Tuesday, July 14, 2015


Although it was a little muggy today, we had reservations at a National Historic Property in Fort Johnson (which is just outside the city of Amsterdam) for an late afternoon tea.

Old Fort Johnson   is a 1749 limestone house built on the Mohawk River, it's adjoining property is the home of the Montgomery County Historical Society.  It is a beautifully maintained property that was (unfortunately) built by a British loyalist.  But, I guess I can overlook that because we did win the war after all.  And, the property is so stunning and the staff and volunteers are so lovely.

Fort Johnson is about 25 minutes west along route 5 (or the NYS Thruway) which follows the Mohawk River.  Although we were having tea, we decided to stop for lunch first.  We chose Russo's Grill in Amsterdam.  This charming restaurant is still family owned since 1920 and sits across from Lock 11 on the Mohawk. 

Although it doesn't look like much the service is exceptional, the atmosphere authentic and the food comforting.  It is an Amsterdam staple with a long and strong history.
After lunch we continued west on route 5 to Fort Johnson.

The condition of this house is amazing!  It was last privately owned in 1905.  The last owner passed away in 1904 and prior to her death she was a breeder of Angora cats, which she raised in the adjoining property that now houses the MHS.  We were told she sold the cats for $500, which amazing for that time!
After parking we crossed the little foot bridge over the Kayaderosseras Creek, which was flowing pretty well today. 
Since we had some time before tea we strolled around the grounds.  The well maintained grounds include a small garden, outdoor oven (that they do use for baking) and privy.
Since there are some pretty strong storms predicted for today, we were not sure if our tea would be in the garden, on rain days they move it into the main house.  But we were happy to see the tents and tables set up.  And with the Mohawk River just across the street, we had a nice breeze.
All the teas and sweet and savory treats were lovingly made by the volunteers and children dressed in impeccable colonial period clothing served.
The goodies were boxed up and sent home with the attendees and all the teas brewed (both hot and cold) were available in the gift shop.  Since it was a bit warm today I stuck with ice tea and picked up a can along with some other souvenirs before leaving.
We headed home hoping to beat the storms, and luckily we made it.  After a quick jump in the pool to wash off the day, time to settle in and enjoy the evening.


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