Clermont State Historic Site
Clermont is an anchor in the Hudson River National Landmark District, a twenty-mile stretch of riverfront land in northern Dutchess and southern Columbia counties.
Clermont was designated a United States National Historic Landmark in 1973. Clermont is also an anchor in the Hudson River National Landmark District (designated in 1990), a twenty-mile stretch of riverfront land in northern Dutchess and southern Columbia counties Restored to its early twentieth-century appearance, Clermont's furnishings and airy pastoral landscapes and vistas reflect the continuum of a unique and vanishing way of life along the Hudson River.
The name Clermont derives from "clear mountain" in French and was inspired by the view of the Catskill Mountains across the Hudson River from the estate.
The estate was established by Robert Livingston following the death of his father, the first Lord of Livingston Manor, in 1728; while most of the manor was inherited by the eldest son Philip Livingston, 13,000 acres in the southwest corner, later named Clermont, was willed to Robert.
In October 1777, British Major General John Vaughan, who led a raiding party up the Hudson River, came to Clermont and burned Livingston's home because of his prominent role in the American Revolution. Margaret Beekman Livingston rebuilt the family home between 1779 and 1782. Her son Robert R. Livingston became the estate's most prominent resident, serving as a member of the committee that drafted the Declaration of Independence, Secretary of Foreign Affairs, and negotiator of the Louisiana Purchase.
In 1807, Livingstone was a partner with Robert Fulton, creating the first commercially successful steamboat on the Hudson river, the North River Steamboat (later known as the Clermont), which stopped at the house on its inaugural trip.
The house is now a New York State Historic Site and was designated a United States National Historic Landmark in 1972. It is a contributing property to another National Historic Landmark, the Hudson River Historic District.