Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Wandering Around Hyde Park

I am going to take you on a little visit to my old teenage stomping grounds. Hyde Park and St. James' Church. 
No, silly....not that Hyde Park!
Wrong again! Although very lovely, this is the wrong Hyde Park and St. James' Church.
Here we go...this is the St. James Church I remember so well. This pretty little Episcopalian church is located in the tiny hamlet of Hyde Park, New York. Hyde Park was named in honor of Edward Hyde, Lord Cornbury, the Governor of the Colony of New York. The church building was consecrated on October 11,1811. See....don't you feel smarter now? Next time you are at a party and someone says " about that St. James Church?" you can jump right in that conversation!
I wanted to take you inside, however the door was posted with this very sad commentary of modern times. Such a shame.
Since I can't take you inside, let's have a walk around their fabulous cemetery.

I was fascinated by the grave stones that were barely poking up from the ground. Like they were rising from the dead. You could tell which families were the wealthy by the size of the markers. I guess even in death, some still feel the need to act a little pompous.
Rev. Samuel Roosevelt Johnson build a children's school on his adjoining property in 1832 and upon his death, bequeathed it to the church. Oh yeah....he gets a big head stone.

Ruth Bayliss, wife of Maturin Livingston is buried in what looks to me like a big bathtub. She must have been a big believer in the motto 'Cleanliness is next to Godliness'. I like the marker to the left with the big stone ball and cross. At the top of the cross are the words Cruce Salus..meaning Salvation by or from the cross. A Catherine Sherwood is buried there.
I really loved the simple, quiet feel of this old cemetery and being there all alone added to the solitude.It was early spring and the contrast of the green grass and pines with the mottled, dull stone was so great.
I know I have taken you here before, but I cannot leave Hyde Park without driving by the beautiful Vanderbilt Mansion. It is actually right across the street from the church. Come on..let's take another look around.
Look close....see the little red fire hydrant to the left of the stairs. That cracks me up..but I guess they have to worry about fires too. 
Just look at the view these people had! The lovely Hudson River and Catskill mountains.
The first birthday gift my husband ever gave me when we started dating was given here at this site on the Vanderbilt property. Good memories.
Vanderbilt Mansion also has some of the most wonderful pine trees on their grounds. Look how beautiful the huge branches look resting on the grass..I want one in my front yard!!!
I need to do some investigation to find out why these grow like this. I know they are very old. I hope I am this awesome when I get old :-)
This twisted, gnarly tree is one of many along the driveway. I wonder how many creatures have called it home?
Well that's it for now. I hope you have enjoyed our quick little jaunt around Hyde Park. I really am very lucky to call it home and it holds many wonderful memories. How about me where you grew up!
Until next kind and stay creative.


Julie said...

Oh, so gorgeous, Janet! Love all those beautiful, woodsy photos...such a beautiful part of the country...I miss the east coast!

I love walking through old cemeteries...I do alot of genealogy, so I've spent lots of time doing just that! Love your thoughts on the bigger tombstones!

And the Vanderbilt! Stunning home and grounds!

Hope you're having a beautiful day!

SewSweetStitches said...

Those trees are so cool! Thanks for sharing!

T @ Poppy Place said...

You got me all excited I thought you were going to take me back to England but what a nice surprised, I have never been to the East coast and this is so pretty and so like England in a way, thanks for sharing :) T.

Biba said...

Absolutely gorgeous scenery! I'd loooove to join you for a walk!

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

This was so lovely. Thank you!
I am crazy about those trees in particular!

Atelier Conti said...

Thanks for the wonderful walk. Such beautiful spots. I've never been there before today!

Haddock said...

The cemetery looks great.

Anonymous said...

I certainly enjoyed the pictures. Those trees are very interesting, I have never seen any like them before. The cemetery pictures were very interesting too. I love walking cemeteries and taking pictures for my sister for our family genealogy site that she has built.I enjoyed the stroll in pictures with you thanks for sharing. Hugs

Annette said...

What a beautiful and fun post! In fact it was the perfect break I needed this afternoon!

PG said...

Thank you Janet! Such a shame that the church has to be closed, for such a paltry reason. Lovely grounds, I prefer the pine trees to the pompous graves though (what IS it about the rich??). I wonder if the low pine branches have anything to do with propogation?

Audrey said...

Beautiful photos! Definitely a place to check out once we are retired and can travel :)
LOVE the tree!!

Dar said...

My wonderful surroundings were and still are green forests, the clearest blue lakes, and the freshest clean air that hugs us. I guess our beautiful surroundings are only as beautiful as the memories we make around them. We were both blessed. So sad the sign on the church. Thanks so much for the tour.