Black Grocery Road to Hillsdale
(sections open and closed)

orphan-farm-hillsdaleLENGTH: Approximately 5.0 miles

PRESENT STATUS: 1.3 miles Anthony Street to Black Grocery Road paved and open. 3.7 miles CLOSED to the public.

STATUS DETAILS: The design documents for this 5-mile stretch of Trail are complete and are awaiting approval from NYS Office of Parks and Recreation and Historic Preservation.  Two sections are open.  These sections are from the Taconic State Park to the Orphan Farm Meadow and from Anthony St. to Black Grocery Rd.

To be developed as trail is constructed.

Hillsdale: The poet Edna St. Vincent Millay, who lived in Austerlitz, used the Hillsdale Station frequently. Hillsdalewas the site of a 19th century iron works, and after 1900, the town had a Sheffield Farms milk plant. After the milk plant closed, it was used by a wholesale produce distributor. Hillsdale had a cattle pen for shipping cattle by rail. Herrington’s Lumber received building supply products by rail until service ended in 1976. Hillsdale was an important station for vacationers and weekenders from Columbia County and nearby Massachusetts. Children traveling to summer camps in the Berkshires took special camp trains and got off at Hillsdale. Copake Falls Station served the many camps in West Copake.

Parking at Black Grocery Road and at Hillsdale Herringtons parking lot by Rail Trail Kiosk.

*Note: Many thanks to local railroad historians Heyward Cohen, Jack Shufelt, and Lou Grogan (The Coming of the New York and Harlem Railroad, Pawling, NY: Louis V. Grogan, 1989) for much of the railroad history that appears above.