Historic Pelham

Presenting the rich history of Pelham, NY in Westchester County: current historical research, descriptions of how to research Pelham history online and genealogy discussions of Pelham families.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

The Horse Trough Installed on Boston Post Road in 1902

In 1901 a group of civic-minded residents of the Village of Pelham Manor formed the "Citizen's Improvement Society". See Saunders, James B., ed., The Pelham Manor Story, 1891-1991 , p. 14 (Privately Printed, Pelham Manor, NY: 1991). Its mission, as its name implied, was to improve life in the little Village. Among other things, the Society donated funds to the Village earmarked for rewards to be paid in connection with arrests of burglars. Id.

The group created a Committee on the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. One of the Committee's first projects was to install a large stone horse trough at the intersection of the Esplanade and Boston Post Road. The drinking trough was completed in 1902. An early post card view of the trough appears immediately below showing the trough as it existed in about 1907.

According to one source, the trough "was finally removed in 1916 because automobile traffic had increased so much [on Boston Post Road] that it was dangerous for horses to stop to drink at the trough." Id.

Today a small stone marker with a plaque stands where the stone horse trough formerly stood. It is not a marker to memorialize the location of the trough. Rather, the stone marker once had set into its top the original mile stone erected in the early 1800s to mark the distance of 17 miles from New York City Hall on the Boston post road. The mile stone was stolen by thieves long ago. All that is left is the plaque affixed to the boulder.

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