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Parks Department Administrative Records, 1922-1969 (bulk 1924-1932)
Series 70
4.6 cubic ft. Arranged alphabetically. View box and folder list.

Correspondence, memos and other administrative records relating to property condemnations, park development, construction, parks and golf course use, personnel matters and other department matters. Includes some monthly and annual reports from certain divisions including budgets and financial data.

Parks Department Bronx River Parkway Records, 1924-1977, 1980-2003 (bulk late 1920s-early 1970s)
Series 387
5 cubic ft. Arranged alphabetically. View box and folder list.

Files maintained by the Westchester County Park Commission [and its successor the Westchester County Department of Parks, Recreation and Conservation] regarding matters affecting the Bronx River Parkway and Bronx River Reservation. A small portion of the collection (dating from 1980 to 2003 were added by representatives of the Westchester County Real Estate Office, during their use of the original files. The collection begins with a group of correspondence, in chronological order, filed under the “general” category; some of the earliest correspondence in the general group are from Jay Downer, chief engineer and secretary to the Bronx Parkway Commission.  More specific topics in the collection include files on specific rental house properties located on reservation property – often from their earliest tenants through their ultimate demolition in the 1960s; the White Plains Bus Terminal (located on reservation property); and the Westchester County Center (also located on reservation property – including documentation for the initial transfer of the land for the site to the County for $1). The bulk of the rest of the files also cover land use, land exchanges, easements, and rental matters. There are many copies of leases for land use located in the various files.

Parks Department Clippings, 1918, 1922-1936, 1970-1971, 1976-1989, 1991, 1997-2008
Series 98
16.3 cubic ft. Arranged chronologically and alphabetically in 2 subseries. View box and folder list.

Newspaper clippings and scrapbooks maintained by the Parks Department.  The first subseries in this collection is arranged chronologically and includes clippings from the 1920s and 1930s, and early 2000s, and well as eight large scrapbooks from the late 1970s through early 1980s.  The second subseries includes clippings arranged by subject primarily from the late 1990s through 2007.  This subseries includes clippings on specific Westchester County parks, as well as general topics such as golf in Westchester County and general press coverage of the Parks Department.  There is also extensive coverage of Playland amusement park in this subseries, from the early 1980s through 2008. 

Parks Department Commissioner’s Office Records, 1925-1989 (1970s-1980 bulk)
Series 375
Commissioner’s Office Records, 1925-1989 (1970s-1980 bulk)45.80 cubic ft. Arranged alphabetically. View box and folder list.

Correspondence, memos, reports, maps and plans, contracts, brochures, meeting minutes, budgets, and various other types of administrative records relating to the operations of the Westchester County Parks Department (and its predecessor, the Park Commission), as maintained in the office of the Commissioner over the course of six and a half decades. 

The earliest records, from the late 1920s through 1930s, document construction on some of Westchester’s parkways, particularly relating to storm drains, sewers and water mains. Other topics covered from the earliest days of the Park Commission include individual park and golf facilities as well as broad topics such as conservation, foot paths, real estate, and tennis.  Records relating to some of these topics, and others as well, continue through the entire time period covered by the collection. Other topics, such as capital projects, handicapped/disabled, Croton landfill, open space, and urban parks, only appear for later time periods, as do materials for more recently acquired park properties. 

Originally organized in three groupings (“prior years”, prior to 1981, and to/through 1988), the entire collection is now arranged into one alphabetical group.  As a result of its original order, however, there is occasional overlapping in dates between folders covering the same subjects. Every attempt has been made, however, to organize the box and folder list in the most appropriate alphabetical and then chronological order possible to aid research efforts.

Parks Department Consultant Reports, 1917, 1939, 1949, 1953-1974 (gaps)
Series 107
1 cubic ft. Arranged alphabetically. View box and folder list.

