Post Card Gallery
Wappingers Falls In Days Gone By
What did the Village of Wappingers Falls look like around the year 1900? It was the time of the horse and carriage. Small business shops were everywhere within walking distance of the landmark stone bridge. It was the golden age of postcards.
The Wappingers Historical Society prepared an exhibit in 2014, reproducing large scale replicas of selected postcards in our collection. The postcards were chosen to show a well-rounded view of the Village of Wappingers Falls ‘in days gone by”. The original exhibit also displayed local business advertisements and artifacts from that era. This exhibit was on display at the Mesier Homestead from 2014-2016. The postcard posters and an enlarged Sanborn map (1890) of the Village are now on permanent display at the American Legion Hall on Spring Street, Wappingers Falls.
The post cards in the exhibit are shown on this page.
Wappinger - Postcard History Series, by David Turner
Wappinger’s name is derived from the Native American Wappani tribe that once lived along the eastern shore of the Hudson River. The era between 1870 and 1930 was the town’s golden age, when Dutchess Bleach Works was at its height of operation and Sweet Orr and Factory sold denim overalls across the country. While the Village of Wappingers Falls was the center of economic and community life, the rest of the town was rural by comparison. Farmland dominated the landscape to the east of the village, and small river hamlets dotted the Hudson to the west. Although the farmland and factories are gone and the river traffic has slowed, remnants of Wappinger’s past are still visible.
David Turner has lived in the Town of Wappinger his entire life. More than half of the 200 images in Wappinger are part of a personal postcard collection. Through the generous help of the Wappingers Historical Society, the Grinnell Library, and lifelong residents, Wappinger displays a vivid portrait of a bustling and ever changing community.
David's book is on sale in our Gift Shop for only $22.00. Order yours today!