Historical Society

PO Box 22
Amenia, NY 12501

Genealogy Information: Betsy Strauss  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

General Information: Maureen Moore  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

 

About the Society

The Amenia Historical Society was established in 1969. Its mission has been to preserve Amenia’s history by maintaining an archive of family and topical files containing documents, photos and memorabilia. The Society also strives to promote Amenia’s long and rich history through programs, community events, and publications.

The AHS genealogy committee is busy answering requests for information regarding former Amenia residents. Although much data is available online, our family files often provide helpful information in answering questions from researchers. Betsy Strauss, our genealogy chairperson, may be contacted by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

In the past few years, several genealogy requests have led to the discovery of interesting stories, for example, an Irish immigrant lad who became a legendary hero in Amenia; a missing Amenia gravestone of 1787 found near Albany; a Civil War soldier’s journal; and most recently, a visitor from Nagaland, India, who came to say thank you for the missionary couple who went to India in 1868 and brought about a transformation among her people. Some of these fascinating stories have provided excellent material for AHS programs and community events.

The Amenia Historical Society needs more members, who are interested in local history and who enjoy getting involved with programs and ongoing projects. One may email Maureen Moore at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  for more information.

BOOKS

Early History of Amenia, by Newton Reed, was originally published in 1875. In its 4th printing in 1975, a collection of essays, “Impressions by Dewey Barry” was added. Our new 5th edition includes, for the first time, photos and maps. It may be purchased through the historical society.

In Early History of Amenia, our celebrated 19th century historian, Newton Reed, captured soon-to-be-lost information about those persons who settled in Amenia prior to 1800. He described the growth of each hamlet, its church and its industry. He documented the part Amenia played in the Revolutionary War and in the founding of this country.

A century later, Amenia was blessed to have a local historian, Dewey Barry, who submitted his well-researched essays to the Harlem Valley Times for publication. Curious stories, often unearthed in old newspapers, led Barry to do a thorough investigation of the details and to produce entertaining, yet authentic, versions of the tales. These stories were added to Newton Reed’s book in its 4th edition.

Another book of historical value and available through AHS is The Amenia Cookbook. It is a delightful read, not only filled with favorite recipes, but also with historical tidbits and candid photographs of Amenia’s families and friends. This is no ordinary town cookbook. It is a cookbook, plus history, and makes a great gift for anyone.

To order either of these books, contact Maureen Moore at

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

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