Crossroads of Rockland History: Skunk Hollow (Revisit)

2022-02 Crossroads - Skunk Hollow Marker

Skunk Hollow with Joan Geismar
This program originally aired on February 21, 2022. To listen, click here.

On this episode of  "Crossroads of Rockland History," we revisited the interview with historical archeologist Joan Geismar and the fascinating area known as Skunk Hollow.

Dr. Geismar has been a practicing urban archaeologist since 1981 and wrote her dissertation on Skunk Hollow. Skunk Hollow, or “the mountain,” was a free black community from 1806 to 1905. The first known deed, dated 1806, belonged to Jack Earnest from Palisades. In 1841, William Thompson, an African Methodist Episcopal itinerant preacher, bought Jack’s house, built a church on his land, and became the resident preacher. More than one hundred families lived in Skunk Hollow, including the Browns, Olivers, Siscos, Thompsons, and Williamses. 

Dr. Geismar is a founding member of Professional Archaeologists of New York City (PANYC), its president for four non-consecutive terms, and a member of the Executive Board since 1984. She also serves on the Preservation Committee of the Municipal Art Society and is the recipient of several preservation awards. In 1999, she was designated a Centennial Historian of the City of New York by Mayor Rudolph Giuliani. Her research interests include, but are not limited to, community studies and the development of the urban condition, such as landfill, transportation, housing, and sanitation issues.

Learn more about Skunk Hollow here:  https://aahsmuseum.org/dt_portfolios/skunk-hollow/

Crossroads of Rockland History, a program of the Historical Society of Rockland County, airs on the third Monday of each month at 9:30 am, right after the Jeff and Will morning show, on WRCR Radio 1700 AM and 
www.WRCR.com. Join host Clare Sheridan as we explore, celebrate, and learn about our local history, with different topics and guest speakers every month. If you want to listen to the live broadcast, and you aren't local, simply download the TuneIn Radio App on your smartphone or tablet and search for WRCR. We are pleased to announce that our archived podcasts are available for streaming on the www.RocklandHistory.org website and all of the major podcast platforms, including Apple, Stitcher, Google, and Spotify.

The Historical Society of Rockland County is a nonprofit educational institution and principal repository for original documents and artifacts relating to Rockland County. Its headquarters are a four-acre site featuring a history museum and the 1832 Jacob Blauvelt House in New City, New York.


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