Trails and Tribulations 2
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This is one of a series of 5 caches that make up the "Horace Greeley History Hunt 2.0" created by the New Castle Historical Society, located in Chappaqua, NY, to promote interest in local history and awareness of our town’s remarkable open land. All five will be logged separately. In each of the first four (found in any order), you will find a clue in the form of a token. Take one token from each. Once you have them all, you will be able to find the fifth, bonus cache.
The Burden Preserve is 123 acres located on Sheather Road just off Route 128 on the east side of New Castle. The Preserve’s six trails proceed through wetlands, over streams and past a large pond before going uphill where one can look to the southeast. The longest trail is .7 miles with the shortest being .2 miles. One can see everything from a Red Tailed Hawk to salamanders and spotted turtles to song birds. The property’s wetlands help to preserve water quality and its waters flow toward the Croton Reservoir.
The property belonged to William Burden (1906-1984), the ambassador to Belgium under Dwight Eisenhower. Mr. Burden, the great-great-grandson of railroad baron Cornelius Vanderbilt, was also a longtime President of the Museum of Modern Art who oversaw much of its expansion in the 1950s and 1960s. He was the founder of William A. M. Burden & Co, a Wall Street Investment company, and donated funds for the Burden Auditorium to Harvard in 1971. In 2003 the Town of New Castle purchased 112 acres from the heirs of the Burden estate as part of its open space program. There were four separate parcels involved. The Preserve was formally opened in October 2008.
As you leave the preserve: At the corner of Sheather Road and Route 128 notice the building with a bell cupola on top. It was the former District #1 school house, now a private home. This building was one of 12 area school houses constructed in the 1800s.
The cache is in the remnants of something that looks like it had once been a magnificent stepped waterfall or other cascading water feature. Now it is practically consumed by the second growth forest. Watch out for broken glass and other detritus! Please: Each team take only one token!
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