Rosendale's History

Town Historian

Bill Brooks

The Town Historian helps to preserve the history of our town by collecting Rosendale memorabilia and photos displayed at the Rosendale Town Hall located at the Rondout Municipal Center. He holds yearly events to promote and educate residents on Rosendale history.

Our Town

A Brief History of the Township of Rosendale

The township of Rosendale came into being on April 26,1844 by an act of New York State’s General Assembly which formed the new political identity from land that had previously been included in the towns of Hurley, New Paltz and Marbletown. The new town included 11,413 acres according to the census of 1875, and its creation was no doubt due to the state’s desire to bring the booming cement industry under one political body.

These mining businesses began in 1825 when blasting for the construction of the locks on the Delaware and Hudson Canal in High Falls had begun and uncovered a natural, hydraulic cement which was extremely durable. This discovery of cement led directly to the formation of the township of Rosendale in 1844 because the state intended to place the booming cement industry under the control of one political body.

At its peak during the second half of the eighteenth century, this cement business involved the operation of at least 19 large companies and several smaller ventures and employed more than 5,000 men. Four million barrels of cement a year were produced which was 50 percent of the total production of natural cement in the United States.

Rosendale Town Historian: Bill Brooks

To view more historical pictures and information, please visit the Historian Page on the Town of Rosendale’s website.

Governmental Organization

The Town was founded by an act of the New York State Legislature on October 23, 1844 and is comprised of the hamlets of Binnewater, Bloomington, Bruceville, Cottekill, Creeklocks, Hickory Bush, parts of High Falls, Lawrenceville, Lefevre Falls, Maple Hill, Rosendale, Tillson and Whiteport.

The Town is located in the County of Ulster, New York, which County is divided for local government purposes into twenty towns and the City of Kingston. In turn, some of such Towns contain incorporated villages established for purposes of providing certain municipal services and facilities to their residents. The Town is a political subdivision of the State having its own elected legislative body, the Town Board, pursuant to Constitutional provisions.

The Town Board consists of five members, the presiding officer of which is the Town Supervisor elected for a two-year term. The four additional members of the Town Board are elected for four years terms every two years. The Town Supervisor and the board members are elected at large.

The Supervisor is the chief executive officer of the Town. Additional Town officers are the Town Clerk, who is elected at large for a four-year term, the Receiver of Taxes, and the Superintendent of Highways who are elected at large for four-year terms and the Assessor, the Superintendent of the Water and Sewer Departments is appointed by the Town Board.

The Town provides various services to its residents including furnishing water and sewer facilities, building and maintaining Town highways and providing public safety through a police department. Fire protection is provided through separate entities, the various fire districts and voluntary fire organizations in the Town. Planning and financing of Town courts are provided by the Town. Regulation of building construction along with the usual municipal services of recreational facilities and street lighting are all Town functions.

The Town’s of Rosendale and Marbletown comprise the Ulster County Legislature’s District # 19. Rosendale is represented by the 19th Congressional District, the 42nd Senatorial District and the 103rd Assembly District.

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