The Galvan Initiatives Foundation issued a press release earlier today, which appears on the foundation's blog, announcing plans to move two historic Hudson houses to new locations. The first is 900 Columbia Street, which Galvan proposes to move to three contiguous vacant lots in the 200 block of Union Street.
The second is the Robert Taylor House, now located on the continuation of South Second Street, at the head of Tanners Lane. Galvan is proposing to move this house to the side yard at 25 Union Street, which was clearcut last summer.
Moving 900 Columbia Street would be a good thing. The Mental Health Association of Columbia-Greene Counties, which owns the house, is determined to demolish it. All efforts to dissuade the decision makers in that organization have been unsuccessful. Granted a great part of the historic significance of the house is its location, but moving the house seems to be the only way to save it. The proposed new location would at least put the house in proximity to other houses of the same era--211 and 243 Union Street.
Moving the Robert Taylor House, on the other hand, makes no sense at all. This house is generally recognized to be the oldest surviving house in Hudson, predating the arrival of the Proprietors. Its location, at the head of Tanners Lane and along the shore of what was once South Bay, is an enormous part of its historic significance. In the press release, the Galvan Initiatives Foundation justifies moving the house in this way: "On its current site the house is somewhat lost, and looks out over warehouses, when originally it looked out over the South Bay towards Mt. Merino, the river and the Catskills beyond." Those warehouses now belong to the City of Hudson, or rather to the Hudson Development Corporation, and the plan, when they were acquired, was to demolish them. When that happens, the house will again look out "over the South Bay towards Mt. Merino, the river and the Catskills beyond." In messing with Hudson's architectural heritage, moving the Robert Taylor House is surely a bridge too far.