Kaatscast: the Catskills Podcast

History Episodes

Dec. 20, 2022

Sea Lion Training in ... Kingston! The Tale of Sharkey and "Seal Coll…

Just off the Kingston traffic circle, you'll find a couple of gas stations, a used car dealer, and a drive-through vegetarian burger joint. But in the 1940s, this was the site of "Seal College," a training facility for some o...

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Dec. 6, 2022

Kenny Bloodgood's Catskills Connection to a Famed Western Artist

Charles Shreyvogel was an Eastern artist who painted famous Western scenes. His favorite model was also decidedly non-Western. Greene County’s Kenny Bloodgood recounts tales of his great-uncle Grant and his unlikely appearanc...

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Nov. 8, 2022

Witness Cremations at the Historic Wiltwyck Cemetery

When the Wiltwyck Cemetery and family crematory started following us on Instagram, instead of getting ... well ... creeped out, we decided to reach out, and learn about this unique establishment. Kingston's Wiltwyck Rural Cem...

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Oct. 25, 2022

Women and the Vote: an Interview with Catskills Novelist Violet Snow

Catskills writer Violet Snow is the author of To March or to Marry , an historical novel about the lengthy fight for a woman's right to vote, both here in New York, and nationally. As we prepare to cast our …

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Oct. 11, 2022

Overlook's Spirit Stones: Investigating the Indigenous

Overlook Mountain is a popular Catskills hiking destination, complete with a scenic fire tower and the ruins of an historic hotel. According to researchers, and bolstered by groundbreaking scientific evidence, the mountain's ...

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Sept. 13, 2022

Empire State Railway Museum: Catskills Rails Then and Now

In our last episode we took a ride on the old Ulster & Delaware rails with Rail Explorers , a pedal bike experience in Phoenicia, NY. This week, we're at the neighboring Empire State Railway Museum , at home in …

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Aug. 16, 2022

The Classical Concerts that Predate 1969's Woodstock: Inside the Mave…

Long before "THE" concert so closely associated with Woodstock, " Maverick Concerts " have been delighting fans of classical music for more than 100 years. We sat in the historic concert hall with music director Alexander Pla...

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Aug. 2, 2022

Drive Time: at the Schoharie Turnpike – Kaaterskill Clove Road Rally

Earlier this summer, we joined dozens of auto enthusiasts for a 135-mile loop on the Schoharie Turnpike - Kaaterskill Clove Road Rally, one in a series of rallies that pairs Catskills scenery and history with the love of driv...

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June 21, 2022

Fire Tower Challenge!

If you're looking for a unique way to experience Catskills views, there's no better time to check out the Catskills' 6 hiker-accessible fire towers ! The 2022 Catskills Fire Tower Challenge encourages hikers to visit all 6, w...

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Oct. 12, 2021

Watershed Moments: NYC and the Catskills Past and Present

For more than a century, New York City has relied on the Catskills for its abundant supply of clean, soft drinking water. The Catskills' relationship with NYC has been a complicated one, including the staggering loss of entir...

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June 22, 2021

Bramley Mountain Fire Tower

At one time, New York state had more than 100 active fire towers, the purpose of which was to help lookouts –– you guessed it –– spot fires. These days, some of the remaining towers have been repurposed for recreational …

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June 8, 2021

Hanford Mills and the Power of the Past

Hanford Mills Museum operates an authentic water- and steam-powered historic site, which includes a sawmill, gristmill, and woodworking shop. The mission of Hanford Mills Museum is to inspire audiences of all ages to explore ...

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May 25, 2021

Honoring the Dead: Cemetery Stories from Delaware County

This Memorial Day week, we visited two area cemeteries where historians are taking steps to memorialize former Catskills residents in the towns of Delhi and Roxbury. At the Roxbury Methodist Church cemetery, gravestones obscu...

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May 11, 2021

Vintage Baseball in Delaware County

Hankering for some baseball circa 1895? Teams like Mountain Athletic Club and the Bovina Dairymen are playing vintage "base ball" right here in the Catskills. Spectators and players welcome! We spoke with the M.A.C.'s Collin ...

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Dec. 8, 2020

Catskill Historical Views: John D. Clarke

We spoke with Delaware County historian Bill Birns about the legacy of “Hobart’s greatest” (albeit largely forgotten) son, John Davenport Clarke: farmer, forester, and congressman. Catskill Historical Views is a collaboration...

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