The “Claremont, New York” in this turn-of-the-century postcard looks like a Hudson River village, doesn’t it? But it’s actually the site of present-day Riverside Drive and 124th Street.
“Upon the high promontory overlooking the Hudson, on the south side of Manhattanville, is Jones’ Claremont Hotel,” states an 1866 Hudson River guidebook.
“[It’s] a fashionable place of resort for the pleasure-seekers who frequent the Bloomingdale and Kingsbridge roads on pleasant afternoons.”
Originally built as a country estate around 1780, it became a roadside tavern by 1860, a favorite of horsemen, cyclists, and drivers and frequented by wealthy families and celebs of the day, such as Admirable Dewey and Lillian Russell.
Battered by Prohibition and the Depression, the Claremont burned in a mysterious fire in 1951.
The city didn’t completely forget about this remnant of old Manhattanville; a plaque exists in Riverside Park (above), marking the spot where this Hudson River estate turned popular tavern entertained countless New Yorkers.
[Tablet photo from the New York City Parks Department]
Tags: Claremont Inn, Hudson River estate, Lillian Russell New York, Manhattanville, New York City taverns, New York in the 1860s, Old New York City, old New York taverns, Riverside Drive, Riverside Park tablet