A Walk Down Main Street
Story by Michael Durante Jr.
Photographed by Laurie Szostak
Life must have been strange for George Washington. According to the Village of Cold Spring’s town website, “Myth has it that George Washington drank from a local spring and declared it to be refreshingly cold.” Presto: a town is born!
Today there is much to recommend in Cold Spring besides a cool drink of water. The village is an idyllic Main Street, with American-flagged porches giving way to shops and restaurants as the road slopes down toward the Hudson River. Cold Spring is surrounded by natural beauty—the river, the Hudson Highlands—and indeed among its top attractions are hiking trails, a well-kempt waterfront park and kayak rentals on the Hudson: all places where visitors can immerse themselves in the landscape.
Settled in the 1730s, Cold Spring became a landmark in 1818 with the establishment of the West Point Foundry. The Foundry primarily produced armaments, most famously the Parrott rifle, an antique specimen of which protects the Cold Spring waterfront pier today. Ample work at the Foundry turned Cold Spring into a bustling village by the mid-19th century. Wealthy families built mansions along the Hudson, and artists flocked to the region.