A Brief History
There are records that trace the earliest Dutch residents of the town back to about 1640. Family names from the period of time include Van Alstyne, DeForrest / DeFreest, Sharpe, Van Eiveren and Van Duesen.
John E. Van Alen, early United States Congressman and local surveyor, laid out most of the property lines in the western portion of Rensselaer County during the 1790s. He owned a large tract of land and sizable farmstead in Defreestville.
The Town of North Greenbush was also formed from the Town of Greenbush in 1855 by an act of the New York State Legislature. One of the villages in the town, called Bath-on-Hudson, was annexed to the city of Rensselaer in 1901.
In addition to Bath, Blooming Grove (now Defreestville) and Wynantskill grew into flourishing settlements in the early 1800’s. In the 1920’s the Snyder’s Lake area became a popular place for summer homes and recreation.
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