Logo for Overlook Mountain Center
A New York State Non-Profit 501(C)3 Educational Corporation 
Researching Archaeoastronomy and Landscape Archaeology in Northeast America and Beyond
Preserving and Protecting   
Environment – Culture – Community

CELEBRATING our 10TH Year!

From 10 years ago, this video shows the birth of the OMC effort to protect lands in Lewis Hollow on Overlook Mountain.

Identifying, documenting and protecting Native American Ceremonial Stone Landscapes (CSL) as Importnat Resources of Cultural Significance.

“Let the Landscape Speak”    ~Doug Harris Dep. Tribal Historic Preservation Officer (THPO) Narragansett Tribe of Rhode Island (Retired)

 

 

Milestones

Since 2013, the threatened lands in Lewis Hollow on Overlook Mountain, which we set out to preserve, have been secured and is no longer at risk of residential development. Overlook Mountain Center (OMC) stewards the nearly 40 acre upper Lewis Hollow parcel, overseeing land use and access, while conducting research and operating outdoor education programming open to the public.

OMC RESEARCH UPDATE

September 10th, 2022

Peer reviewed paper published in the journal Quaternary Geochronology. “Luminescence dating of Enigmatic rock structures in New England, USA”, by Dr. James Feathers of the University of Washington. Includes dating of the Lewis Hollow site in Woodstock New York to 1550AD, making the dated features the oldest man-made stone constructions found in Ulster County. Additional OSL dating results for Lewis Hollow will be available later this fall.
A personalized URL providing 50 days’ free access to the article. Anyone clicking on this link before October 29, 2022 will be taken directly to the final version of the article on ScienceDirect, which they are welcome to read or download. No sign up, registration or fees are required.
Luminescence dating of Enigmatic rock structures in New England, USA
SCIENCEDIRECT.COM
Luminescence dating of Enigmatic rock structures in New England, USA
Enigmatic rock structures in the form of walls, chambers, tunnels, and cairns are common archaeological features in northeastern United States

Overlook Mountain Center Turns Ten;
Announces New Board of Directors and Officers
Nonprofit Expands Efforts in the Hudson Valley and Catskill Mountains 

January 2022

As it turns ten, the Woodstock, NY nonprofit Overlook Mountain Center (OMC) has expanded both its focus and its board. The organization, known for its guided hikes to indigenous ceremonial stone landscape (CSL) sites in the Catskill Mountains and Hudson Valley, has expanded its efforts to put greater emphasis on relationships with local indigenous tribes as well as on creating partnerships to research these sites, complementing local indigenous knowledge with scientific research. The expanded board, along with an Advisory Council, includes three members of northeastern Indigenous groups, as well as an archeologist, a nonprofit fundraiser, a nurse, a local realtor, former media executive and an assistant district attorney, among others.

“This is a pivotal moment for OMC,” said Glenn Kreisberg. “After spending a decade securing and researching the critical Lewis Hollow site…

Click here to read the full press release

Lewis Hollow site dating using optical stimulated luminescence (OSL) methodology

3/15/2022

OMC recently received results of research that  dated one of the stone cairns in Lewis Hollow to 1590 CE, possibly making it the  oldest stone structure in Ulster County. The findings were made using optically  stimulated luminescence (OSL) methodology conducted by Dr. James Feathers  of the University of Washington and geophysicist Dr. Marine Florin from SUNY  Stony Brook. More detailed information will be released when the results are  finalized this Spring.  

11/06/2021

Dr. James Feathers of University of Washington reported results of OSL samples collected in the fall of 2020. Preliminary dating analysis placed the construction of Great Cairn #4 at 1370 AD +/- 70 years. Final results and dating analysis of a second feature are expected shorty. 

 

 

Ashokan Rail Trail Native American Interpretive Sign installed Oct. 2021

10/15/2021 

Amazing morning on the Ashokan Rail Trail (ART), dedicating the new interpretive sign honoring Native Americans, and renewing the centuries old Nicolls Treaty. Overlook Mountain Center (OMC) is tremendously proud and honored to having taken the lead in helping get this done.
Participants included members of the Ramapough Lunaape Munsee Nation Turtle Clan, led by Chief Vincent Mann, and members of Ulster County government, including County Clerk Nina Postupack and officials from the county planning, executive and archives office. Link to Ulster County Rail Trail Interpretive Panels web page

 

 

Lewis Hollow Site Protection

OMC will continue to facilitate the donation and transfer of ownership of the 38 acre Lewis Hollow Site, from the current owner, Guardian Antiquities Research, LLC, to a non-profit Native American Tribal entity (TBD), for permanent protection in perpetuity of the ceremonial stone landscape (CSL) present on the property.

