Bethesda Home

Bethesda Home, Lansingburgh, New York
Records Inventory – Accession 1982.47

Historical Note – Bethesda Home (1902 – 1982):
The Bethesda Home was founded as a privately funded institution in 1902 in Lansingburgh, New York and was operated until 1982. The Home was managed by a Board of Directors, a Superintendent and in later years a Board of Women Managers also provided assistance. It was founded for older women who were homeless or destitute, although in its early years it cared for children and younger women as well. The Home was funded by donations from Protestant churches in the city as well as from endowments and legacies made by the residents of the Home and their families. The home was located at two places in Lansingburgh and one address in Watervliet; for most of its history it was located at Second Avenue and 113th Street [pw_map address=”5 113th street, troy,ny” width=”400px” height=”200px”] in Lansingburgh. For many years, there was a Bethesda Home Circle and a Friendship Circle of people who assisted by providing linens, preparing monthly suppers and providing entertainment for the residents of the Home.

As the 20th century progressed and progressive social welfare laws, such as Social Security and Medicare were legislated, the need for private residences such as the Bethesda Home decreased and there were fewer applications for residence there. The Home closed in 1982 after arranging to donate their assets to the Eddy Memorial Geriatric Center, Troy, New York. The Eddy was to provide care until decease of the ladies from the Home who moved to the Eddy.  The Presbyterian Home Association also closed around this time and the Bethesda Home and Presbyterian Home Association assets were used to build what is known as the Bethesda-Presbyterian Wing of the Eddy. The last president of the Bethesda Board of Directors was Frank McKnight.

Scope of Records:
The Bethesda Home archives include the Constitution of the Home, Minutes of the Board of Directors, including Treasurer’s Reports, Minutes of the Board of Women Managers, Inspection Reports by the NY State Board of Charities and Dept. of Social Welfare, Annual Reports of the Home and Annual Reports of the Home made for the State Board of Charities, deeds to cemetery lots, wills of residents, Daily Register of Events, House and Home Registers of residents and financial records, including journals, donations, bills and receipts. They provide a detailed documentation of the history of the Home. There are only a few photographs.

Size: 8 boxes and 1 package


Container List:

Box 1:  Constitution, Minutes of Board of Directors of the Bethesda Home of Troy, Revision, 1921

Minutes of the Board of Directors, including Treasurer’s reports, bound volumes, as follows:

v. 1: March 17,1902-February 1/1913, includes minutes and Articles of Incorporation, 11/3/1909; also, dedication of Home, 1/20/1910 with scripture selections read at dedication, list of directors, officers, committees, representatives of churches from Troy and Watervliet and rules of the Home.

v. 2: March 1913-May 1925, minutes

v. 3: June 1925-June 1933, minutes

v. 4: July 1933-December 1938, minutes

v. 5:  January 1939-December 1952 (unbound); Treasurer’s Reports, 1944-1952; also Roll Call of Church Representatives to Board of Managers, 1943-1952(includes names of Board of Managers, names of residents of Home and names of people on waiting list).

Box 2:  Minutes of the Board of Women Managers

Bound volumes,  follows:

  • January 1958-December 1961
  • January 1962-December 1967
  • February 1968-December 1976
  • Inspection Reports, May 1927, May 1937-December 1939, including information about dinners, events at Bethesda Home, health of the residents, donations of gifts and other matters.
  • Reports of General Inspection by NYS Board of Charities, later the NYS Dept. of Social Welfare, 1922, 1922-1923, 1927-1930, 1933.  Also, letter s from NYS Dept. of Social Welfare, 1967; Operating Certificates from New York State , 1974, 1975, 1979.
  • Monthly Reports of a Private Home for the Aged, 1954-1958.
  • Miscellaneous correspondence with NYS Dept. of Social Welfare,  1965; also, Report of a Long-Term Care Home, Bethesda Home, n.d.

Box 3:  Annual Reports

  • First A.R., 1902-1903, printed, 2 copies
  • Second to Thirteenth A.R., 1903-1915, printed, 2 copies of all ex. Second A.R.
  • 20t h A.R., 1922
  • 24th-42nd A.R., 1925-1944, 1949, 1951, typescripts
  • Annual Reports to NYS Board of Charities and NYS Dept. of Social Welfare, 1917, 1920-1923, 1931, 1933, 1941-1943, 1945-1947, 1949-1950, 1964-1967, 1969.
  • Duplicate copies of printed annual reports, 4th, 5th, 8th-13th.
  • 25th Anniversary of Bethesda Home, 2nd Ave. and 113th St., Troy, 1902-1927, 8 copies, includes list of Board of Directors, Board of Managers, Representatives of the Board of Managers; also financial statement of BH, 1927.
  • Reports, minutes of meetings, correspondence of the Investment Committee of BH, 1932-1951, mainly about stocks and mortgage sales.
  • Deeds to burial lots in New Mount Ida Cemetery, 1897, Albany Rural Cemetery,, Woodlawn Cemetery, Schodack, Elmwood Cemetery, Schagticoke,  1880, 1882, Poughkeepsie Rural Cemetery, 1924.
  • Receipts for perpetual care of graves, Albany Rural Cemetery
  • Proprietor’s tickets, (2), Albany Rural Cemetery
  • Mortgages and other documents re: to the purchase of the Bethesda Home property on Second Avenue; also bank books with Union National Bank, 1919, 1931-1939, and Troy Savings Bank, 1934-1940.

