Historic Hillsdale

Old Town HallHistoric Hillsdale is a Comprehensive Plan Committee that promotes the preservation of Hillsdale’s unique heritage. Its focus includes public buildings, homes, cemeteries, historic sites, trails, roads, landscapes and other features of the town in order to protect and preserve that which gives Hillsdale its character and enhances our quality of life and economic development.

Timi Bates
Julie Brandi
Geoff Brookman
Tom Carty
Eileen Cohen
Peter Cipkowski
Fran Eberhart
David Gallager
Jamie Johnson
Lex Lalli, chair
Jay Rohrlich
Janis Smythe
Amelia Sydlosky
Michael Stertz
Joan Wallstein
James Wagman
Matthew White

Town Historians
Chris Atkins and Lauren Letellier
email: email hidden; JavaScript is required

HillsdaleDesignation of Hillsdale Hamlet Historic District
Grants from the Preservation League of New York State and The Berkshire Taconic Foundation funded the project, led by Larson Fisher Associates, and included an extensive survey of the Hillsdale Hamlet.  This culminated in the designation of the Hillsdale Hamlet Historic District now listed on the State and National Registers. 82 properties are included in Hillsdale’s Hamlet Historic District.

The complete survey is available for viewing at the Roe Jan Community Library or Hillsdale Town Hall.  To read an abbreviated version of the Historic Hillsdale Survey of 44 properties, click here. See district map.

Historic Preservation Tax Benefits
The Historic Hillsdale Committee has published a brochure to promote the tax benefits of life in Hillsdale’s historic district. Owners of historic residential and/or income-producing buildings in the District may qualify for federal and/or state income tax credits for rehabilitating their property. A handful of property owners have already taken advantage of this valuable tax credit and can attest to its straightforward process. See programs.

A federal and state tax credit is available to owners of historic, commercial, office, industrial or rental residential buildings, and a state credit to owner occupied residential structures. Be sure to get the facts before starting any renovations. Download brochure interior [PDF] with details. Exterior [PDF] here.

Visit the Town Clerk’s area for more information and application forms for Tax Credits.

For information on the NYS and Federal Investment Tax Credit programs, including whether or not your property qualifies, contact:  Weston Davey at 518-268-2164 or email hidden; JavaScript is required.

NYS and National Register of Historic Places Document Imaging Project

Goals for current calendar year and into the future:

  • Plan house tours.
  • Determine if the 1799 Toll House on Route 23, the EAST GATE to the Columbia Turnpike, can be saved and adapted to a new use, whether in the current location or in a new and more accessible location. Work with Roe Jan Historical Society on this initiative.
  • Apply for funds from the Preservation League of NY State and other sources to continue the survey of historic houses of Hillsdale including the Hamlet and also the Village. Encourage private owners outside of the Hamlet to apply for designation on the National Register of Historic Places.
  • Continue to inform Hillsdale property owners of the benefits of historic preservation including tax credits for improvements to historic buildings.
  • Work with the Rail Trail and the Ironworks group in Copake to connect the two historic sites along the Rail Trail.
  • Plan for signs that indicate Historic nature of Hillsdale at the Rail Trail on Anthony Street to encourage visitors to Hillsdale.
  • Develop a historic walking tour of Hillsdale that can be downloaded and is available in printed form.
  • Determine if plaques might be placed on significant historic buildings in the Hamlet.
  • Consideration of other projects yet to be determined

Committee Notes

December 2016 Notes

September 2016 Notes

July 2016 Notes

May 2016 Notes

January 2016 Notes

December 2015 Notes

June 2015 Notes

April 2015 Notes

Older Notes

March 2012 Notes

April 2012 Notes

July 2013 Notes

November 2013 Notes

January 2014 Notes

March 2014 Notes

April 2014 Notes

Past Projects

Signs at 4 Entrances to Hillsdale Hamlet (E-W-N-S)
Commemorative signs, indicating the Hillsdale Hamlet as a National Historic Place were installed.  Matthew White, a Hillsdale resident, designed these signs.

Hillsdale Methodist Church Bell Restoration
Historic Hillsdale contributed funds to restore the bell at the Church at the intersection of Routes 22 and 23.  This building was highlighted as one of the most significant historic sites in Hillsdale.

Three Tours of Hillsdale Historic Properties

Since 2009, Historic Hillsdale has organized four tours of several historic properties.  These were made possible by the hard work of volunteers and the generosity of owners who allowed the public to tour their property.

Workshops and Public Meetings on the Tax Credit Programs
There were several public meetings and workshops to discuss the Survey and Application for historic status as they were being prepared, the benefits of designation, and the Tax Credit Programs available to structures in historic Districts.

Town Hall Exterior Renovation
The Town Hall is one of Hillsdale’s most architecturally distinctive historic buildings.  The restoration of the slate roof, mortar, brick parapets were completed in spring 2014. The columns and windows were completed in the fall 2014. The exterior was completed in 2015.

Support for Historic Hillsdale

Funds for projects completed and anticipated come primarily from private foundations, State and Federal agencies and contributions from the residents of Hillsdale.

Grants received or in the application stage:

  • National Trust for Historic Preservation
  • The J.M. Kaplan Fund
  • The Rheinstrom Hill Foundation
  • Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation
  • The Preservation League of New York State