POUND RIDGE, N.Y. – The sleepy little up-county town known as Pound Ridge has some interesting facts you may not know:
- Benny Goodman wrote a song about it. Benny Goodman, the clarinetist, bandleader and jazz musician known as “the King of Swing” lived in Pound Ridge and wrote a song about it. He was one of the first bandleaders to integrate his band, when he hired pianist Teddy Wilson. Goodman is buried in Long Ridge Cemetery on Long Ridge Road.
- Pound Ridge is known for its shoes. Shoe-making was a widespread cottage industry in Pound Ridge during the early 1800s. The shoes were made to fit either foot and cost about $1.20 a pair. The Scofield family, who had a factory on Route 124, were famous for their Lancaster clogs, a cobbling skill handed down from their Lancastrian English ancestors.
- "Marathon Man" was filmed in Pound Ridge. "Marathon Man," the 1976 movie starring Dustin Hoffman, Roy Scheider and Lawrence Olivier was partly filmed at the Pound Ridge Reservation.
- Phone numbers were four digits. As late as the 1980s residents of Pound Ridge were still dialing only four numbers to call within the town and New Canaan was considered a local call. Houses had no street numbers. The postman knew where everyone lived.
- Emily Shaw's has a long history. Emily Shaw’s Inn, built as a residence in 1833 and currently under reconstruction for a new restaurateur, was a boarding house known as Dexter Lodge. Hiram Halle eventually took it over, renovated it from 1936 to 1939, and rented it to Emily Shaw, to be run as a inn and restaurant to accommodate his visiting friends. Shaw’s son, Jack, ran the restaurant until his retirement, about 1980.
- "Jungle 2 Jungle" was filmed in Pound Ridge. "Jungle 2 Jungle," the 1997 film starring Tim Allen, Martin Short and JoBeth Williams, was partly filmed in Pound Ridge.
- Tarleton was here. British Lt. Col. Banastre Tarleton attacked a Pound Ridge home in 1779 in an attempt to capture American patriot Ebenezer Lockwood. The Americans retreated, the British pursued but eventually gave up. They set fire to a few Pound Ridge buildings, including the Presbyterian Church and Lockwood’s house.
The sources for these facts include the Town of Pound Ridge website, the Westchester Historical Society website, "Westchester County: A Pictorial History" by Susan Cochran Swanson and Elizabeth Green Fuller and The Internet Movie Database.
Are there little known facts about Pound Ridge you’d like to share with our readers? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.