Box 4:  Wills and related estate records

Including bank books, insurance premium as follows:

Folder 1:

Sophia Arff, 1931
Frances Barnes, 1938
Cora E. Bruce, 1934
Helen Carpenter, n.d.
Adelina Clark, 1931
Ella A. Cozine, 1931
Mrs. May Lenox Sims Crawford, 1927
Mary Crounse, letter, 1928
Mary J. Fanshaw, 1931
Emma Goodspeed, 1931
Celia Groat, 1931
Sarah Hall, 1931
Jennie E. Hartwick, 1928

Folder 2:

Belle Hendry, 1935
Margaret Hotaling, 1933
Wilhemina Hughes, 1931
Ida Gertrude Kennedy, 1931

Folder 3:

Caroline E. Liney, 1914
Mary Lean, 1931
Mary Kullman, 1931
Charlotte King, 1931

Folder 4:

Emma Lockrow, 1931
Elizabeth Long, 1931
Ella McCrea, 1931
Elizabeth Nash, 1931
Elizabeth M. Nelson, 1920

Folder 5:

Hattie Osterhoudt, 1935
Angelia Palmer, 1931
Frances Palmer, 1931
Mary E. Graham Phipps, 1924
Mary C. Quackenbush, 1931
Florence Saal, 1931

Folder 6:

Frances Yout, 1931
Anna Wetsell, 1931
Mary J. Todd, 1931
Emma Tubbs, 1931
Welling, Lindsley J., 1932
Laura Ophelia Tilley, 1934
Katherine Sherman, 1931
Jane Sherman, 1936

Box 5:  Daily Register/Diary of events at Bethesda Home, 2 vols.,

June 1916-March 26, 1918 and January 1, 1927-December 31, 1927.

These diaries note weather, visits to residents of Home or visits by residents away from the Home, church attendance, inspections, health of residents, and other events.

House Registers, 2 volumes,  1911-1930 and 1918-1957. These include names of residents of the Home during particular years, sometimes with ages given, and a few pages in one volume with details about birth, death, parent’s names of particular residents.

Bethesda Home Register, 1 volume, 1902-1927, register of names of people who came as residents or employees of the Home with date, age, city of residence, and remarks (how and why the person came to the Home and same information about leaving); in chronological order. There are also pages of records of individual residents with more information about them and their residence at Bethesda Home, ca. 1920-1928. Also, a few records of deaths of residents, 1912-1924.

Box 6:  Record Book of Donations, 1902-1927, 1 volume.

  • Lists donations of food and other goods to the Bethesda Home from various individuals, churches and organizations. Also, includes chronological notes about meetings of various groups and donations made to the Home.
  • Ledgers, 3 volumes, of income and expenditures, in broad categories, “care of inmates,” “groceries and provisions,” “individual gifts,” “dues and fines,” “repairs,” “endowment fund income,” and so forth, 1924-1929, 1930-1933, 1934-1943.
  • Daybooks of receipts and expenditures, 4 volumes, 4/1/1909-10/1/1921;  10/8/1921-9/23/1929; 10/1/1929-12/31/37;  1/1/1938-3/31/1945.

Box 7:  Journals of daily receipts and disbursements of the Home

4 volumes, as follows:

  • 4/1/1909-10/1/1921
  • 10/8/1921-9/23/1929
  • 10/1/29-12/31/1937
  • 1/1/1938-3/31/1945

Box 8:  Miscellaneous framed items

As follows:

  • Notice of workmen’s compensation compliance, 1933
  • Photograph of Bethesda Home, 1902-1982, 504 Second Avenue,  Lansingburgh, 1920-1982.
  • Group photograph of ladies in residence at Bethesda Home, n.d., ca. 1940
  • Printing block with photograph of Bethesda Home at 504 Second Ave.
  • Rules of Bethesda Home, Article I: Matron and Article II: Residents, 2 copies, one framed.

Box 9:  Folder of bills and receipts from various businesses

  • Mainly Troy related, providing supplies or services to the Bethesda Home, 1928-1949.
  • Folder of newspaper clippings about Bethesda Home, 1914-1980.
  • Folder of unidentified photographs; also newspaper photograph of Leggett family, including Mrs. John Leggett, who was the first president of the Home.
  • Folder of blank Application for Admission of the Home and three Admission and Discharge forms with information about residents; also copy of the rules of the Bethesda Home; also printed “Bethesda Home Tale” entitled Transformed.
  • Folder of miscellaneous material, including a report of the Corresponding Secretary of the Home for 1942-1943; some correspondence, a list of residents with their ages, bond of John T. Lee to Robert Robinson, West Troy, 1868.

Package I: Incorporation certificate of the Bethesda Home from the NYS Board of Charities, October 13, 1909.