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December 04, 2016
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Granddaughter responds to road name debate

The granddaughter of the couple named Rosenberg has added new information to the discussion about Segar and Rosenberg Road, and the request of some residents that it be shortened to Segar Road.

Adria Frede wrote a letter to Bethel Supervisor Dan Sturm explaining the history of the name. She wrote, “Actually, back in the years when my family resided in Bethel, only my grandparents’ end of this curved road was named Rosenberg Road. The other end, where the same road intersects again with County Road 141, was simply called Segar Road. Since the road in question does curve to connect with County Road 141 at two separate locations, there was no confusion; driving from Kauneonga Lake someone would first see the left-hand turn-off for Rosenberg Road, and then further down County Road 141 there would be a separate left-hand turn-off for Segar Road. In fact, there was a different official road sign at each end (erected by the town, not privately, as suggested in the newspaper article): one end said Rosenberg Road, and another (at the other intersection) said Segar Road. I even have an old New York State road map, which clearly shows Rosenberg Road.”

Frede explained that when her grandparents bought the property in the 1940s, they built up a successful resort business. She wrote, “In 1969, my grandparents sold the larger portion of their property, including the large house and the cottages, swimming pool, and other resort amenities they’d added over the years, to the owners of the Top Hill Bungalow Colony. It was then used by Top Hill for several years as an annex day-camp campus, and later resold to other owners who seem to have badly neglected the property over the years. (My sisters and I do drive by from time to time; the deterioration of that part of the property is very sad to see.)”

In the letter, Frede let it be known that she would be opposed to removing her grandparent’s name from the sign. She wrote, “The family of Irving and Rose Rosenberg have no objection to sharing the name of this road with my grandparents’ old friends, the Segar family. However, we would object most strenuously to all record of our grandparents’ names being erased. My grandparents were very involved in the life of the local community during the many years they lived there; it was their primary residence, even though they also maintained a small apartment in New York City, they voted and paid taxes as Bethel residents. We do still own property on the road that was originally named for them, and if we or our children choose to build another home there, it would be very sad indeed if the name of our grandparents was no longer honored as it had been for so many years.”

Bethel supervisor Dan Sturm said the he was hesitant to change the name before, and now that he has received the letter he is even more convinced that it should not be changed. He said that if every time new residents moved onto a road and wanted to change the name, before long the town’s history would be gone.

Frede provided several documents including a tax bill that bore the address Rosenberg Road. Sturm has forwarded the letter to the other board members.

Go to www.riverreporter.com to read the full letter.