Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation

Senate House State Historic Site

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296 Fair Street
Kingston, NY 12401
Latitude 41.935143
Longitude -74.018608

Amidst the turmoil of a British military invasion in the fall of 1777, the elected representatives of rebellious New Yorkers met in Kingston to form a new state government. While convened in Kingston in September and October, New York's first Senate met in the simple stone house of merchant Abraham Van Gaasbeek.

In 1887, to recognize Senate House's role in the formation of New York State, New York State acquired the property, which quickly became a vital community museum. A two-story Museum Building was constructed in 1927 to house and display the site's burgeoning collection. Among its treasures are: major art works by John Vanderlyn and other members of the Vanderlyn family of Kingston. The museum also includes the site's popular new exhibit; "Kingston Stockade: New Netherlands' Third City," discussing Kingston's early history.

Hours of Operation

  • Group tours are offered year-round, but must be scheduled in advance.

    Site grounds are open from dawn to dusk.
  • April 15 through October 31
    Wednesday-Saturday 10 a.m.-5 p.m and Sunday 1-5 p.m.

    Site is open year-round by appointment.

Fees & Rates

Most New York State Parks charge a vehicle use fee to enter the facility. Fees vary by location and season. A list of entry fees and other park use fees is available below. For fees not listed or to verify information, please contact the park directly.

The easy-to-use Empire Pass card is $80- and your key to all-season enjoyment with unlimited day-use entry at most facilities operated by State Parks and the State Dept. of Environmental Conservation including forests, beaches, trails and more. Purchase online or contact your favorite park for more information. Learn more about our Admission Programs including the Empire Pass.

  • Tour of Senate House and Museum Admission
  • Adult - $7
    Sr (62+) - $5
    12 & under - free
    Group Tours - $5 per person
    School Program - $5 per person

Sat 27 Jul
Saturday Special: “What is it?”
Saturday, July 27, 2024 01:00 PM - 03:00 PM
Senate House State Historic Site
Stop by Senate House on Saturday July 27th from 1-3PM as we show off a number of reproductions of 18th century objects. For this drop-in activity, visitors will have the opportunity to handle each object and guess what they are and what they might have been used for. This activity is free of charge, is rain or shine, and can be found on the grounds at our museum building. We hope to see you then!
Sat 03 Aug
Bearing Witness: Exploring the Legacy of Enslavement in Ulster County
Saturday, August 3, 2024 01:00 PM - 03:00 PM
Senate House State Historic Site
On Saturday, August 3rd at 1:00pm, Senate House will be hosting a free presentation and book signing for Bearing Witness: Exploring the Legacy of Enslavement in Ulster County in the site's museum building.

Join in for an afternoon with the authors Susan Stessin-Cohn, Philip White, and Ashley Biagini as they share the new website Bearing Witness, developed in connection with the Ulster County Truth and Reconciliation Commission. During their presentation, they will reveal stories of a handful of notable Black residents of Ulster County, from the early days of enslavement under the Dutch and English, to the blossoming of free Black culture in the era following New York's legal abolition of slavery in 1827. Copies of the authors' book Bearing Witness will be available for purchase and signature.

While the talk is free to attend, tours of Senate House and access to the museum's exhibit will also be available for $7.00 for adults, $5.00 for seniors, with children ages 12 and under admitted free. 
Sun 29 Sep
18th Century Autumnfest
Sunday, September 29, 2024 11:00 AM - 04:00 PM
Senate House State Historic Site

Experience some key autumn activities from the 18th century and enjoy the season! There will be demonstrations of blacksmithing, meat smoking, candle dipping, pressing apples, and more. There will also be live performances of juggling, fire spitting, and unicycling!
Sat 19 Oct
The Burning of Kingston
Saturday, October 19, 2024
Senate House State Historic Site

Stop by Senate House on Saturday during the weekend-long, community-wide commemoration of the burning of Kingston. That day site will be hosting reenactors, a talk, tours, and more. For full event program and more information as it becomes available, please visit 

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Amenities Information

  • Amenities
  • Picnic Area (Accessible)
  • Re-enactments (Accessible)
  • Tours
  • Visitor Center