Last month, we asked readers to identify the Dutchman (or, at least, his statue) that towers over a popular Ulster County park. Naturally, we’re referring to the monument of New Amsterdam’s last governor, Peter Stuyvesant. This majestic memorial stands on the very spot where he famously negotiated a peace treaty with the Esopus Indians in 1660. The park — Academy Green in Kingston — also features the bronze likenesses of New York Governor George Clinton and explorer Henry Hudson. Congrats to Shannon Bird of Fishkill, who quickly named Stuyvesant and his location for our prize. Hop across county lines to locate another bronze figure — this time, the Valley’s version of the Concord Minuteman — here.
The statue is of my ancestor, Peter Stuyvesant. I grew up on Danskammer Farm in the Town of Newburgh. The farm claims to have received its name when Henry Hudson sailed up the river, saw Native Americans dancing on a rock and called it “the devil’s dance chamber.” Danskammer is presumably the Dutch version of dance chamber. We sold the farm to Central Hudson, and its Danskammer generating plant is approximately on the site of Hudson’s “dance chamber.”
Peter Stuyvesant Brooks
I used to live a block away from the green and would pass it frequently while walking around uptown Kingston. Recently, I took an outdoor exercise class through the YMCA and we did the class right under the gaze of Mr. Stuyvesant.
I have this same picture hanging in my third-grade classroom. I always encourage my students to visit the statue when I teach our unit on local history in New York State.
The royal visit of June 1939 by King George VI and Queen Elizabeth (“The Picnic That Won the War,” December) included a convocation in their honor at [Columbia University’s] Low Memorial Library on Saturday, June 10 of that year. My parents were present that day. The building that succeeded the King’s College — which was founded by King George II in 1754 — is across the way from Low Memorial Library.