Troy history walking tours: Uncle Sam, ghost signs, wild women, mayhem

market block downtown Troy early 1900s

The Rensselaer County Historical Society has a handful of Saturday morning walking history walking tours of Troy coming up over the next few weeks.

The topics range from Sam Wilson to ghost signs to wild women to murder and mayhem...

The tours start at 10:30 am at the Troy Waterfront Farmer's Market info booth. Tickets are $10 and available online. (See the link for each tour.)

September 23: From a Village to a City: Troy from 1789 to 1816
"This tour focuses on the southern end of the historic district where Troy's first businesses and industries grew along the banks of the Hudson River in the area around Ferry Street. Included in this tour is the story of Samuel Wilson, who arrived In Troy in 1789 to start his brick making and meat packing business and becomes vital in supplying meat to the troops during the War of 1812."

September 30: To Protect & Serve
"Firehouses, bells and night constables wiht a dash of murder & mayhem - Troy has an extensive record of passionate flames and political uprising. Throughout time, it has seen many iterations of the groups who serve and protect our dear city. Tour the historic district as we discuss the evolution of Troy's early volunteer - now public servants - fire and police departments. Stops include sites of some of Troy's most famous fires and locations associated with political and social unrest."

October 7: Ghost Signs
"This is a look up, down and around our buildings tour! Remnants of old advertising and names on buildings give us clues to a particular building's past. You will never look at a building the same way after you take this tour!"

October 14: The Wild Women of 2nd Street!
"Throughout the 19th and early 20th century, Troy was home to several progressive-minded ladies who, while politically divided, worked together to foster women's education, debate a woman's right to vote and advocate on behalf of other reforms such as abolition and child welfare laws that encouraged and supported women. Learn about some of these fervently fascinating females including Betsey Hart, Emma Willard and Olivia Slocum Sage."

October 21: Doughboys to Dylan: Changing Times on the Rensselaer County Homefront
"See the sites associated with the home front activities during WWI and the Vietnam war. This tour is in conjunction with the current exhibition on view at RCHS through December of 2017."

October 28: Murder & Mayhem!
"Join this popular tour featuring new true tales of murder and mayhem in Rensselaer County. Visit the sites of the first gallows & jail and hear stories of famous trials including the Veiled Murderess and unsolved cases like the hazel Drew murders. Who knows what ghosts might haunt the streets of Troy? You will, after taking this walk through the more colorful stories of Troy's past."

photo via Rensselaer County Historical Society

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