Starting on Memorial Day, our newest exhibit, BEHIND THE SCENES AT CAMP SANTANONI, the museum changes from focus on the Pruyn family to the people and families who worked there. Theses local and regional employees made the Preserve work as a productive farm as well as a seasonal home for its owners.
The exhibit covers some of Art Tummins’ tenure, the longest serving Santanoni employee of almost 52 years. He was hired as a Larabee Truck driver, delivering dairy and produce from the Farm to the Albany Pruyn residence once a week. He advanced to caretaker for and kept that position for 45 years. Learn about Effie Hall, Santanoni’s first laundress and see the state-of-the-art washing machine she used to care for the Pruyn’s and their twenty plus guests’ clothing. There was an abundance of laundry to tend, mend, and iron as they changed often from hiking and fishing garb to dinner dress for the evening meals. Meet the Italian orphan, Salvini, who waited on the Pruyns and their guests during weeks of parties held annually in Santanoni. He was borrowed from a distinguished restaurant in Albany where he was Theodore Roosevelt’s favorite waiter. See the 100+ names of people who worked in or for Camp Santanoni. They came from nearby or afar as the gardener from Bulgaria. A timeline displays the correlation of Santanoni caretakers, ownership, and the major events within Santanoni. Exhibit hours: M-F 12-5pm, Sat. 10-5, Closed Sundays.
The Museum is indebted to extensive collections of photographs and artifacts generously donated by Susan Pruyn King, the only surviving Pruyn grandchild, and the Tummins and Vroman families, longstanding residents of Newcomb.
Camp Santanoni has always prospered from cooperation between town and camp. Today ownership of this beautiful historic site is in the managing hands of the State of New York, but generous support is also provided by the Town of Newcomb and the Adirondack Architectural Heritage (AARCH). The trip into Camp Santanoni is well worth the effort. It’s a moderate walk or bike ride (4.9 miles one way), but visitors can also reserve a horse-driven wagon ride by calling Larry Newcombe at 518-639-5534; 518-480-1743.
Below: Call the Museum 518-582-2274 to reserve time in The Bissell Reading Room shown below. It’s available to anyone desiring to do research with computer access to Ancestry.com, a library with a complete collection of the Tahawus Cloudsplitters, some Newcomb Family Files, and archived photograph albums. Visit the museum’s website: www.newcombhistoricalmuseum.com for further details.