Reports commissioned by the Parks Department, Planning Department or the Department of Public Works and collected by the Parks Department. The series includes preliminary, interim and final reports, as well as instruction manuals and contract manuals relating to road, parkway, bridge and facilities construction and improvement, including the Westchester County Community College. The reports sometimes contain maps, charts and photographs.

Parks Department Contact Sheets / Prints Collection, ca. 1930s-2006 (bulk 1980s-2006)
Series 322
4 cubic feet. Arranged alphabetically. View box and folder list.

Prints and contact sheets (primarily contact sheets) documenting County parks and events sponsored by the Parks Department. 

Note: Most of the items in this collection are identified at the group level (for example a group of photographs taken at Westchester’s pool and beaches in the 1980s). Beyond that, however, there is no identification of specific individuals shown in the images. In addition, many of the items in this collection do not have exact dates.

Related Series: Series 323, Parks Department Slide Collection, ca. 1973-2007 (gaps); Series 384, Parks Department Miscellaneous Photograph Collection, ca. 1910-1940

Parks Department Contracts and Agreements, 1922-1972 (bulk 1922-1954, 1962-1968)
Series 280 
19.17 cubic ft. Arranged alphabetically. View box and folder list.

Contracts and agreements entered into by the Westchester County Park Commission (and a few entered into by the Bronx Parkway Commission) for the construction and maintenance of County parks and parkways, as well as the operation of the Park Commission itself. Subjects covered include the construction of bridges, water mains, sewers, storm drains, roadways, sidewalks, curbing, viaducts, and swimming pools; the creation of easements on County owned property for the construction of such items and for use of the land for parking lots or for play fields or other recreational activities; the conducting of surveys on park and parkway property; contracts and agreements to provide lighting for parks and parkways; concession agreements for food service or gasoline stations; and work on the electrical, plumbing, and heating systems for buildings in County parks. A few of the agreements and contracts relate to specific employees, such as the managerial contracts for Playland’s first director Frank W. Darling. For the most part, however, the items in this collection deal with the development and operations of the parks and parkways themselves. All of Westchester’s major parkways are covered by the collection.

Many of the folders, particularly for the agreements, include not only the agreement, but also correspondence and insurance policies obtained in connection with the work. In addition, many of the agreements and contracts include a map or plan as an attachment, showing the specific area of land to which it applied. To the extent to which it was available, information on specific map and parcel information has been included in the box and folder list for this collection. Many of those map sheets are included in the Archives’ collection of property maps filed with the County Clerk’s office, which are indexed online at the Westchester County Clerk's Web site.

Parks Department Correspondence, 1922-1943 (bulk 1922-1935)
Series 69
4.6 cubic ft. Arranged alphabetically. View box and folder list

Correspondence and memos to and from town officials, state and county officials and departments, civic associations, the Commission on Government and the public.

Related records: Series 88, Parks Department Correspondence and Studies, 1925-1975.

Parks Department Correspondence and Studies, 1925-1975
Series 88
2.5 cubic ft. Arranged alphabetically. View box and folder list.

Correspondence sent and received, the majority of which pertains to parks and parkways. Included are records related to the Bronx River Parkway land valuation study (1932) and the Barrett Study (1956) which led to the consolidation of the Park Commission and the Recreation Commission into the present-day Department of Parks, Recreation and Conservation.

Related records: Series 69, Parks Department Correspondence, 1922-1943 (bulk 1922-1935).

Parks Department Director of Management Planning and Property Records, 1951, 1966-1989 (bulk mid-1970s-early 1980s)
Series 383
7.75 cubic ft. Arranged alphabetically in 13 subseries. View box and folder list.

Files maintained by/for Director of Management Planning and Property for the Westchester County Parks Department, John Yoegel. Includes internal county correspondence and memoranda and well as with members of the public, municipal officials and legal representatives of property owners regarding variety of issues dealing with county land, including land ownership questions, encroachment issues, maintenance issues, permits and licenses for use, ownership transfer, and residual properties. Handwritten notes, phone message slips, charts, reports, maps and plans are also include in the collection. There are also two subseries with minutes and background materials for meetings of the County’s Real Estate Committee (1976-1985 gaps) and the County’s Parks, Recreation and Conservation Board (1974-1984 gaps?). These meetings often discuss topics covered by folders located elsewhere in the collection.

