The Rockefeller family contributed a lot to US history. When you hear their name you think of Rockefeller Center but from museum wings, historic mansions, state parks, public policy, etc – they are there.
Along one of our favorite walking paths, the Old Croton Aqueduct trail, lies Rockefeller State Park Preserve.
Usually we get there by taking Metro North to Philpse Manor and walk through the Sleepy Hollow cemetery (some of the Rockefeller’s lay here). This time around we were on the express Tarrytown train which doesn’t stop at Philpse Manor so we decided to catch the Aqueduct Tail in Ossining.
Since 1983, over 1,600 acres of the Rockefeller estate have been deeded to the State of New York as a gift. Rockwood Hall was once a 204 room summer home of William Rockefeller, John D. Sr.’s brother. It was located within the family estate “Pocantico” in Westchester County.
The trails you walk on were once carriage roads. The mansion use to look like this.
When William died in 1922, the estate was converted into country club that went bankrupt soon after. In 1937, John D. Jr. acquired the land and had the mansion razed in 1941-1942.
The Rockefeller family donated Rockwood Hall to NY State in 1999.
Sheep keep the overgrown land in check. You can read more about it here.
Views overlooking the Hudson.
It’s hard to believe The Rockefeller Preserve is a designed space.