A well run, spirited, organization run by an innovative director and advised by a seasoned board of long time volunterrs. Kudos.
We've lived around the corner from the CCHS's Vanderpoel House for twelve years or so. It was always a very nice old federal building worth visiting, but the it certainly seemed to be more like a house simply frozen in time without any great interpretive experience.
We went back for the first time in years as part of Kinderhook's annual Candlelight Night. We were blown away. The rooms have been brightened up with interpretive information that breathed some life into the place. Really nice work, and a great place to stop by.
Review from Guidestar
I have enjoyed seeing a number of the historical properties and exhibits of the CCHS in visits to Columbia County over the last several years. The quality of the preservation and information about the CCHS houses and buildings and of the exhibits made me much more aware of the importance of the County in the history of the state and the nation. Moreover, it was a lot of fun.
The Columbia County Historical Society preserves and protects the amazing, rich history of Columbia County in the Hudson Valley.Co-operasting with a network of small village and city historical societies across the county, it provides a unique resource for genealogists, residents, and visitors through its four properties and an increasingly vigorous and imaginative programs of exhibitions, lectures, and special events. I have found that the Society offers so much to learn about the beautiful region where I live. It is a privilege to work with the Society as a volunteer. Alexandra Anderson
CCHS has a collection of significant historic properties, including what has to be one of the most extraordinary early colonial structures on the east coast, the Luykas Van Alen House. This well preserved and interpreted 300+ year old brick house is original in structure and detail, with representative 16th century furnishings appropriate to the prosperous Dutch family who lived there. We have seen nothing like it in the United States. The Society maintains a Museum building with a permanent art and artifact collection and significant local genealogical resources. The Museum also periodically hosts well designed shows that focus on significant local themes. The Society also is in the process of restoring the James Vanderpoel house, an early Federal manse with a beautiful floating staircase. Columbia County, which was the scene of a historic libel trial where Arron Burr opposed Alexander Hamilton, and Kinderhook, birthplace and home of the 8th President of the United States, are documented in detail in the art and documents that are in the collection of the Society. The CCHS buildings and collections are a mandatory stop for any serious student of early American history. We have returned several times to CCHS on trips to upstate New York, and made new finds with every visit.
I have known this organization for more than 20 years: as a member; by attending programs, lectures and exhibits; and as a volunteer. The staff and management have changed over the years but the professionalism and dedication have remained consistently strong. These are good people helping to maintain awareness of the fascinating heritage of this area. Their effort deserves support.