Take a Look Inside… Again!

Last year, we shared some interior views of historic buildings here in Poughkeepsie from our collection. We’re often asked if we have interior photos of historic structures, and for the most part, the answer is no. It is rare for an interior photo to be taken back then unless it was deemed worthy enough to be a postcard or placed in a family photo album. In last year’s blog post, we asked you to consider how many photos you have of the inside of your own home. We certainly take more pictures than 100 or even 50 years ago, but generally, the only time we try to get good interior views of our homes or buildings is when we are trying to sell them (i.e. Zillow, Trulia, and so forth). The few interior images we have in our collection are fun to see, not only because they are rare but because they show how things have changed over a century. Let’s take a look at some different ones.

The Riverview Military Academy was a school for boys formed by Mr. Otis Bisbee in 1867. Bisbee had previously worked as an educator for the Poughkeepsie Collegiate School, and when that institution closed, he created one of his own. Once located on Lincoln Avenue, where the modern-day soccer fields currently sit. The school operated until 1921, and all remnants of the buildings were torn down by 1965. The first few images on the right show the interior of the boys dorm rooms, and a classroom filled with desks. Since the boys lived on campus throughout their education, you can see the rooms filled with personal possessions and decorations.

Charles Luckey started out by working for other department stores before creating his own. What became known as Luckey, Platt and Company was Poughkeepsie’s very own grand department store. From 1866 until the store closed in 1981, anyone who grew up in and around the City of Poughkeepsie shopped at Luckey Platt’s massive location at 332 Main Street (the building is still around today). The store sold everything from clothing, to furniture, to household goods. The images on the right show the main floor of Luckey Platt, as well as the rear section of the furniture department that showcased fine China and dining accessories.

Thomas Barrett, Jr. was a local artist who was very active in the early 20th century and formed the Dutchess County Arts Association. The Barrett family lived at 55 Noxon Street for almost a century, and the beautiful Greek Revival-style home inspired much of Barrett’s work. His father and mother, Thomas Sr. and Katherine, had filled the first two floors with antiques and art, while the third floor housed his studio. The last family member to live in the home was Thomas’ sister Elizabeth, who died in the house in 1974. The images on the right show the main entrance hall, the living room, and a small glimpse of the artist’s studio.


Riverview Military Academy collection – LH – 373 R

Poughkeepsie Business Firms – Luckey Platt Collection – LH 974.733 P

Thomas Barrett Collection


Riverview-01 – Interior view of the boy’s dorms at Riverview Military Academy. LH Collections

Riverview-02 – Interior view of the boy’s dorms at Riverview Military Academy. LH Collections

Riverview-03 – Interior view of the classroom as Riverview Military Academy. LH Collections

Insidestore – Interior view of the main floor at Luckey Platts Department Store. LH Collections

Chinadept – Interior view of the China department at Luckey Platts Department Store. LH Collections

TWB034 – Interior view of the entry hall at #55 Noxon Street. LH Collections

TWB031 – Interior view of the living room at #55 Noxon Street. LH Collections

TWB004 – Interior view of the studio at #55 Noxon Street. LH Collections