Saturday, May 14, 2016

What's New at Historic Huguenot Street

Posted By on Sat, May 14, 2016 at 4:00 AM

click to enlarge The recreated slaves' quarters - DIANA WALDRON
  • Diana Waldron
  • The recreated slaves' quarters

In the 16th century, the Protestant Reformation spread across Europe. Inspired, John Calvin shared new ideas of worship that centered on reading the Bible and developing a personal relationship with God. His followers in France, primarily middle-class artisans, came to be known as the Huguenots. Escaping religious persecution from the Catholic Church, the Huguenots fled to die Pfalz in southwestern Germany. (The word refugee, dating back to 1671, refers specifically to the Huguenots.) After moving to America, they purchased 30,000 acres of land from the Esopus Indians in 1678.

Tours at Historic Huguenot Street are seeing some new improvements. Bill Weldon is an interpretive specialist and the consultant at Historic Huguenot Street. Based in Virginia, he was formerly the Director of Historic Area Programming at Colonial Williamsburg. By the end of February, he had drafted a script for the new interpretation of the tour. He commented how it was important to go back through the historic material and document different elements so that the tour is not based on speculative or conventional wisdom.

Originally, visitors would only see one or two sites in a tour. Visitors will now be guided through all four historic locations in one tour. The new extended tour intends to travel through time, showing the progression and development of the Huguenots as French refugees gaining an American identity. There will also be an emphasis on the new, expanded slave story.

click to enlarge The recreated woodstove in the slaves' quarters - DIANA WALDRON
  • Diana Waldron
  • The recreated woodstove in the slaves' quarters

Another new addition to the tours: iPads. Historic Huguenot Street tour guides will carry iPads with them to show historic documents when appropriate, such as land deeds or newspaper articles. The iPad serves as an instant time machine for the curious history lovers to glance back in time. Papers are not easily accessible can now be viewed. One document, the 1677 Indian Deed, details the land agreement made with local Indians. It shows the signatures from all 12 patentees from seven families, as well as a list of items the Huguenots and the Indians traded: wampum, gunpowder, shirts, blankets, and more. The marks made by the Indians are also visible in the document.

Many items, including paintings and new furniture sets, tables, and bed frames, were taken out of storage and brought into new locations.

New bed frame taken out of storage - DIANA WALDRON
  • Diana Waldron
  • New bed frame taken out of storage

click to enlarge New furniture set with table and chairs - DIANA WALDRON
  • Diana Waldron
  • New furniture set with table and chairs

The store, located in the Jean Hasbrouck house, will now have a collection of colorful polyurethaned food (and other fake food) on display, to give visitors a sense of what life was like living in that time period in the house.

click to enlarge New polyurethaned food at the store - DIANA WALDRON
  • Diana Waldron
  • New polyurethaned food at the store

click to enlarge Another view of the store - DIANA WALDRON
  • Diana Waldron
  • Another view of the store

In the Deyo-Broadhead home, a 1910 Melodian Parlor piano will be played on the tour. Donated by Friends of Historic Kingston, the piano will play songs from a collection of more than 200 piano rolls. The Deyo-Broadhead family was very socially active. With the aid of an iPad, documents from the New Paltz Times can be seen in an instant. One particular 1895 document noted the first formal event held at the Deyo-Broadhead house: The “5 o' Clock Tea” where over 100 people attended and Moscow's Orchestra at Newburgh played.

The tour intends to show the evolution of the community from a European frontier settlement to an American town, starting with the oldest site and ending in the 1940s kitchen. Weldon envisions new projects for the future: He hopes to be able to recreate barns and sheds that would have existed during the lives of the Huguenots.


The church lacks ornate decoration. Reformers were protesting stained glass, statues, and anything that interfered with their relationship with God. - DIANA WALDRON
  • Diana Waldron
  • The church lacks ornate decoration. Reformers were protesting stained glass, statues, and anything that interfered with their relationship with God.

click to enlarge Kitchen table in the Jean Hasbrouck house - DIANA WALDRON
  • Diana Waldron
  • Kitchen table in the Jean Hasbrouck house

click to enlarge Jambless fireplace in the Jean Hasbrouck house - DIANA WALDRON
  • Diana Waldron
  • Jambless fireplace in the Jean Hasbrouck house
  • Pin It
  • StumbleUpon
  • Email
  • Favorite

Tags: , ,

Speaking of Historic Huguenot Street, Espous Indians

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Readers also liked…

Hudson Valley Events

submit event

Latest in Daily Dose

  • Stephen Clair and the Pushbacks Play Marlboro
  • Stephen Clair and the Pushbacks Play Marlboro

    The Beacon Music Factory founder and group fly into the Falcon Underground this Thursday.
    • Mar 28, 2017
  • Kite Flying with the WLC
  • Kite Flying with the WLC

    Where Zena Road meets Route 212 just outside the town of Woodstock, there’s a magnificent 22-acre open field with a sweeping view of Overlook Mountain. And on Saturday, April 1st, it’s the ideal spot to bring the kids and fly a kite.
    • Mar 27, 2017
  • Tickets on sale for Spiegeltent 2017
  • Tickets on sale for Spiegeltent 2017

    Once again being hosted by Tony-nominated Mx. Justin Vivian Bond, a season of cabaret and late night performances returns to the Bard's Summerscape.
    • Mar 24, 2017
  • More »

More by Diana Waldron

Current Issue

March 1-31, 2017
Issue Cover