Pond Lily is located in Gallatin, one of the southernmost towns in Columbia County. Gallatin was once part of Livingston Manor, the 160,000 acre manor of the Livingston family, although prior to this, it was inhabited by Mahican Indians. The highest point in the town is Mattashuck Hill, also known as Signal Rock, because it was used by the Indians for fires and smoke signals that could be seen for miles.
Pond Lily is fortunate to be located next door to Lake Taghkanic State Park. The Lake was given the name Taghkanic by the Mahicans – it is translated to “water enough.” It was renamed several times over the years until it reverted to its original name in 1929, when it was donated by Dr McRae Livingston along with some surrounding land to New York State. Outdoor enthusiasts will find plenty of activities to keep them entertained including biking and fishing and nature lovers will marvel at the indigenous wildlife, flora and fauna.
If you spend a day browsing the antiques stores of the Hudson Valley, you may very well come across a highly valued Taghkanic Basket. The basket weavers or ‘Pondshiners’ as they were also known, were reclusive people who lived in the woods south of Pond Lily. They made money by selling rounded baskets, which were exquisitely woven from strips of hardwood. The last basket was made and sold in the 1980s, by Elizabeth Proper, the last true Pondshiner artisan.