The Heart’s Delight Farm Heritage Exhibit is a permanent tribute to William and Alice Miner and the beautiful farm they developed on the Miner family homestead. The building of Heart’s Delight Farm began in 1903 and grew from a farmhouse and a couple of barns on 144 acres into a model farm of 300 structures situated on 15,000 acres. The farm utilized a scientific approach to agriculture on a vast scale, embracing hydroelectric power and technological advances to run an enterprise that employed 800 workers in its heyday. It shipped ham, sausages, eggs, and other produce to the best hotels and restaurants in New York City and Chicago.
The Exhibit not only portrays the development of Heart’s Delight Farm, but also chronicles William Miner’s youth and his career in the railroad industry. It shows innovations, such as hydroelectric power production for farm use and fields brought under cultivation by extensive use of drain tiles. The Exhibit also illustrates the extensive philanthropy of William and Alice Miner.
Visitors enjoy looking at the railroad gear and inventions patented by William Miner. They marvel at the 9’ x 12’ diorama depicting the buildings, animals and topography of Heart’s Delight Farm around 1910 and wonder at the scale model of the 46 room Heart’s Delight Cottage. Beautifully restored photographs of life and work at Heart’s Delight cover the walls of the three rooms that house the Exhibit in the Farm’s old Storehouse.
In the main exhibit, two 12-minute DVDs add to the story. The first offers a collage of old photographs and films that tells the story of the young man who worked on his uncle’s old homestead, went West to make his fortune in the railroad business, and returned with his beloved Alice to build his Shangri-La, Heart’s Delight Farm. The second DVD offers a collage of old pictures and films that depict the sights and sounds of life and work on Heart’s Delight Farm nearly a hundred years ago.
In the Miner institute: 100 Years and Growing Theater, visitors find our newest video, "Miner Institute: 100 Years and Growing." The DVD highlights the history and current state of North Country agriculture and the prominent role that Miner Institute continues to hold in the field.
The Coach House opened in the summer of 2007. A short DVD highlights some of the old vehicles used at Heart's Delight. "The Vehicles of Heart's Delight Farm" features many of the vehicles purchased by Mr. Miner and used on Heart's Delight Farm. The vehicles on display range from rugged horse-drawn buggies and wagons, to sleighs and carriages. The highlight of the vehicle exhibit is the “ International School Bus”, one of thirteen donated to the Chazy Central Rural School and maintained at Heart’s Delight Farm, courtesy of William H. Miner.
The Wayside Heritage Walk adjacent to the exhibit building offers a pleasant stroll through the gardens where ten panels display an abbreviated version of life at Heart’s Delight Farm. Both the Wayside Walk and the Exhibit are open to the public free of charge and are handicapped accessible. For more information or to arrange group tours, please contact Rachel Dutil at (518) 846-7121, ext. 115.