Library/Local History


Welcome to the Sarah Hull Hallock Free Library, the little library with the big heart, founded in 1886 by Dorcas Hull in honor of her sister, Sarah.

Our library’s namesake was a force for change in her lifetime and community:  Quaker, abolitionist and suffragist.


Sepia Photo of Sarah Hull Hallock
Colorful “Aunt Sarah” was a Quaker who was instrumental in the Hudson Valley in the abolitionist and women’s suffrage movements.  “The Knoll,” the boarding house that Sarah ran with her sister, Dorcas Hull, became a beacon for intellectuals and activists – boasting such luminaries as George Innes, Susan B. Anthony, Ernestine L. Rose, and Frederick Douglas as guests.

After Sarah’s death, Dorcas began the first library collection at The Knoll, where thinkers and searchers continued to congregate – an appropriate origin story for our modern day Milton Library.


Headstone of Sarah Hull Hallock

Quaker Cemetery

Willow Tree Road, Milton

Sarah Hull Hallock was born in Stanford on July 18, 1813 to Edward Hull and Bathsheba Gifford Hull.  The family lived  in what is now Millbrook in Dutchess County and was part of the Nine Partners Quaker Meeting House membership.

Sarah’s husband, Edward Hull, was much older than she.  He was born in 1788 in Milton, and when he died in 1851, Edward was buried next to his first wife, Anna Marie (Sherman) Hallock in the same cemetery where Sarah would later lie.


A renowned local painter, James Scott was a founding member of Elverhoj (the hill of the elves) art colony on the Hudson River, near the hamlet of Milton. His work at Elverhoj was interrupted by a tour of duty during World War I, and upon his return to Milton, Scott changed his focus from portraits to landscapes, such as these fine examples we are happy to have at SHHFL.

"Gathering Maple Sap" by James Scott. Oil paint depicting workers bring wood and buckets into a smokehouse.

James Scott 1889-1967 “Gathering Maple Sap” Oil Panting
This work of art was part of a special exhibition at the Salmagundi Club in Greenwich Village (New York City) in 1930.

"Untitled" by James Scott. Oil painting depicting boats on a river with a bridge and Mountains in the background.

James Scott 1889-1967 “Untitled” Oil Panting
This large 58-1/8 inch by 36-5/8 inch canvas is untitled, but could well be the view of the Hudson River from Elverhoj.

Read more about Elverhoj:

Search the Mid-Hudson Library System catalog, and choose the “New York Digital Collection” facet for more pictures, like this one of Elverhoj.


Our Farming Heritage

Painting of a field of flowers

Landscapes painted by
(“Teddy Dietz”)
Donated by Annette Smith daughter-in-law of Adeline Sears Smith

On display at

The Sarah Hull Hallock Free Library

Painting of white house with a single large tree.
Painting of Sunset.
Painting of fields with clouds
Painting of fields with clouds. Rays of sun breaking through the clouds.
Painting of two farm building overlooking a river.
Painting of building behind a large green tree.
Paint of a house on a hill with fields in the foreground.

M. Hancock, “Teddy Dietz, ” was a dear friend of Adeline Sears Smith and painted a number of pictures of views from the Sears Farm. Created in the ’20s and early ’30s, the paintings of Marlboro and Hudson Valley scenes on canvas board depict local buildings and beauty spots. The Sears Farms was located between Rt. 9W and the Hudson River at the top of Rosoff’s Hill.

Paint of cabin surrounded by trees with water and mountains in the background.
Painting of a dirt road with a large white cloud above.
Painting of fields with cloudy sky.