Happy Birthday Putnam County! Celebrate Putnam County’s History June 14th

CARMEL, NEW YORK, May 14 — Putnam County Executive MaryEllen Odell and County Clerk Michael C. Bartolotti, invite the public to celebrate Putnam County’s 207th birthday on Flag Day, Friday, June 14, 2019, at the Historic Courthouse, 44 Gleneida Avenue, Carmel, NY, from  10 – 11:30 am.  In addition to local history awards, a special presentation honoring today’s local historians along with a centennial commemoration of the homecoming stories from World War I will be featured.

“100 years ago, New York Governor Alfred E. Smith established the role of local historians to help record the stories of returning servicemembers following World War I,” says MaryEllen Odell, “Since that time, our local government historians have been preserving, interpreting and presenting local history. We are thrilled to honor the role they have played, and continue to play, for the towns and villages throughout Putnam County.”

The current municipal historians include Jim Meyer of Carmel;  Jackie Rohrig of Kent;  Dr. Larry A. Maxwell of Patterson; Mark Forlow for Philipstown and the Village of Cold Spring; Dan Ricci of Putnam Valley;  John E. “Jack” Duncan of Southeast;  Danielle Cylich for the Village of Brewster; and Jonathan Bradley for Nelsonville.

A number of 2019 awards share a common theme: remembering Putnam County’s role in World War I.  “It’s quite fitting that we’ll celebrate the County’s birthday on Flag Day this year,” says Odell of the scheduling change from the County’s actual birthday June 12th to the 14th, “We will be commemorating a time in our County’s history that was at the peak of patriotism as the citizens of Putnam County welcomed home its brave men and women who served in the Great War.”

“Our Row of Honor along the shore of Lake Gleneida serves as a great reminder of what a privilege it is to celebrate Putnam County’s history, pledge our allegiance and show our continued gratitude for all those who serve.”

As with tradition, the Historian’s Office will honor individuals and organizations for their outstanding contributions to local history.  According to Michael Bartolotti, County Clerk and Records Management Officer responsible for the County Archives, “The Archives and Historian’s Office continue to be a great resource not just for research but for the arts as well.  Over the past year, elements from our records and collection have been developed into works of both nonfiction and fiction.”  Over seven different books and transcriptions will receive 2019 Local History awards.

2019 Local History Awards include:

  • Exemplary Public History in Schools:  Southeast Museum & Brewster High School for the stage production of “The Letters: Voices from the Great War”
  • Exemplary Public History – Lecture Series: Michael Bennett & Putnam Valley Historical Society
  • Preserving Local History: Mary Ann Smith for “Carmel Country Club”; Bernadette Brandon & the Brandon Family for “Sgt. Daniel Brandon’s Diary”
  • Local History PublicationPatriot Hero of the Hudson Valley by Vincent T. Dacquino; Sybil Rides by Larry Maxwell; The Girls of Haviland and Beyond Haviland by Deborah Rafferty Oswald; Putnam County Veterans of World War I by Roderick J. Cassidy;  The South Precinct of Dutchess County New York, 1740-1799 by Pamela Riccardi Paschke
  • Archival Sources Publication: Chip Rowe, transcription of “Putnam County, New York, Clerk Receipt Book, 1821-1827”, The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record, Volume 149, Number 2,  April 2018 and Number 3, July 2018
  • Lifetime Achievement Local History: Marjorie Nichols Keith, Cornell Cooperative Extension
  • Following the ceremony, attendees are invited to join the historians and honorees in the lobby of the David D. Bruen County Office Building for the traditional County birthday cake and refreshments.  The public is welcome, no RSVP required. For more information about the event, please contact the Historian’s Office at 845-808-1420 or historian@putnamcountyny.gov

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About The Historian’s Office

The Historian’s Office preserves, interprets, and promotes the history of Putnam County as a local government office.  According to New York State criteria, the work of the Historian’s Office includes: research and writing, teaching and public presentations, historic preservation, and organization, advocacy and tourism promotion. To support these efforts, the Putnam County Historian’s Office has been collecting historical records, maps, books, photographs, and periodicals since 1953.  In 1992, the Putnam County Archives was established in the Historian’s Office to preserve, arrange, describe, and make accessible the governmental records of Putnam County.  The Archives and Historian’s Collection are used as a resource for people in Putnam County and elsewhere.  Finding aids are available at www.putnamcountyny.com/countyhistorian.