The Register-Star announced this morning that it will be moving its offices. Its building at Fourth and Warren streets is being purchased by the "GalVan Initiatives Foundation": "Register-Star office will relocate." There is no indication of where the Register-Star intends to go, but publisher Roger Coleman says that the paper "will continue to maintain a strong local presence."
Another of Hudson's most historic buildings will soon be owned by a group that has been criticized for its lack of sensitivity to authentic architectural fabric and historic design.
The site of the Register-Star building, at Fourth and Warren streets, was the location of Hudson's first jail, constructed in 1785. In The History of Columbia County (1878), Captain Franklin Ellis has this to say about that first prison building: "It was a rude log structure, and, although a show was made of grates and bars at the windows and door, it is said to have been so insecure a place of confinement that one of its first prisoners, having by some means obtained an auger, found little difficulty in boring his way through its walls to freedom."
The current building was constructed in 1805 and used as the jail until 1835. In that year, it was purchased by John J. Davis, "who fitted up within it a hall intended for public uses." The Common Council held its meetings there until the new City Hall, now the Hudson Opera House, was completed in 1855. Since 1862, the building has been a newspaper office. First the Gazette, the newspaper started by Charles R. Webster and Ashbel Stoddard in 1785, then the Daily Register, and most recently the Register-Star have had their offices in the building.
According to Tom Swope, executive director of the Galvan Foundation, there are several ideas for what might be done with the building "but he could not announce them yet."