If You Follow the Road to Harmon, You Surely Can’t go Wrong

Here’s a real treat—a double-fold promotional postcard for the Nikko Tea House, probably printed circa 1907 to 1910.1 An artist with the initials “W.K.” created the beautiful images and hand-lettered the map and poem on the centerfold. The map has a wonderful depiction of the Nikko and helpfully provides the location of “police traps” on … Continue reading If You Follow the Road to Harmon, You Surely Can’t go Wrong

The Mystery of the Devil’s Footprints

Where are the Devil’s Footprints? This simple question was recently posed to a group of Crotonites—experts in local history, in Hudson Valley geology, and some people who grew up here and explored all of Croton’s old ruins and haunted places in their youth. They all had the same reply: “What footprints?” The answer takes us … Continue reading The Mystery of the Devil’s Footprints

The Ultimate Bird’s Eye View of Manhattan

Here’s the perfect follow-up to our recent post on bird’s eye view maps of the Croton Aqueduct—an interactive mashup of an 1836 map of Manhattan, georeferenced with satellite images of the city today.1 Using a “spyglass” map viewer you can switch back and forth between the two maps and explore 177 years of growth and … Continue reading The Ultimate Bird’s Eye View of Manhattan

U.S. Geographical Survey Map, 1943

These images are taken from a topographic map of the "Haverstraw Quadrangle," which was surveyed in 1938 by the U.S. Department of the Interior Geological Survey and published in 19431. This map provides so many layers of information—buildings, roads, elevations, vegetation, bodies of water, place names, and more—that we can get a good sense of … Continue reading U.S. Geographical Survey Map, 1943

Census Map of Croton, 1935

These details are from a map of the Town of Cortlandt which accompanied the 1940 census. According to a note on the map it was prepared in January, 1935 "in the office of the County Engineer, with workers supplied by the Westchester County Emergency Work Bureau." The map can be viewed and downloaded from the … Continue reading Census Map of Croton, 1935

Croton Aqueduct Watershed, 1908

This map and graph were published in the May 23, 1908 issue of Scientific American. They show the locations of the different reservoirs within the Croton watershed after the New Croton Dam was completed and their relative elevations. Click the image to enlarge it.

Esso “Happy Motoring” map, 1950

This map is interesting because of what it does and does not show. If your car were to break down in 1950 you wouldn't know from looking at this map that there was a railroad (the arch-enemy of gas companies) running along the shore of the Hudson River. But if you looked carefully at the … Continue reading Esso “Happy Motoring” map, 1950

Westchester Parks & Parkways, 1924

This map is from the 1924 Report of the Westchester County Park Commission, published during a period in which the Westchester park and parkway system was being greatly expanded. Thanks to the Oechsner Archive for this vintage map.

Croton Area in 1908

Details of the Croton area in 1908 from the Atlas of the rural country district north of New York City embracing the entire Westchester County, New York . . . Compiled from maps on file and surveyors notes and data, maps from actual surveys furnished by individual owners & final field observations by our own … Continue reading Croton Area in 1908

New York Walk Book, 1923

This map is from the "pocket edition" of the New York Walk Book, published in 1923 by the American Geographical Society. The Croton area walks include: Salt Hill Route—Croton to Croton Lake Station Croton Lake Region—Harmon to Millwood Montrose to Harmon via Spitzenberg and Keg Mountains In addition to the maps the book has detailed … Continue reading New York Walk Book, 1923