Rosendale NY History

Photo by Chamber member John Fischer

The Rosendale region was first settled by Europeans in the late 17th century and was inhabited by the Lenape Native Americans prior to European contact.

The history of Rosendale begins with the history of “natural” or “Rosendale” cement. First discovered in the 1820’s during excavation of the Delaware and Hudson canal, “Rosendale cement” was found to have extraordinary hydraulic properties and soon became the primary source for cement production for the United States. During the boom years (circa 1898), Rosendale produced 3.5 million barrels of cement a year. During peak production, Rosendale had 15 cement plants employing nearly 5,500 men and produced 41.9% of all the cement manufactured in the United States. Of all the cement plants in the U.S., 38% were in the Rosendale district.

In fact, Rosendale cement was so important economically that the village of Rosendale was created to draw a circle around the cement-producing district. As a result, the village of Rosendale was created from the neighboring townships of Hurley, Marbletown and New Paltz in 1844.

Rosendale Natural Cement was used in the construction of some of the most enduring landmarks of the nation. The Brooklyn Bridge, the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty, the wings of the U.S. Capitol, the Washington Monument, Grand Central Terminal, the Croton Aqueduct and dams, the Pennsylvania Railroad tunnels, the New York State Thruway. Thousands of other public works projects all got their start in the mines of Rosendale, New York.

See the following links for additional history of Rosendale, New York:

Century House Historical Society web-site:

Wikipedia web-site:,_NY#History