All posts by Rich Calcaterra

I'm on the front end of 60 and maintain an active life. Including my interest in writing, I have an rabid appetite for cooking! Pun intended. My other purposes include a heavy dose of political interest, reading current events and doing my best to grasp the world as it continues to evolve. The great outdoors soothe both my mind and spirit while reminding me of Our Creator's mighty hand who has provided the blessings I've been privileged to enjoy.

Some Historical Reflection

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Bearpen Mountain hid her secrets well.

It was the territorial home of the Delaware Indians with some pioneers believing it was a sacred place for the Native Americans that could place emphasis on the foreboding yet beautiful land that it rose above.

It accepted those who came but punished those who sought to transform it and deny the spiritual respect it was due.

The Denver/Vega Valley along with Bearpen Mountain eventually became part of the Hardenbergh Patent.

 http://www.dcnyhistory.org/hardenburghpatentbobboyd.html 

“Purchased from the Indians for the sum of 60 pounds “the immense tract of land now known as the Hardenburgh Patent,” which includes all of what is now known as Sullivan Co. and parts of Delaware and Ulster Counties. On 20 Apr 1708, the patent was officially granted to Hardenburgh and six associates. By a secret understanding, and additional eighth-share was granted to the Surveyor-General of the Province, Augustus Graham, who could not legally have an interest in a land grant. Over the next 40 years, the make-up of the proprietors changed substantially due to deaths and sales. In 1749, the patent was divided into “Great Lots” apportioned by lot among the proprietors. These were further subdivided into tracts and divisions of various sizes.”  

The land here has changed little over the centuries other than roads being paved and other improvements of technology, it remains a secluded place where individualists live their lives often unhampered by the heaviness from the world outside.  

Newcomers who inhabit many of the same places once owned by farmers, loggers & reclusive thinkers typically become reformed and embracive of the lifestyle and hardness of this place making many of them members of an unspoken army. 

The hardiness and the hardness forged in places such as this make a formidable opponent to those seeking to inflict harm. Although the events within the pages of my novels are fictional, the sentiment and descriptions of the land & the spirit of the inhabitants are accurate. The enemies of our freedom, of our Republic, of our way of life should never discount it. Those from outside and those from within.

May GOD BLESS these places.

DANGER AT BEARPEN MOUNTAIN will be released mid April 2015 via Amazon.

Vega Valley School House

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The school still stands although it now is immersed in overgrowth and hidden within the shadows of 2nd growth trees. It later became the home of a reclusive gentleman who has since passed on and subsequently passes back into the deep arms of nature.

Imagine through the years how the small district school house served its purpose as dairy farmers sent their children to be educated here. It sits among the desolate rural mountain valley standing the test of time as worthy and durable as the people. It has weathered countless blizzards, deep wind driven snow, drought, torrential  winds along with summer heat.

Consider the events that occurred within the one room school house such as Christmas plays, Lessons, Childhood Quarrels, Learning to Read, Graduation. The walls hold the secrets of time long ago while the hand blown glass windows bare light to the soul of the room.

Yet it stands alone in the alcove of trees & brambles.

As I drive past it I’m reminded of resilience, steadfastness, age, usefulness, uselessness, loneliness and yet still an obvious presence more than the mere mortality or remembrance of people long ago who resided here.