who lived and labored on these grounds in 1750. New York’s oldest African American holiday, Pinkster, which has been celebrated since the 1700s, will be commemorated on May 27. The day will include spoken word performances, African drumming, live music and more.

Washington Irving’s Sunnyside

For lovers of American literature, Washington Irving’s former home in Irvington can provide insight into the author’s writings, which include The Legend of Sleep Hollow. This cottage house designed by Irving himself, and its furnishings – many of which are original to Irving as well – have been restored to their 1850s character. On June 10, an event called “Vote Like a Girl” honors the 19th amendment that gave women the right to vote. Interactive and educational activities include a live suffrage debate, photo-opps with suffragette sashes and 19th-century clothing, and STEAM activities.

Union Church of Pocantico Hills

John D. Rockefeller was among the founders of this non-denominational Protestant church, which was formed in Tarrytown in 1915.  Inside the stone building are stained-glass windows by two notable European master artists: nine windows by March Chagall and the last commissioned work by Henri Matisse. Read more about it in this previous ArtsNews article.

Kykuit, the Rockefeller Estate

After finding Standard Oil, John D. Rockefeller became one of the richest men in America; he subsequently became one of the country’s biggest philanthropists. His Sleepy Hollow estate, Kykuit, with its extensive art collection and spacious gardens, was built in 1906-1913 and became home to three more generations of Rockefellers beyond him.

Kykuit is operated and maintained by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund while Historic Hudson Valley operates the public visitation program. Visitors can choose from three guided tours: Classic, which includes the main floor of the house, art galleries, Inner Garden, golf room and Coach Barn; Grand, which spends extra time in the gardens and art galleries, and visits the second floor of the home; and Selected Highlights, including the main floor of the house, Inner Garden, and West Terrace.


Photo Credit: Tom Nycz and Jaime Martorano

About ArtsWestchester

For more than 50 years, ArtsWestchester has been the community’s connection to the arts. Founded in 1965, it is the largest private not-for-profit arts council in New York State. Its mission is to create an equitable, inclusive, vibrant and sustainable Westchester County in which the arts are integral to and integrated into every facet of life. ArtsWestchester provides programs and services that enrich the lives of everyone in Westchester County. ArtsWestchester helps fund concerts, exhibitions and plays through grants; brings artists into schools and community centers; advocates for the arts; and builds audiences through diverse marketing initiatives. In 1998, ArtsWestchester purchased the nine-story neo-classical bank building at 31 Mamaroneck Avenue which has since been transformed into a multi-use resource for artists, cultural organizations and the community. A two-story gallery is located on the first floor of ArtsWestchester’s historic building on Mamaroneck Avenue. artsw.org

Similar Posts