First Day at the John Brown Farm is just one of the many outings sponsored by the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation and the Department of Environmental Conservation to encourage New Yorkers and visitors to the Empire State to enjoy nature’s winter wonders.
Rich in history and contemporary relevance, the home of abolitionists John and Mary Brown has attracted sojourners from around the country and around the globe for more than 160 years.
The First Day Hike will begin around the flagpole, at 11 a.m., with a land acknowledgment and a short orientation about the Brown family, the Black settlers of ‘Timbuctoo’ who preceded them on this rugged landscape, and the history of Watch Night, or “Freedom’s Eve,” Dec. 31, 1862, when African Americans across the country gathered together and awaited word that the Emancipation Proclamation, first issued by President Abraham Lincoln on Sept. 22, 1862, would indeed take effect when the clock struck midnight.
From there, John Brown Lives! and Office of Parks Parks staff will lead groups on a choice of three different hikes ranging in elevation from minimal to moderate. The longest loop is 1.8 miles.
Trail maps will be available for people who wish to venture on their own.
Revelers will be expected to wear masks, maintain social distance when in proximity to others, and dress for the weather.
Register in advance via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or text or leave a voice message at 518-744-7112.