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Green Island Town

Green Island Town Hall is located at 69 Hudson Avenue, Green Island, NY 12183; phone: 518-273-0661. Green Island was incorporated as a village in 1853, and, subsequently incorporated as a town in 1896. It is one of only 5 coterminous Village/Town municipalities within the State of New York

Beginnings [1]

Green Island, once a part of the Manor of Rensselaerwyck, was owned by Colonel Killaen Van Rensselaer. In May of 1708, Van Rensselaer sold the land to Colonel Peter Schuyler. Green Island, which included Fish Island (now Center Island) and Jan Gownsen Island on the northeast, was known as the Bower Turkee or Turkee Farm of Green Island at the time.

In June of 1713, Green Island was sold to Hendrick Oothort, a carpenter from Albany. In 1800, George Tibbits bought 262 of the 387 acres constituting the island. In September of 1833, the Oohort heirs sold the remaining 125 acres to Daniel Cady. Less than a year later, Cady resold the land at a vast profit to Elisha Tibbits, except for 20 acres which went to the Rensselaer and Saratoga Railroad.

Green Island's industrial history began in 1835 when it became a railroad center. In 1853 a series of railroads which had been built separately throughout the state came under one management known as the New York Central Railroad Company. Green Island had been the terminal for the Rensselaer and Saratoga Railroad and became the principal eastern terminal of the New York Central. The Eaton and Gilbert Company was organized by Orasmus Gilbert and Uri Gilbert in 1830 and was located in Troy. They began manufacturing stage coaches but in 1841 started making railroad coaches and, shortly afterward, freight cars. The Troy shops burned in 1852 and the firm moved to Green Island in 1853. The business employed 800 men. In 1849, there were but 30 people living on Green Island but by 1865, the population had increased to 2,104.

  1. Elizabeth Spencer-Ralph, New York State Office of Parks and Recreation, Division for Historic Preservation, Saint Mark's Episcopal Church, Green Island, Albany County, nomination document, 1976, National Park Service, National Register of Historic Places, Washington, D.C.
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