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Credit: Marist College Library Archives and Special Collections

Shaker Heritage Society

UPPER HUDSON
http://shakerheritage.org/
Albany Shaker Road
Albany, NY 12211
Hours: February to October - Tuesday thru Saturday 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. November & December - Monday thru Saturday 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Guided tours on Saturdays June thru October at 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., when available.
Admission: Free, Donations gratefully accepted. Guided Tours: $3.00 per person
Children Under 12: Free
Notes: Email: shakerwv@crisny.org. Phone: (518) 456-7890

 

Historical Description:

In 1774, a small group of English Shakers led by Mother Ann Lee arrived in New York City. Two years later, they settled in Albany County in an area known (by local Indians) as Niskayuna, called Watervliet by the descendants of the Dutch settlers. The group was known as the United Society of Believers in Christ's Second Appearing. They were commonly referred to as "Shakers," a name the group itself also used.

A Christian religious sect, the Shakers believed in confession of sins, celibacy, separation from the outside world, and common ownership of property as the principal tenets of their faith. They also believed in the equality of the sexes, absence of racial discrimination, the devotion to industry, perfection and pacifism.

 

The Site:

The Shaker's first building, a log cabin built in the winter of 1775-76, was approximately 500 yards north of the Church Family site, which is now the grounds of the Ann Lee Home. There Ann Lee and her small band of followers began to change this swampy land into a farm which eventually grew into four communities or "families": the Church, North, West, and South Families.

The Shaker community here numbered about 350 in the middle of the 19th century, but only a few remained when the last Shaker elder of this community died in 1938 and the remaining Shakers moved to Hancock and Mount Lebanon.

The Society is renovating the 1848 Shaker Meeting House, to serve as headquarters for its educational activities. It offers special group tours of the building and historic district, guided tours on Saturdays, craft courses, workshops, lectures and numerous annual events throughout the year.

 

Directions:

From I-87- Adirondack Northway

• TAKE EXIT 4 OFF NORTHWAY: Rte 155 and Albany International Airport Exit

• Follow signs for 155 (West) and Albany International Airport

• Remain LEFT on rte 155(Delessandro Blvd.) airport will be on your right as you pass by. Do not enter the airport!

• Take a LEFT at second light in airport district onto rte 163/Heritage Lane

• Turn LEFT at Shaker Heritage Museum sign beyond the Shaker Barn and fence

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