Saturday, September 4, 2010

Cornie Hardenbergh and his Sheep Story

2010 Sheep in Saugerties, NY- Lucey Bowen

                                                    Friday, May 13, 1938
Dear Carl,
      I went out to Stone Ridge to see the famous Hardenbergh sheep flock and talked to Cornelius M. Hardenbergh who is a direct descendent of the great family that had such a large patent at one time. He says that most of the Hudson Valley farmers have given up their sheep growing, I mean raising, because you can’t get anything for sheep these days. Sometimes he cuts the wool and when a Jewish peddler comes around he sells his wool to him. Another reason it is difficult to raise sheep is that the wild dogs along the Hudson are so bad. They come from miles around especially the collies and the police dogs and kill the sheep. Sometimes a sheep dog will guard his flock and then go off by night for miles and miles and kill the sheep in other flocks. Just for the hell of it. They have found wool in their mouths from other sheep in neighboring flocks. Corny Hardenbergh said one winter a strange thing happened. He was delivering a sheep of her lamb and she was having trouble so he decided to let the lamb go and save the sheep. Then he discovered that she was trying to deliver a lamb that had eight legs and two bodies and one head. He had already it killed it however and now he wishes he had killed the mother and saved that strange lamb as it would have been something to see. Most of the farmers along the Hudson raise Shropshires.


  1. Gotta say I was a little surprised to see this come across my google alerts.

    Any other mentions of this other CMH in the letters?

  2. Not as surprised as I am to get mail from Cornelius Hardenbergh!
    I'm sorry to say that the brief encounter was it. If you are interested, I will be soon getting to post Dad's take on Mrs. Redmond and the Astor Orphans. Can I send you a copy of the 2009/Quadricentennial re-issue of my Dad's book of photographs of the Hudson?
    Lucey Bowen