This beautiful old house beside the Catskill aqueduct located in the fields between North Drury Lane and Stone Castle Road was the home of Thomas Colden of the prominent Colden family.
Thomas Colden was the grandson of Cadwallader Colden, Lieutenant Governor of NY prior to the Revolution. His Aunt Jane Colden is often considered the first lady botanist of colonial America and his father was an Ulster County judge. It is believed that Thomas’ father built this house for him on family lands around 1770. Four years after, Thomas was elected Sheriff of Ulster County. When the American Revolution began, his family were staunch Loyalists with Thomas becoming a captain in the British army before he was captured and imprisoned for most of the war. After the war, Thomas came back to live in the house and upon his death in 1826, the house passed to his nephew, another Cadwallader.
In the years after the Colden ownership of the house, the house was the nucleus of Alexander Campbell Sr.’s creamery chain that stretched across the state. Campbell claimed to be the first to bottle milk and to pasteurize it in New York City.
Today, the house is a private residence where its 18th-century character has not diminished. From its gambrel roof, sloping dormer windows and handsome doorway, it stands as well preserved reminder of the area’s Colden family influence.
Old Houses of Hanover: Historic Sites of the Town of Montgomery, Orange County, New York
Old Orange Houses Volume II by Mildred Parker Seese