"Dover Stone Church; a magical rock formation complete with rushing stream, just a stone’s throw from Route 22. The DLC, working with multiple partners, helped to create the Stone Church Preserve."
Notes from the website: The “Stone Church” is an ancient cavern on the Stone Church Brook in Dover Plains hewn by time in the formation similar to a church’s cathedral stained glass window.
According to local legend, the site was a refuge for Pequot Sachem Sassacus and his warriors as they fled from the English Army in the 1600s.
In the 1800 and early 1900s, the Stone Church was a popular local attraction for New York City dwellers to visit and enjoy the recuperative fresh air and beauty of upstate New York.
When the privately-owned 58.5 acre property was offered for sale in 2002, the Town of Dover, the Dutchess Land Conservancy and the Friends of Dover Stone Church, collaborated to raise private and public funds to acquire the property.
Grant and match funds from the Dutchess County Open Space and Farmland Protection Program, the Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation and the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation were secured along with donations of numerous residents, businesses and area supporters to successfully complete the acquisition in 2004.
Future improvements are planned to develop nature and hiking trails for residents and visitors to further enjoy local wildlife and flora.