Catskill Mountain House Collection
Vedder Research Library
90 County Highway 42
Coxsackie, NY 12051
2 Cu. Ft. (Two Boxes and 13 Bound Volumes)
The Catskill Mountain House was a timber-framed hotel that once stood on a scenic overlook called Pine Orchard atop South Mountain in Haines Falls, NY. The hotel attracted a diverse array of visitors with advertisements describing beautiful vistas, fresh mountain air, and modern amenities for which the facility came to be nationally renowned. Presidents, captains of industry, preeminent thinkers and authors of the 19th century all made visits to the Catskill Mountain House as part of their summer social schedules during the hotel’s heyday. Originally opened in 1823 by a group of entrepreneurs from Catskill, NY, the property was leased to Charles Beach and finally purchased outright by him in 1836. The hotel passed through several owners after the close of World War One, finally being abandoned after the 1941 season. In 1962 the land upon which the Catskill Mountain House stood was purchased by the Department of Environmental Conservation for transformation into what is today the North-South Lake Recreation Area and Campgrounds. As part of this initiative, DEC burned the remains of the Mountain House in January 1963 and erased nearly all traces of its existence from the overlook it had occupied for over a century. Visitors today can hike to the clearing where the building once stood to read about the hotel’s history on signage while taking in the famous view.
Summary of Contents
The collection comprises one box of material spanning the history of the Mountain House from its earliest days as operated by the Catskill Mountain House Company to its final seasons as Andron’s Mountain House in the 1930s. There are clippings and historical gleanings about the Mountain House published both during the hotel’s existence and post-1963. Two folders contain correspondence regarding attempts at preservation and its eventual destruction. There are several folders of ephemera including menus and advertisements from the 1880s through the 1930s along with guide maps, hotel stationery, and souvenir programs from hotel events. Photographs appear throughout the folders as they pertain to given subjects. There are two folders on Charles and George Beach which contain legal and business documents related to their estates and the operations of the hotel. Additionally, 13 bound Hotel Registers still exist covering the years 1853 - 1873, 1905 - 1908, and 1913 - 1915. Several are alphabetized indexes of guests with addresses, room numbers, arrival and departure dates, and in some instances even requested supplies for their rooms.
Material is sorted into 18 folders by subject, oversized ledgers are shelved separately.
Item likely accessioned by purchase c. 1970, supporting documentation within collection.
Collection originally processed by Raymond Beecher, finding aid published Fall 2016 by Jonathan Palmer.
Materials are available to examine on-site at the Vedder Research Library in Coxsackie, New York during posted hours as found on the repository’s website.
Researcher assumes full responsibility for conforming to current copyright laws. Duplication of print and photographic materials without express permission of library staff is strictly prohibited.
Identification of Item, Folder, Box, Collection Name, Date Range. Vedder Research Library, Greene County Historical Society, Coxsackie NY.
Contents of Collection
Itemized list of collection provided on request when available by calling or emailing the Vedder Research Library during posted hours.
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