Historian Contact Info

General Historian phone#:
845-783-1900 ext. 143

Address: 101 Mine Road
Monroe, NY 10950 - Lower Level

James Nelson

phone icon (845) 783-1900 ext 143
fax icon (845) 782-5597
email icon EMAIL

The Village of Monroe was established from a small farming community after a disastrous fire destroyed nearly all the buildings at the heart of the settlement.  The village and its boundaries were created in 1894 as a result of the need to establish a volunteer fire district to avoid such future calamities.  

Although the town itself was incorporated in 1799, settlement was well established by the time of the Revolutionary War with Dutch and English coming as early as the 1600’s.  

It was a perfect setting for a hamlet with abundant water and farmable lands nestled in the picturesque valley of the Ramapo.  Rung by protective mountains and  yet only a short distance to the important access of the Hudson river; so beautiful in fact that it was often likened to the tranquil foothills of Scotland. 

Monroe was once the lands of the Lenepe Indians and the domain of the prehistoric Mastadont, ancient glaciers left behind a land perfect for settling and a river ideal for milling.

The Monroe Historical Society was established in 1974 and endeavors to preserve the history of the Town of Monroe, the village of Monroe, the village of Harriman, and the village Kiryas Joel through photographs, artifacts and written history. Please explore our site or visit us and learn about the history of your town and villages.

For more information, please visit the Historical Society.


The Monroe Historical Society will present a special program with the premier of a 
Documentary on the history and restoration of "Rest Haven" which served as a 
summer home for blind women from 1923 to 1968.  This documentary was made 
for and produced by Preservation of Rest Haven.  Rest Haven was purchased in 
1923 by Monroe resident M. C. Migel who was one of the founders and first President 
of the American Foundation for the Blind. 

Along with this documentary we will also by showing the original movie the "Miracle Worker"
which is the inspiring story of Helen Keller, who often would visit Rest Haven.

The documentary and film will be shown in 
Theater Six, Town of Monroe Arts and Civic Center, 34 Millpond Parkway, Monroe, NY.  
The program will be presented on Saturday October 7th and repeated on October 8th, 
the program will begin at 1:00 pm on both dates. As always the program is free to the public,
reservations are not necessary.  The Monroe Historical Society website is Monroehistoryny.org 
and for more information on Helen Keller and Rest Haven visit website helenkellermonroeny.com