A Bicentennial Quit
by Joan Becker
Warwick's Bicentenial quilt shows many of the historical sites and buildings which are scattered all over the 107 square miles of the Town of Warwick. The first picture is of the Old School Baptist Meeting House in the Village of Warwick. Mabel Pellerin, one of 18 women responsible for all the quilting, once lived on High Street and can remember seein people being baptised from the Church even in the cold of winter by immersion in the Wawayanda Creek in back of the church. Mrs. Pellerin also told of the Hasbrouck House, another of the quitl's squares. She remembered Miss Hylah Hasbrouck who was her first teacher, after her family moved to Warwick, in the school on High Street which burned down in 1941. Miss Hasbrouck was a Stanley in later years. . Miss Hasbrouck is now 97 and last November went to the Andover Nursing Home to recuperate from a brocken shoulder.
Stanley Pellerin nows works for the Lehigh and Hudson Railroad, another picture in the quilt, which was started in 1862. He is the oldest employee of the line. He will have been a brakemen for 30 years and this January, Mabel Pellerin can recall many pleasant excursions on # 12, the engine seen in the L & H square, called the "milk train" to go shopping, after it connected with the Erie Railroad at Greycourt. Another scene in the quilt, the old Warwick Hospital on Forrester Avenue founded in 1916 largely by the efforts of Dr. Morris Renfrew Bradner, also ties in with Pellerin history since Stanley was born there.
One scene shows the Amity School. next to the Presbyterian Church, which has been reborn for the people of the area and is a going school again after 100 years. Next to that is a picture of the Black Dirt in Pine Islalnd, the marvelously fertile land which has made Warwick such a large farming community. Other squares show the orchards and cornfields ot the first settleres, dairy farming, and farming in Bellville.
Fun is not left out for pictured are Winter recreation, the Appalachian Trail and summer fun at Greenwood Lake. Greenwood Lake is also noted for the first Air Mail delivery which was made by a rocket across the Lake, and the artist Jasper Craprey who painted scenes of the Lake at the time of the Civil War. Churches are represented by the Forrida Presbyterian Church and the Old Methodist Church in Warwick built in 1867. The Stone Bridge at Wisner over the Wawandy Creek, Day's Mill in New Milford, are seen along with a representation of Frank Forrester, naturalist and author whi visited Warwick in 1835 and after wrote the book, " Warwick Woodlands."
The Wawayanda Patent in 1702-3 is pictured on the top now recalling the tract of land called Wawayanda, most of which is now Warwick, which was purchased from the Delaware Indians by a group of N.Y. land speculators, the John Bridges Co. The patent to the tract was granted by Queen Ann in 1703 the Company.
Sterling Iron Mine, which forged the chain that stopped British ships in 1778 from going up the Hudson River at West Point. The Iron Works were also responsible for making in 1773 the first anchor procuded in this country, and many bullets used during the Revolutionary War. Iron was an important industry in this area but so was agriculture for which Day's Mill in New Milford and the Mill beyond the Stone Bridge in Wisner were necessities.
Florida is again represented by William H. Seward's "folly," the purchase of Aaska, by then Secretary of State and a square showing the Highland Engine Co. # 2. The last square to be completed meant a great deal to the quilters since it was passed from person to person until all 18 women had done some work on it. All their signatures can be seen at the bottom of the quilt surrounding the Bicentennial Symbol. The Official Seal of the Town of Warwick is the center or the quilt.
History is represented by the Staat's house, the oldest in the Town and in Orange County which was built in 1700. The kitchen of the Shingle House, the oldest in the Village of Warwick, is pictured as is the 1810 House and Hathron House built in 1773.
No story about the Revolutionary War can be complet without a place where "George Washington slept." Well, he didn't sleep in Warwick but he stopped two different times at Baird's Tavern for a glasss of grog with his aide, Col. Rouchebault of the French Army. However, according to Genevieve Van Duzer of the Historical Society, Martha Washington stopped here on her way to Mt. Vernon from the army's headquarters in Newburg. Mrs. Washington was seen by a boy named Christe as noted by William B. Sayer in a ledger of his written in 1881-82. He had come to town to have a plowshare worked on and heard that Lady Washington had spent the night in the Tavern. For some reason he hid in the bushes by the creek where the Chester Bank is today, and saw Mrs. Washinton in her coach with postillions in red uniforms. Mr. Sayer was from the Sayer family which lived in the old stone Sayreville House on Route 17A (now an antique shop).
Another old house. The House was built by Daniel Burt back in 1740 at a time when his brother Benjamin settled on what is called the Welling Farm. The Burts were called back to Connecticut by his family soon after because it was too wild in Warwick and he did not return until 1760. He then tried to buy his home back from Welling but could not so he bought and settled in Bellvale.
Daniel then bought about 190 acres and built a house there (now McFarlalnds home on Route 17A). He also built the Shingle House on Foreste Avenue for his son and bride.
This beautiful quilt, now on display in the Warwick Library, does much to whet the appetite for more of the history of this Bicentennial Town.
This is a transcription of an article published in the Warwick Valley Dispatch, dated January 21, 1975. Misdated, should be 1976. The quilt is on display at the Town Hall. Transcription of article used with permission.
Many of the transcriptions found here are now in published form. They have been published by the Orange County Genealogical Society (in Goshen, New York). Volume 3 includes my Volume 3 and Volume 5. Volume 4 includes my four parts of New Milford history. There is a planned Volume 5, which will include my Volumes 6, 7, and 8, Part 1, which is about 250 transcriptions. They can be purchase through the Genealogical Society. Just Google them and print out the order form. Or they can be purchased from the Warwick Historical Society. They are also on sale at the gift shop at Baird's Tavern. I would like to thank the Genealogical Society and Dan Burrows for their efforts. Started a new blog for images of Warwick. Go to: www.imagesofwarwicknewyork.blogspot.com.