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Salem NY

"If you will step from the Union Depot in Troy into a Delaware and Hudson car attached to the 5 p.m. express on the Fitchburg Railroad, you will find yourself in the prettiest little town in Northern New York." These words, written by a correspondent to the Troy Daily Press in 1888 about Salem, still ring true.

The rural Salem of today with its hamlets of Shushan and Eagleville has changed little. Only

people and commerce of an earlier time have come and gone, and the automobile has replaced the train service.

Salem NY, with its colonial style buildings, contains a variety of new businesses now. Gone are J.C. Tomasi's Ice Cream Parlor, Abram's Clothing Store, the C.A. Baltz and Sons pajama and shirt business and the Delaware and Hudson Railroad.

The Agway Co. now occupies the D & H railroad yards and a new feed and fertilizer plant on Route 29. The C.B.R.V., Inc., makers of winter sportswear, occupies the C.A. Baltz building railroad yards and a new feed and fertilizer plant on Route 29. The C.B.R.V., Inc., makers of winter sportswear, occupies the C.A. Baltz building while the financial planning firm of Agricultural Assets occupies the original Ondawa Hotel. The Fort Salem Theater spins its make-believe in the old New England Brick Church, and Stewart's Bread 'N Butter Store stands north of Proudfit Hall.

Dairy and potato farming, Salem's major agricultural enterprises, have recently been joined by a resurgence of sheep farming. The rich farmland is still fed by the pure mountain waters of the Battenkill River, White Creek and Black Creek which join at Fitch's Pont before running on to the Hudson River.

Salem continues to be one of the two county seats, and a county court house, jail and sheriff's department are located here. Although county court sessions in Salem ended in 1982, family court located on Main Street still meets weekly.

The village offices, clerk and police are located in the renovated Proudfit Building. The Bancroft Library, the Salem Volunteer Fire Department and the public rooms occupy the rest of the space in the building.

Various professions are well represented in Salem. Two lawyers, two medical doctors in general practice, one dentist and one chiropractor practice in the village. Clergy administer to the churches of various faiths such as Holy Cross Church, St. Paul's Episcopal Church, the Methodist Church and the Presbyterian White Church. Two principals and 50 teachers offer public education in a modern, colonial revival style building on East Broadway.

Active special interest societies and public service groups are numerous in the Salem area. Church-related groups thrive along with groups such as the Salem Volunteer Fire Department, Salem Rescue Squad, Senior Citizens, Salem Foot Lighters, Dr. Asa Fitch

Historical Society, Salem Rotary Club, Francis Clark American Legion Post, General John Williams D.A.R., Salem Women's Club, the Shushan and Rexleigh Covered Bridge Associations, Coon and Cat Club, Pistol Club and Knights of Columbus.

Salem NY, like its name, continues to be a peaceful community combining the friendliness of its citizens with the purity of its natural beauty. Year-round, tourists pass through Salem on historic Route 22 in search of seasonal pastimes. Those tourists who come to Salem return, having realized that they need search no longer for a more restful and scenic spot.

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