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Neversink Town

Neversink Town Hall is located at 273 Main Street, Grahamsville NY 12740; phone: 845-985-2262. Neversink was incorporated in 1798 at which time it was a part of Ulster County. It became a part of Sullivan when the county was created in 1809.

Beginnings [1]

The first settlers pronounced the name Narvasing. In the Session Laws of 1798, it is spelled Nevisinck; in the act erecting Fallsburgh, Nevisink; in a settlement deed it is given as Naewersink, and in Sauthier's map, as Never Sink. We are familiar with 3 pretend translations of the word Neversink. (1) It is said to mean mad river. This is expressive of the wild and turbulent character of the stream when it is excited by floods. (2) "A continual running stream, which never sinks into the ground so as to be dry in places." (Eager's History of Orange County.) This rendering has for its base the absurd fact that the name as now spelled is a compound of two English words. (3) In Webster's American Dictionary, page 1629, the word is said to mean "highland between waters." This translation is evidently suggested by the Highlands of Neversink on the coast of New Jersey. Our Neversink is "water between high lands."

In 1800, when the first census was taken after Neversink was erected, its population was 858. Perhaps half of these were living in what is now Rockland and Fallsburgh; therefore, in 1800 there must have been about 80 families within the present bounds of the town.

One of the ancient settlements of Sullivan County was in the present town of Neversink, about two miles below Grahamsville. Here, about the year 1743, Tobias Hornbeck, Jacob Klyne and perhaps a few others, commenced clearing and improving farms. They bought their lands from the Trustees of Rochester, believing that this region was within the limits of the patent granted in 1703 by Queen Anne to Colonel Henry Beekman, Joachim Schoonmaker, Moses DuPuy and their successors, in trust for the benefit of the freeholders and inhabitants of Rochester.

During the Revolutionary War the settlement begun by Klyne and Hornbeck was abandoned, and thereafter Neversink was virtually unoccupied by white people until 1788, although it was the scene of interesting events during the struggle for independence.

  1. James Eldrige Quinlan, History of Sullivan County, G. M. Beebe and W. T. Morgan, publishers, Liberty NY, 1873
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