Dutch Heritage Preserved at the Pruyn House

Monday, May 12, 2014
 If you're been following my blog for any length of time, you know that I've been largely focusing on places close to my hometown.  My point being that we often travel far from home seeking adventure, but in the past year I've been lucky enough to find that so many amazing places are right here in the Capital District.  Today's post is about one of them - the Pruyn House - which I actually visited for the  first time over the holidays.    This is an area rich in history with no shortage of historical markers.  The Pruyn House is one of them.  Chances are.......many of you have been enjoying this place for years (I'm a late bloomer). Yesterday we stopped by with my mom and although they were technically closed, we spent a few moments strolling around the grounds. For those of you who, like me,  have never been,  I hope this post encourages you to do so.

Normally I prefer writing my own narration of the subject of my posts, but so many of the websites I researched were so full of details, dates and history that I could barely comprise them into one concise description.  That is until I landed on this one from the Town of Colonie website.  Rather than  compiling my own, I'm giving you their version which is concise and complete:

"This beautifully restored home situated on 5 ½ acres is a connection to the Dutch heritage of this area. Built by Casparus Pruyn about 1830 as a country home for his wife, Ann, and their eight children, it is a blend of Federal and Greek Revival architecture. Along with his job as land and business agent for Stephen Van Rensselaer III, the last patroon, Mr. Pruyn used a portion of his over 170 acres for farming.  Over the years, the property had many owners, the longest being members of the Henkes family. John and Carrie Henkes purchased the property in 1893. In 1983, the Town of Colonie purchased the home, began extensive repairs and opened it to the public in 1985 as a historic and cultural center. The Buhrmaster Barn was originally located along the Mohawk River where it was rebuilt in the late 1800's following a fire. Displaced from its original spot in 1911 when the Erie Barge Canal was built, it was moved to Troy-Schenectady Road. When condemned at that location in 1987 by the Federal Aviation Administration, it was moved to its present home at the Pruyn House.   The Verdoy Schoolhouse was built in 1910 and is a good example of the early one-room schools built in the Town of Colonie until the 1950's. In 1995 the North Colonie School district donated the schoolhouse to the Town of Colonie and it was moved to the Pruyn House where it has been restored as a living memorial to the Town's Centennial. (Taken from the Town of Colonie website)

Currently there are ten buildings on the property including the smokehouse, potting house, woodshed, public restrooms, carriage house and a well house.  What I love is the beautiful perennial gardens, and herb garden - all maintained by the Fort Orange Garden Club.  The Pruyn is host to summer concerts, educational opportunities, historical exhibits and a greens show during the holidays.  Another treasure right in our backyard.  Not convinced yet???  Here's more reasons to visit soon.............

 If you visit during the holidays..........you'll enjoy seeing every room of the Pruyn decorated for Christmas.

The Pruyn House is open Monday-Friday, 9:00-4:30.  Admission is Free.  The Pruyn House is located on Old Niskayuna Road in Latham.   See links below for more information and directions.

Thank you for allowing me to share by photos and thoughts with you!  And Have a Great Day!!!

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