Sand Lake Town
Sand Lake Town Hall is located at 8428 Miller Hill Road, Sand Lake NY 12153; phone: 518-674-2026.
Beginnings [1, 2]
The first permanent settlements in Sand Lake were made in the western part, probably in 1765 or 1766. The earliest inhabitants were sturdy Dutch farmers who had come from Holland a few years after the settlement of Albany, or who had come from further down the valley of the Hudson. In 1767 there were but two families residing within the limits of the town. One of these was a family named Adams, residing near the river in the southern part of town. The other was a family named Brett (or Bradt), who had a home a short distance from the Adams family.
The Town of Sand Lake was part of the Manor of Rensselaerwyck, a vast area of land on both sides of the Hudson River owned by the Van Rensselaer family since the early 17th century. When the town was formed in 1812, most of the land was still controlled by the Van Rensselaers through a feudal system of leases, whereby occupants of the land paid annual rents to the family, but did not own the land outright. Farming was the primary occupation in the town, although there were several mills and various other pursuits in the hamlets such as taverns and stores. One of the earliest and most important industries in the town was a glass works, which was begun around 1800 next to what became known as Glass Lake. The factory burned in 1816 and in 1819 it was purchased by the newly organized firm of Crandall, Fox and Company. The company made window glass and underwent various failures and changes in ownership over the next 20 years.