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

Nikko Inn Card front

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 the roads in Westchester. The lines indicating the Hudson River along the left cleverly become strings for Japanese lanterns at the bottom.

Nikko Inn Card center

We can thank C.K. Nazu, who was manager of the Nikko at the time, for this wonderful ode to Harmon:

Nikko Card Detail
Of Harmon on the Hudson
You surely must have heard,
But if you’ll give attention
I should like a word,

About the Nikko Tea House,
One the wooded Croton’s brink,
The situation picturesque;
The food is fine we think;

So get a horse or motor car,
And bring your friends along;
If you follow the road to Harmon,
You surely can’t go wrong.

Here are a few previous posts about the Nikko Tea House:

  • C.K. Nazu is listed as the manager in this 1908 ad (though the last name is spelled “Nezu”).
  • Another clever bit of promotion from 1917, when the Nikko was called the “Nikko Inn.”
  • One of our favorite Nikko stories by a New York journalist who stopped for some “skiyaki” in 1931.

To see all the posts about the Nikko click the “Nikko Inn” tag in the right hand column.

If you have any vintage photographs or ephemera of the Nikko or the early days of Harmon please send an email.


  1. Local postcard expert Susan Hack-Lane, who helped date the card, pointed out the names written on the front, Nellie L. Beach and Billy Beach. Beach was a Peekskill family name (Beach Shopping Center) which may explain why this card was never mailed. ↩︎

October 14, 1842 – “Thousands to celebrate the Croton Dam and fresh water for NYC”

A first-person account of the Croton Water Celebration from the diary of Julia Lawrence Hasbrouck. “It was a happy day for New.York, as now she stands a “queen city” with her beautifull Fountains, and pure transparent water, her delighted sons and daughters have reason to be proud of her now.”

061_Page 59Friday 14. tenth. October. 1842.

A beautifull day for the celebration of the Croton croton-water-sheet-music_detail3water Works.

Every one was in commotion to.day, the whole city were on the move; and thousands of country people came flocking to see the procession. The stores were closed, bells ringing, soldiers marching, societys forming, and every one putting on their best faces to witness the novel scene.
At eleven Garret, the children, Bridget and myself went up to Mrs Anelli’s. They received us very politely, giveing us their small bed-room to ourselves. We had a fine view of the parade and were not exposed to the air. The procession, equalled my expectations, and was a handsome affair; every thing was so bright and neat, the very houses shone like silver.
The fire companies were very conspicuous for taste in their decorations. It was supposed the number of persons in procession, were about 20.000.croton
The streets…

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Declaring Independence, July 2, 1776

Two hundred and thirty seven years ago today, on July 2, 1776, the Pennsylvania Evening Post published momentous news.

The July 2, 1776 issue of the Pennsylvania Evening Post contains the earliest known printed notice that independence had been declared. Four days later, it became the first newspaper to print the text of the Declaration of Independence.

The July 2, 1776 issue of the Pennsylvania Evening Post contains the earliest known printed notice that independence had been declared. Four days later, it became the first newspaper to print the text of the Declaration of Independence.

It wasn’t emblazzoned across the front page as it would be today, because in the 18th century newspapers were produced slowly—typeset letter-by-letter and printed one-by-one.

“Each side of each sheet of each copy had to be pressed by hand, a complex task that involved (among many other procedures) wetting the paper, ‘beating’ the type with ink-soaked balls, and repeatedly pulling the heavy crank that lowered the platen and made the impression. . . . even a rural weekly, with barely adequate circulation of only 500 or 600, required a day and most of a night of unremitting labor to produce.”1

One can only imagine what it was like for the printers to insert this same-day news where there was still room, on the last page, just before the advertisements:

“This day the CONTINENTAL CONGRESS declared the UNITED COLONIES FREE and INDEPENDENT STATES.”

The announcement of independence appeared on the last page, above an advertisement for the sale of two ships.

The announcement of independence appeared on the last page, above an advertisement for the sale of two ships.

Earlier that day, the Continental Congress had taken a decisive step by passing a resolution made by Virginia delegate Richard Henry Lee, “That these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States, that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved.”

John Trumbull's Declaration of Independence, depicting the presentation of the draft of the Declaration of Independence to Congress.

John Trumbull’s Declaration of Independence, depicting the presentation of the draft of the Declaration of Independence to Congress.

Two days later, on July 4, 1776, Congress formally approved the Declaration of Independence, setting out—as John Adams put it in a letter to his wife Abigail—”the Causes, which have impell’d Us to this mighty Revolution.”2

These images are courtesy of Seth Kaller Inc., a dealer in rare historic documents based in White Plains. See the website for more information on the history of the Declaration of Independence.

Coming next: Croton’s connection to the Declaration of Independence.


  1. Paisley, Jeffrey. The Tyranny of Printers, Newspaper Politics in the Early American Republic (University of Virginia Press, 2003)
  2. Letter from John Adams to Abigail Adams, 3 July 1776, at the Massachusetts Historical Society.