The Blauvelt Free Library is situated in one of Western Highway's landmark Dutch sandstone colonial homes. The original dwelling was probably a small wooden structure erected in 1752 in the crude timber frame style of the earliest settlers. The house grew in size and stature in 1852 when Judge Cornelius I. Blauvelt added a prominent west wing and second story. At this time, the Judge, his wife Elizabeth, and their two daughters occupied the house.
Another attached wooden clapboard building to the north faced the street and served as a post office and general store shortly after the Civil War. Because Judge Blauvelt was a station agent for the Erie Railroad, which he helped bring to the area, he was instrumental in the building of a depot at the base of his property which made catching the train to New York City a mere stroll across the lawn. Successive inhabitants, notably the Raab family who occupied the house for over 100 years, at which time it was also noted for the elaborate boxwood gardens which adorned the south lawn. The Raabs also served as station agents and postmasters until Catherine Raab sold the house in 1958 - and the building was thereafter identified as the Blauvelt-Raab Home.
The library association purchased the building in 1961 and renovated it for use as the Blauvelt Free Library's permanent home, inaugurated in 1964. For a more complete history of the hamlet, its library and much more, click the ABOUT US tab and visit the Blauvelt Free Press page to download the book: "One Hamlet, Many Blauvelts, and the Library at the Heart of It All," or pick up a copy at the library. Our Director, Laura Grunwerg, will autograph it for you!