hill country observerThe independent newspaper of eastern New York, southwestern Vermont and the Berkshires


JUNE 2014 Facebook linkHill Country Observer TwitterHill Country Instagram page NEWS ARCHIVE



Railroads become Oil Pipeline

Village governments targeted in push for consolidation

The side-by-side office buildings of the town of Greenwich and the village of
Greenwich, N.Y., could soon become one operation: On June 24, local voters will decide whether to do away with the village government that was first incorporated in 1809. A similar vote is planned for August in the village of Salem, 12 miles to the northeast. And more village governments across eastern New York could soon be targeted for elimination, thanks to a new state law that makes it much easier for citizens to petition for government consolidation.
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Vermont Passover

In defense of love.

Photos depict couple in historic right-to-marry case. The black-and-white photographs could be of almost any happy, affectionate family from the mid-1960s. read more



Columbia County shifts course on nursing home

After several years of pursuing plans to build a new $32 million replacement
for the county-owned Pine Haven nursing home, Columbia County supervisors
began moving instead in late May to solicit bids from private companies
interested in buying the current home. read more


Saving Farmland

Saving a planet, one step at a time

Shira Wohlberg has walked more than 1,000 miles since March, when she
set out from Los Angeles as part of a coast-to-coast march aimed at spurring
action to combat climate change. Wohlberg, a dancer and massage therapist
from Williamstown, Mass., said by phone from New Mexico that the decision to
commit several months of her life to the march required a leap of faith

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Hildene’s focus turns to ecological stewardship

Stately historic properties make fine museums, though once visitors have
seen some of these grand old estates they may figure they’ve already had
the full experience. But Hildene, the Lincoln family home in Manchester,
Vt., has spent the last decade planning and working toward becoming
more than just a museum. Instead, it’s evolving into a working farm and
estate poised to take advantage of 21st century interests in environmental
stewardship and sustainability.
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Belcher Hollow Forge, Handforged iron