In the process of researching for the blog, I’ve had opportunities to visit with some family members and have some really cool conversations. Part of one conversation was a brief statement my mom made: “Look into the name Bailey. The Baileys owned Bear Mountain and they are back there somewhere”. Then she gave me a first name, too – “Abigail”, she said.
Turns out that Abigail Bailey was married to my 3rd great grandfather, John C. Montanye. And, indeed, they did own at least part of Bear Mountain – more research on that, forthcoming.
So, as I googled the Bailey/Montanyes I was led to the “Baileytown Cemetery”. In a conversation with my Uncle Richie and Aunt Marti, he said that he had tried to go to that cemetery, but it is on “private property” and even the State Police explained to him that you can’t cross the property that leads to the cemetery.
Never to be told “you can’t”, I am as you know, a Perry Girl, after all, I did some further digging – no pun intended, and learned that the cemetery is technically in Harriman State Park, a piece of Bear Mountain, and that, yes, you CAN get to the cemetery without crossing private property. It’s a three and a half mile hike IN and then another 3 and a half out, but you can do it. AND, you can get there by working with the Parks Department, who will give you access through the locked gate, provided you schedule your visit with them.
So, now I, and my husband, Jon, are honing our hiking skills and will soon be headed to Baileytown Cemetery, the long way!
In the meantime, I found a video on youtube that you really must see (Deyo, who is mentioned in the video, is the son of John C. and Abigail Bailey Montanye):
I also found a few pictures of the cemetery. Here’s one of them!
So, my hope is that Jon and I will be in New York before the end of this summer and I will actually visit this family cemetery in person. Stay tuned…