Southside Historic District
Standing witness to the city’s stature, this manicured mix of distinctive homes recalls the aspirations of the inventors, industrialists, and civic leaders who called Poughkeepsie home over a century ago. Comprised of four national historic districts that encompass parts of Academy Street, South Hamilton Street, Garfield Place, Dwight Street and Hooker Avenue, these elegant, tree-lined residential streets showcase 19th century neighborhood planning, especially for the elite. Capitalizing on the city’s growth and prosperity, developers turned farms and private estates into new residential enclaves and built some of the most architecturally significant homes in the area. Those houses, such as the ones on Garfield Place, are the grand equivalents to today’s “model homes” used to attract and inspire more like-minded building. While trolley lines connected residents to businesses in the nearby city center, the spectacular river views and fresh air made this area feel like a world away. Majestic churches were raised to serve the different denominations in the area. Christ Church, completed in 1888, is an outstanding, unaltered example. Two years later, a nearby tennis club was established in the style of the neighborhood to combine good health and athleticism with social activity. Renewed interest in this tranquil part of town has not only guaranteed its preservation, but reinvigorated it. Loving restoration, landmark designation, and active usage puts the Southside Historic District at the forefront of Poughkeepsie’s renaissance.