The individual biographies are original script from the Award Ceremony Programs, which were distributed at the time the awards were made.

To preserve the integrity and meaningfulness of the award, no editing has been made to the original script.

History Maker History Preserver

Sullivan County Historical Society History Preserver Award 2007


mgerryMaurice Gerry


                 A native of Ferndale, NY, Maurice attended the two room school house on what was called School House Hill, along with his brothers, Paul and Alan. A graduate of Liberty High School, Class of 1949, he served in the U.S. Navy before going to California in 1954.
                He managed to come home every fall for 32 years and as his parents Bill and Naomi grew older, he started to spend longer periods of time in his beloved Ferndale.
                He purchased his first house in 1981. It was the Ryan House on Ferndale-Loomis

Read more: Maurice Gerry

Sullivan County Historical Society History Preserver Award 2007

Paul Gerry

                Paul Gerry was born April 1, 1926 in New York City, the son of the late William and Naomi Gorowitz. He attended the Industrial School of the Arts in the City where he learned the many aspects of photography. During WWII he enlisted in the army and was awarded the Purple Heart for a wound received during the Battle of the Bulge.
                The Gorowitz family, which also included two younger brothers, Alan and Maurice, moved to Sullivan County and purchased an old homestead in Ferndale. After being discharged from service, Paul began his career as a photographer. He soon acquired an outstanding reputation and took photographs of the many famous comedians and entertainers who performed at the major Catskill Hotels. His most famous photograph, one which received worldwide distribution, was that of the wedding of the youthful Debbie Reynolds and Eddie Fisher at nearby Grossinger’s Hotel. His aerial photographs of the 1969 Woodstock Festival also received worldwide distribution. For thirty years Paul served as the official photographer for the New York State Police and his photographs of accidents and fires were used both by the local and metropolitan newspapers.

Read more: Paul Gerry

Sullivan County Historical Society History Preserver Award 2006


quinlan 1James Eldridge Quinlan


                “ ‘Quinlan’s History of Sullivan County’ – the magic words that always create a ripple of excitement at auctions and a flurry of spirited bidding. It was and continues to be a collector’s item. How fortunate we are that James Eldridge Quinlan took the troubled to assemble this material, the sources of which have almost all vanished with the passage of time.”
                Thus did Manville Wakefield, an outstanding county historian of the twentieth century, salute James Quinlan, his nineteenth century predecessor. In this brief quotation, Manville expressed the regret which afflicts all historians and genealogists investigating the history of Sullivan County prior to the Civil War: so many original documents have been lost. Fires, floods and perhaps a general carelessness as regards historical preservation were some of the factors at work. Given the limited number of original sources, one can appreciate how important it is to have a seven hundred page volume, published in 1873, which provides an overall view of the life of the county to that point in time.  

Read more: James Eldridge Quinlan

Sullivan County Historical Society History Maker Award 2005


Daniel Skinner

Lord High Admiral of the Delaware

When the pioneers first entered the lower Delaware valley, they found a land covered with Oak trees, other hardwoods, pines and in New Jersey, white cedar. A profitable business developed by constructing rafts and floating these logs down the Delaware to Philadelphia and other emerging settlements on the lower river. Not only were the timbers used to construct buildings, but they provided raw materials for a thriving shipbuilding industry. In time, however, the easily accessible stands of timber were used up and by the mid-1750's lumbermen had to turn their attention to more distant areas.


Read more: Daniel Skinner

Sullivan County Historical Society History Preserver Award 2004

ArchiveGangThe Archives Gang

  The History Preserver Award is given each year to a person who has done significant work in preserving Sullivan County History. By extension, that includes groups of people with a common bond fitting the criteria for the Award.
The Sullivan County Historical Society is an all volunteer organization and depends solely on the contributions of the time and effort of our volunteers to sustain the Society’s primary mission of preserving the history of our County.

Read more: The Archives Gang



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