Did You Know?

Fascinating and Fun Facts about Rockland County!

During the American Revolution, Torne Mountain (now part of Harriman State Park) served as a lookout for British ship movements on the Hudson. There’s a legend that General George Washington lost his watch on the mountain, and it may still be heard ticking in a rock crevice near the summit.

Although The ’76 House in Tappan was never officially used as a jail, in 1780 Major John Andre, a British spy, was imprisoned there for espionage prior to his execution.

The hamlet of Doodletown was abandoned in the early 1960s, but you can still hike among the remains of this “ghost town,” to see crumbling stonewalls, steps to nonexistent homes, and two graveyards. 

The indoor ropes course in the Palisades Center Mall is one of the world’s tallest, standing 85 feet tall. The five-story aerial adventure includes 75 obstacles.

The Village of Haverstraw is famous for “brick-making” dating back to its early settlement on the Hudson River in the 1600s. It was nicknamed as the “Brick-Making Capital of the World.” Many of the brownstones and brick structures constructed in New York City in the early 1900s were built with bricks made in Haverstraw.

African Americans were one of the first groups to arrive in Haverstraw back in the 1600’s. They came to Haverstraw against their will as slaves. The first U.S Census taken in 1790 reported that 238 slaves lived in Haverstraw. Many African Americans moved here in the early 1900’s to work in the brickyards.

In 1846, a group of African Americans took all their wealth to found a church. The First Free Colored Wesleyan Methodist church. In 1906, it moved to its present location on West Street, Haverstraw.

Paintings by acclaimed Nyack-born artist Edward Hopper have been displayed in the Whitney Museum of American Art and the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Art Institute in Chicago, Museum Ludwig in Cologne, Germany, the Tate Modern in London, the Grand Palais in Paris – and the White House.

One nickname for the small town of Snedens Landing is “Hollywood on the Hudson.” Famous residents have included Vivien Leigh, Laurence Olivier, John Steinbeck, Uma Thurman, and Orson Welles.

Pearl River has been called “the most Irish place in New York State,” mainly due to the fact that 52.4 percent of its 15,840 residents have Irish heritage. The annual Rockland County St. Patrick’s Day parade draws approximately 100,000 spectators to the route through Pearl River. It’s the second largest parade following New York City’s for the holiday.

The Bear Mountain Bridge was the first vehicular river crossing between New York City and Albany. When it opened in 1924, it was also the longest suspension bridge in the world, and the first suspended bridge to have a concrete deck.