Note: the records in this collection were in a fair amount of disarray when received at the Archives. To the extent possible, duplicates were weeded during processing, but no attempts were made to put the papers in each folder in chronological order or otherwise reorder them. Files names were taken from the original folders, but elaborated on when necessary to make the contents clearer. The 13 subseries in the collection are based on the original filing schema of the records; see box and folder list for specific subseries titles.

Related records: Series 93, Parks, Recreation and Conservation Board Minutes, 1962-1978

Parks Department Historic Facts File, c.1850-1990 (bulk 1920s-1930s) 
Series 50
1 cubic ft. Arranged alphabetically. View box and folder list.

Collection of note cards, typewritten pages and newspaper clippings with statistical facts and background information regarding the creation and development of the Westchester County parks and parkways, primarily in the 1920s and 1930s.  Also includes information on Westchester County’s assessed values, budgets and population as they related to the creation of county parkland and parkways, along with random facts such as the number of registered vehicles in the county (in 1929) and the highest elevation points in the county. In addition, this series contains two reference notebooks created at the end of the 20th century – both of which contain fact sheets about properties owned by the Parks Department, such as acreage, acquisition information, history of the development of the properties, etc.

Parks Department Map Index, c.1925-1932
Series 99
Less than 1 cubic ft. Arranged alphabetically. Certain records indexed by this series may not be found in the Archives.

Index to maps which were normally filed in the County Clerk's office by the Westchester County Park Commission.

Parks Department Marketing/Public Relations Subject Files, 1967-2005 (bulk 1980s-1990s)
Series 328 
5.25 cubic ft. Arranged alphabetically. View box and folder list.

Brochures, press releases, news clippings, brochures, flyers, and programs make up the bulk of this collection, along with some press packets, correspondence, mailing lists / invitee lists, contracts, licensee agreements, fact sheets, RFPs, and planning committee meeting minutes for events and activities.   Several years of press releases are available on topics such as County golf courses, nature centers, Muscoot Farm, Lasdon Park, Playland, programs for senior citizens, Bike and Skate Sundays, Washington’s Headquarters, and Parks Department activities in general.  Other Parks-sponsored activities covered by this collection include festivals such as the Children’s Holiday Festival, Festival of Trees, Just for Fun Festivals, Westchester Arts Festival, and Winter Fun Festival; sponsored walks and marathons; entertainers who have performed in Westchester; and extensive information about the Westchester County Center and its re-opening in the late 1980s.

Parks Department Ordinances, 1926-1962
Series 120
Less than 1 cubic ft. Arranged chronologically. View box and folder list.

County legislation concerning the Parks Department.

Parks Department Oversized Materials Collection, c.1896-1962 (gaps)
Series 314
54 items. Unarranged. View box and folder list.

Oversized materials originally included as attachments, enclosures, or otherwise part of the collections of records of the Westchester County Department of Parks, Recreation and Conservation (and its predecessors) held by the Westchester County Archives, as well as oversized materials obtained directly from the Parks Department itself.   This collection primarily includes maps of Westchester County and its municipalities, some with markings relating to specific land acquisitions, and also includes some blueprints and plans for the development of local park land.  Also included are some maps covering areas beyond Westchester County, primarily the greater New York metropolitan region and their parklands.

Parks Department, Programs and Services Division Reports, 1951-1978
Series 126
4 cubic ft. Arranged chronologically. View box and folder list.

Brochures, advertisements and unpublished annual and monthly reports of the Division of Programs and Services of the Parks Department. Includes statistics about park use, income and expenses data, and other information about activities at various parks throughout the County. Also included are some annual reports of activities at the County Center.

