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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Katonah in Westchester County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

The Beech Allee (Avenue) and Stone Fences

John Jay Homestead

 
 
The Beech Allee (Avenue) and Stone Fences Marker image. Click for full size.
By Michael Herrick, November 10, 2009
1. The Beech Allee (Avenue) and Stone Fences Marker
Inscription.
When Jay assembled his 750 acres by 1800, much of the land had already been cleared indiscriminately by tenant farmers. Stone, however, was abundant and it was put to good use. Jay spent 15 years encircling his property with stone fences and an additional decade dividing it into lots still visible in the newly reforested landscape.

This magnificent allee of European and copper beech trees was planted in the second half of the 19th century by John jay II. To the right of the allee, along the hillside below the main house, the Jays planted a pear orchard which was productive for more than 100 years.

“As one approaches the estate of Jay, the marks of superior taste and cultivation are apparent; the stone walls are more neatly and compactly built and the traveler is refreshed by the grateful shade of maples and elms which were planted along the road by jay and his descendants.”
(John Jay’s success in nurturing the land by sculpting, dividing and planting it over time, is apparent a generation later in this description of the estate from Homes of American Statesmen (1854).

“It always gives me pleasure to see trees which I have reared and planted; and therefore I recommend it to you to do the same, planting is an innocent & rational amusement – my father
The Beech Allee (Avenue) and Stone Fences Marker image. Click for full size.
By Michael Herrick, November 14, 2009
2. The Beech Allee (Avenue) and Stone Fences Marker
planted many trees, and I never walk in their shade without deriving pleasure from that circumstance – the time will probably come when you will experience similar emotions.”

(Excerpt from a letter from John Jay to his son Peter Augustus Jay, 1792.)
 
Erected by Friends of the Jay Homestead. (Marker Number 13.)
 
Location. 41° 15.045′ N, 73° 39.609′ W. Marker is in Katonah, New York, in Westchester County. Marker can be reached from Jay Street (New York State Route 22) 0.1 miles from Beaver Dam Road, on the left when traveling south. Click for map. Located on the grounds of the John Jay Homestead. Marker is at or near this postal address: 400 Route 22, Katonah NY 10536, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. John Jay Homestead (within shouting distance of this marker); Welcome to John Jay Homestead (within shouting distance of this marker); The Sundial and Fountain Gardens (within shouting distance of this marker); The Carriage Drive and Roadways (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Bedford House (about 300 feet away); The Terrace Garden
Old Oak image. Click for full size.
By Michael Herrick, November 10, 2009
3. Old Oak
[ detail from the marker ]
This venerable old oak stood in the old pear orchard near the beech allee until the early 20th century. You can still find traces of its stump near the stone wall on the slope to your right.
(about 300 feet away); The Homestead Farm (about 300 feet away); The North Lawn (about 400 feet away). Click for a list of all markers in Katonah.
 
Categories. AgricultureNotable Places
 
The John Jay Homestead, ca. 1915 image. Click for full size.
By Michael Herrick, November 10, 2009
4. The John Jay Homestead, ca. 1915
[ detail from the marker ]
The Homestead from the garden, ca. 1915 image. Click for full size.
By Michael Herrick, November 10, 2009
5. The Homestead from the garden, ca. 1915
[ detail from the marker ]
The Main House from the Front Lawn, 2009 image. Click for full size.
By Michael Herrick, November 10, 2009
6. The Main House from the Front Lawn, 2009
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut. This page has been viewed 572 times since then and 9 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on , by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut. • Syd Whittle was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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