Sunday, November 14, 2010

Hudson's Historic Parks

There is persistent talk about restoring Hudson's two historic parks--Promenade Hill and Seventh Street Park, once known as the Public Square. Back in 1878, there was an effort to improve both public spaces. Here's what Anna Bradbury had to say, thirty years later, about those improvements, in The History of the City of Hudson.

"The improvement of the Public Square," is alluded to. This as we have seen was intended for a public park by the donor, but for some inscrutable reason it was denuded of its fine old forest trees, and paved with cobblestones. To complete the devastation, the Hudson and Berkshire Railroad was allowed to cross it, and thus it remained until 1878, when the matter was taken up by a resident on the upper side of the Square. Subscriptions were solicited and a sufficient sum was raised, together with the gifts of the coping and trees from individuals, to transform the treeless desert into a refreshing little oasis. The Boston and Albany Railroad Company atoned in a measure for its presence, by generously furnishing sufficient gravel to fill in the whole surface of the Park.

In the same year, 1878, the authorities took measures to improve the Promenade Hill, by the erection of an ornamental iron fence along the full length of its dangerous frontage, and by increased attention to its walks and lawn.


  1. Carole, do we know anything about the white-columned structure on the left hand margin of this photo?

  2. Historically the jewels of any successful community was a "park" and or a "town clock."

    Hudson has both - both of which could welcome renewed interest and revitalization - civic pride is in order - again.

  3. Michael--I'm not entirely sure that this is what appears in the picture, but there was at one time a kind of concession stand on Promenade Hill. I believe it was called the "Round House." If I remember correctly, there was a balcony or second floor where people could sit and enjoy the view while having a snack. Based on what can be seen of the structure in the picture, this may be it.