Related records: Series 97, Recreation Commission Annual Reports, 1925-1961 (gaps).

Parks Department Property Records, 1923-1965 (bulk 1923-1939)
Series 149
5.5 cubic ft. Arranged alphabetically. View box and folder list.

Correspondence, memos, reports, brochures and related records concerning the acquisition and development of park lands and the construction of County buildings.

Related records: Series 116, Park Acquisitions, 1936.

Parks Department Road Contracts, 1934, 1959, 1967-1975
Series 113
1.5 cubic ft. Arranged alphabetically. View box and folder list.

Blueprints, specifications and contracts for road improvements.

Parks Department Slide Collection, ca. 1973-2007 (gaps)
Series 323
11 cubic feet. Arranged alphabetically. View box and folder list.

Slides documenting County parks and events sponsored by the Parks Department.

Note: Most of the items in this collection are identified at the group level (for example two folders of slides taken at Bike / Skate Sundays in the 1990s). Beyond that, however, there is no identification of specific individuals shown in the images. In addition, many of the items in this collection do not have exact dates.

Related Series: Series 322, Parks Department Contact Sheets / Prints Collection, ca. 1930s-2006 (bulk 1980s-2006); Series 384, Parks Department Miscellaneous Photograph Collection, ca. 1910-1940

Parks Department State and County Road Records, 1919-1965
Series 114
2 cubic ft. Arranged alpha-numerically. View box and folder list.

Correspondence, maps and blueprints related to State- and County-owned highways in Westchester County. Includes information on some New York City rights-of-way.

Parks Department State and National Matters, 1922-1941 (bulk 1922-1935)
Series 72
5 cubic ft. Arranged alphabetically. View box and folder list.

Correspondence, minutes, memos and other materials related to the National Conference on State Parks, the New York State Planning Board, the Regional Plan of New York and Environs, the New York State Council on Parks, New York State legislation and various communications with the federal government.

Parks Department Statistical Ledgers, 1962, 1964
Series 353
4 folders. Arranged by facility by year. 

Ledger sheets with two years worth of raw statistics on attendance, fees, and revenues from County golf courses, parks, and County Center.

Parks, Recreation and Conservation Biodiversity Studies, 1977-2010 (bulk 1990s)
Series 347
2.33 cubic ft. Arranged alphabetically. View box and folder list.

Studies, inventories, surveys, and reports on animal, birds, flowering plants, invertebrates, and other species that inhabit the parks, reservations, preserves, nature centers and historic sites of Westchester County. Staff members of the Conservation Division maintained, created or collected these documents on various biodiversity and conservation topics. Items from joint initiatives and projects with other county departments, the Audubon Society, New York State, and the state of Connecticut are also included in this collection.  These materials document preservation and conservation efforts to create biodiversity reserves or to identify environmental issues such as endangered species and the Clean Water Act. Ten research papers on the Marshland Conservancy produced by college undergraduates are examples of outreach programs the County Parks Department encouraged. Most of these materials were contributed to the Archives by the former Deputy Commissioner for Conservation at the Parks Department, Dr. Jack Robbins. 

Parks, Recreation and Conservation Board Agenda, 1962-1978 (gaps)
Series 146
Less than 1 cubic ft. Arranged chronologically.

Agenda of the meetings of the Board.

Related records: Series 93, Parks, Recreation and Conservation Board Minutes, 1962-1965.

Parks, Recreation and Conservation Board Minutes, 1962-1978
Series 93
Less than 1 cubic ft. Arranged chronologically.

Official minutes of the Board which was formed in 1962 to take up and expand upon the activities of the Westchester County Park Commission and the Westchester County Recreation Commission.

Continues: Series 91

Related records: Series 146, Parks, Recreation and Conservation Board Agenda, 1962-1978 (gaps). See also: Series 383, Parks Department Director of Management Planning and Property Records for Board meeting minutes for 1974-1984 (gaps?)