"The Early Days"

Back in the Fall of 1982, a group of about 70 individuals met and 
formed "The Palatine Settlement Society" to begin the process of 
creating a living museum, a "dorf", or village, with adjoining farms, 
forts, trademan's buildings, and churches as might have been 
developed by the first settlers in the central Mohawk Valley 
in the 18th Century. Milford Decker, St. Johnsville Town Historian 
served as its first president.
(October, 1983)
Almost immediately, the old Nellis property along Route 5 about 
one mile east of St. Johnsville attracted their attention, as did 
the Old Stone Store in the village. By 1985, the Society had arranged 
to purchase the property, and the Nellis Tavern, from Aleda Mary 
Nellis Weaver, niece of James Nellis, the last Nellis to live 
in the tavern. 

The pictures on this page are from the 1983 era, giving you a glimpse 
back to the days when the first Society members 
began the task of restoring our Tavern.

View from the northwest corner toward front door

Speaking of the Front Door

View from the northeast on Route 5

Same view, but closer
Hole in roof caused much interior damage

Clearing the forest was no small task!

The building now appears as two volunteers clear the last shrubs.

The forest cleared (1985), but so much left to do

The view of the east end of the building 
with windows boarded up for safe-keeping. Notice the early lime-stone foundation on the left.

 View from the west. Note two doors into the kitchen here. 

South kitchen window (1988)

Making Progress in 1989


               New Porch (design based on 1950 photo)

               Getting dressed up again after all those years

A quick peek at the kitchen in the beginning

         Kitchen fireplace             Lumber on floor is loom         


Partition now removed - south edge of kitchen

Northeast corner of kitchen

The Cheese House arrives


We now call it "The Little Red House"

NOTE: These Photos were copied from the several scrapbooks of the Society's activities.
(Last revised on January 23, 2023) Click "HERE" to return to the Main Page