Fleischmanns, New York

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Fleischmanns is a village in Delaware County, New York, United States. The population was 351 at the 2000 census.[1] Fleischmanns is in the town of Middletown.

Contents

History

Early settlers of this area came from Germany, England, Holland and Ireland. To reach this mountainous place they traveled by horse and wagon (and later by stagecoach) over rough, dusty roads in summer and rutted, muddy paths in winter. Eventually, the road was resurfaced with planks from Kingston to Pine Hill with the cost of maintenance covered by tollgates along the way. Still, it was a difficult journey until the railroad reached the village on May 23, 1870.

Fleischmanns was initially named Griffin Corners in honor of Matthew Griffin, a prominent lawyer (he was admitted to the bar in 1851) and businessman (he owned a store and later a hotel). He also helped to secure the village's first post office in 1848. Griffin died January 11, 1903.

Originally part of the towns of Woodstock and Rochester in Ulster County, the area known today as Fleischmanns became part of Middletown in Delaware County on March 3, 1789. At that time vast tracts of land were owned by a few individuals and farmed by tenants. All 8,000 acres (30 km2) of Fleischmanns land was owned by General Henry Armstrong. The Anti-Rent War, an uprising of Catskill tenant farmers in 1844-1845, led to reforms which put an end to the unfair lease system, and the area began to grow under private ownership.

According to available local sources, it was in 1883 that Charles Louis Fleischmann (born near Budapest, Hungary, educated in Vienna and Prague, founder of the Fleischmann Company famous for its yeast and whiskey), bought property west of the village near the Ulster & Delaware railroad station from John M. Blish. Mr. Blish, an astute local businessman, sold the property at a cheap price to the Fleischmann family recognizing that a summer colony would bring prosperity. Soon summer families built beautiful summer homes abounding with porches, turrets, and terraces and costing $30,000-$40,000 (an enormous sum in those days). They also constructed a deer park, a riding stable, a heated pool filled with spring water, and a trout pond, all luxuries unheard of by the people in this valley. The Fleischmann family even outfitted the Fleischmann-Griffin Corners band with uniforms so that the band could greet the family's private railroad cars at the station.

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