Voorheesville, New York

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Voorheesville is a village within the town of New Scotland in Albany County, New York, United States. It is a suburb of Albany and part of the city's historic metropolitan area. The population was 2,705 at the 2000 census. The village is named after a railroad attorney, Alonzo B. Voorhees.

The village is situated by the north town line of New Scotland



The area was settled by farmers sent by the Rennselaer family. In the 19th Century, their descendants rebelled against the patroon system, fomenting a Rent War.

In 1864, two railroads were built through the town of New Scotland, headed west from the Hudson River, both trying to find a way around the Helderberg Mountains. The Albany and Susquehanna line and the New York, West Shore and Buffalo railroads crossed one another in a farm field. Subsequently a village grew up around the crossroad and in 1899 the village of Voorheesville, named for the aforementioned railroad attorney, was incorporated. These railroads crossed at South and North Main, and for a significant period of time there was a passenger train that came through Voorheesville. Voorheesville for several years in its early days (it was originally referred to as Union Depot before being named after Alonzo B. Voorhees) was somewhat of a tourist attraction. The village boasted a hotel, the Friars Grove Hotel, located right across Grove Street from the train station. Just next to the hotel was a brick oven bakery, and further up Grove was a cider mill. The mill was bought out by Duffy Mott and Mott's Cider before eventually closing. The village also claimed the renowned Harris House, a tavern and hotel for the "weary traveler", a foundry that closed after a fire whose remnants still stand today, and Vly Creek (which runs through the entire village before connecting to the Normanskill Creek in Guilderland) was damed up near the present day elementary school as a swimming hole. Finally until 2003/2004, the village railroad crossing was unique only like one other location in the United States in that four different sets of railroad tracks ran through the village and crossed at one point. The double tracked CSX line is still frequently used, while the remains of the Albany/Susquehanna line and the Westshore lines remained unused. Then in 2003 and 2004 the Albany Susquehanna line was torn up, leaving the crossing to be only a part of history.


According the 2000 Census, the racial makeup of the village was 98.7% White, 0.6% African American, 0.4% American Indian or Alaska Native, 0.9% Asian, 0.0% Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander, and 0.1% Some Other Race. Of the 2,705 person total population, 35 were not White alone or in combination.[1]


Voorheesville's two schools service the village itself, most parts of the Town of New Scotland and the Village of Slingerlands, with some students coming from the outskirts of the Town of Guilderland, Town of Bethlehem, and Village of Altamont.

Athletics at Voorheesville high school include boys and girls tennis, cross country, soccer, track, basketball, swimming (teamed together with neighboring Guilderland High School), and volleyball. Single sex sports include softball, baseball, and football. Co-ed sports are cheerleading, wrestling, bowling, and golf. Their mascot is the Blackbird and they claim three NYSPHSAA titles with Boys Soccer in 1990, and Girls Basketball in 1998 and 2002. In the 2002-2003 school year a brand new gymnasium was opened that seats roughly 500 with the unique aspect of bleachers only on the south side of the gymnasium. That fall also saw brand new soccer and football fields opened along with the school's first running track. The football field was dedicated to former coach and player Tom Buckley who died in the mid 1980's. Just a quarter mile down Route 85 A lie additional practice soccer fields as well as another baseball field, collectively known as the satellite fields. Voorheesville's student body is very active in supporting its teams despite its relatively small numbers. The "Birdcage" is often found at boys basketball games loudly supporting the team. Voorheesville competes in Classes B, CC, C, and D depending on the sport.

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