"History vs. the Bulldozer" from Newsday:
On a wooded river bluff in Rhinecliff, N.Y., a Romanesque castle called Wyndclyffe stands boarded up, its roof partly caved in. Surrounded by comparably modest getaways of recent vintage, its once-ample grounds have shrunk to a two-acre lot. This crumbling castle, built in 1853 for an aunt of Gilded Age chronicler Edith Wharton - the spinster Elizabeth Schermerhorn Jones - it is said to have been the origin of the expression, "keeping up with the Joneses," because, when it was built, the neighbors rushed to gussy up their own millionaire manors.
Wyndclyffe is among the few dozen imperiled monuments profiled in "Hudson Valley Ruins," by Thomas Rinaldi and Robert J. Yasinsac (University Press of New England, 356 pp., $35).
It takes a middle road between the extravagant picture-book of erstwhile luxury estates and the scholarly architectural catalog, giving overviews of endangered sites by region, and telling in detail the life stories of several properties in each area.