Friday, April 26, 2019

Nine Not to Ignore: No. 2

Yesterday, in imitation of Seven to Save, the New York State Preservation League's biennial list of endangered historic sites, Gossips embarked on its own list of at-risk historic properties in Hudson, called Nine Not to Ignore.  

2 The Charles Alger House

The Gothic Revival brick house at 59 Allen Street was built in 1851 for Charles Coffey Alger, who was the designer of the Hudson Iron Works and a partner in that enterprise. "Embellished with wood bargeboards, finials, and eared drip moldings," the house appears in this engraving from an 1858 map of Columbia County.

Alger was the patron of Hudson River School painter Sanford Robinson Gifford, who was the son of Alger's partner in the iron works, Elihu Gifford. Alger also was a patron of the architect Alexander Jackson Davis, who did work at Alger's residences in Newburgh and New York City. It has been reported that the interior of the house on Allen Street may still retain some details that suggest the design influence of Davis. 

The following photographs from the mid-20th century show the house with its bargeboards and eared drip moldings still intact, although the finials appear already to be missing.

The house was occupied by its owner until around 2015. In 2016, it was acquired by Hudson Collective Realty LLC, a Galvan entity, and has since stood vacant. In 2018, a plan for its restoration was one of five Galvan projects submitted for DRI (Downtown Revitalization Initiative) funding. The restored house was to become a bed & breakfast. It appears at the top of the hill on the left in this rendering presented at a DRI open house in February 2018. Like the Robert Taylor House, the Charles Alger House received no DRI funding.

Last December, a roofing project was begun on the house, without a certificate of appropriateness from the Historic Preservation Commission.

Code enforcement officer Craig Haigh issued a stop word order, indicating that the work on the roof was being done without a permit.

The work stopped, but today, five months later, no certificate of appropriateness has been sought, and the work on the roof has not resumed.


  1. Why would they get a CofA when the Preservation Commission doesn't enforce the law anyway?

  2. Galvan has always had carte blanche with his projects because NO ONE will stand up to him. And Peter Meyer is exactly right. Our Preservation Commission has no teeth. If we want things done right, then we have to have the power to make them be done right, most particularly when it comes to Galvan.