 

Ulster County/Townships MOU and Land Acknowledgment 

OMC will continue to propose and promote a memorandum of understanding (MOU) between the Ulster County Legislature, as well as local townships, and local and regional Native American Tribes, including the Ramapough Lunaape Munsee Nation Turtle Clan and the United Southern and Eastern Tribes (USET) members. MOUs would acknowledge the existence of CSLs in Ulster County, based on USET Resolution 2007-37, and recognize them as important resources of cultural significance deserving of protection and preservation. The MOU would take the form of a resolution to be voted on by the county legislature and/or county townships and signed by the county executive, town boards and supervisors. OMC will further seek to expanded MOUs to include multiple property agreements (MPA) covering multiple locations of CSLs, not unlike historic covered bridges or red barns, found in our communities.

 

Tribal Ranger Program

OMC will seek to establish a “Tribal Ranger” program by partnering with local and regional Native American tribes, to offer opportunities to tribal youth as hiking and cultural tourism guides, introducing CSLs to the public, on public and private sites in our region. Tribal youth will gain career training and experience toward testing and receiving their NYS DEC Guide License for hiking, camping, hunting, fishing and boating. Grant writing and public and private donations will help fund the “Tribal Ranger” program.

Celebrating Ceremonial Stone Landscapes

OMC will continue to offer monthly hikes to CSL sites in the Catskill Mountains, as well as workshops and programs related to archeoastronomy and landscape archaeology in our region.

We will continue to celebrate and satisfy our need to protect and connect with these sites in a purposeful and meaningful way.

 

Below is the list of accomplished milestones and goals, which speaks to our mission of promoting and supporting the environment, culture and community on and around Overlook Mountain.

CONSERVE - Purchase of Upper Lewis Hollow

The upper 37 acre Lewis Hollow lot was purchased with the help of a local private family foundation, for preservation, education and research of the historic and possible prehistoric stone constructions present on the property. The land features include stone walls associated with Hardenburgh Patent and Livingston family property line sub-divisions as well as those which may be Naive American and ceremonial in origin. The land is now owned by Guardian Antiquities Research, LLC, and is not open to the public. Land stewardship is provided by Overlook Mountain Center which provided access through its interpretive guides and programs. Call 845 417 8384 for more info or go to our Programs page.

Links to articles documenting the preservation effort.

"Forever Wild" Deed on lower parcel

The lower 45 acre lot was purchased by a private individual, who lives in Lewis Hollow, and a “forever wild” deed restriction has been placed on the land, protecting it from development.

COMMUNITY - Programming

Since 2013, OMC has been carrying out interpretive tours and programming including group walks, talks, lectures and workshops on landscape archaeology, archeaoastronomy and local history. Participants included groups such as the 3rd graders from Mtn. Laurel Waldorf School in New Paltz, Boy Scout Troop 31 from Glasco, NY and the Photography Club of Mohonk Preserve members.

Discover more about OMC programming here

CULTURE - NYS Humanities Grant

2019 – OMC received its second New York Humanities grant, to facilitate a community discussion and workshop on the topic: Identifying and Protecting Indigenous Ceremonial Stone Landscapes in our Communities. The talk, titled “Let the Landscape Speak”, was presented by Doug Harris of the Tribal Historic Preservation Office of the Narragansett tribe of Rhode Island.   

2015 – OMC applied for, received and implemented a grant from the NYS Council for the Humanities, to facilitate a community  discussion group on the topic of “work in our community over the years.” This was facilitated by Woodstock Town Historian Richard Heppner and carried out at the Historical Society between March and June.

NY Humanities Grants

EDUCATE - Research and Study

Solving the mysteries of Lewis Hollow on Overlook Mountain is a focus of OMC. By identifying the various resources of historic significance and understanding them is their proper cultural context, a stronger connection to the mountain can be realized and appreciated by those who interact with Overlook. Various expert researchers have visited the Lewis Hollow site and examined the features and artifacts present there.

Below are links to some of their findings.

Press report on research effort at Lewis Hollow site.

The Cairns of Overlook

A letter from SUNY Prof. Nina Versaggi attesting to the uniqueness and importance of the Lewis Hollow Site.

SUNY Nina Versaggi Letter

A report based on the extensive survey of the Lewis Hollow site by researcher and National Geographic grant recipient David Johnson.

Dave Johnson Report

ENVIRONMENT - Future Land Protection

As a land preservation “think tank”, OMC is available to assist other groups and individuals in protecting threatened property and resources of cultural significance. Using “fast track” methods not usually available through conventional land conservancy groups, OMC can help put in place the resources and support needed to protect important, threatened parcels.

Gallery of Mysteries of Lewis Hollow Site

Lewis Hollow cairn

Lewis Hollow "Great Cairn"

GPS site survey by Susan Sweeney - Long view

Sweeney GPS Site Survey

Connect the dots

Connecting the dots

Northern constellation Draco

Draco Petroform map mirrored

Serpent effigy

Petroform Map

Lewis Hollow "Great Cairn"

Draco mythology

Thuban - 3rd star in the tail of Draco...once and future pole star

Contact OMC: 845-417-8384 | P.O. Box 1278, Woodstock, NY 12498

Administrator: Glenn Kreisberg

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