Old Steamboat Days On The Hudson River – David Lear Buckman
This is a short book that was originally called forth by a double anniversary, the centennial of the Fulton steamboat and the three hundredth anniversary of Hudson’s great discovery. The author has had the beneﬁt of a long experience with the places which he describes, and his family has enjoyed unusual advantages through personal acquaintance with many of the river captains. After describing Fulton and his great invention, the author passes on to the development of the river navigation. He recounts the gradual evolution from the primitive crafts of the early nineteenth century to the palatial steamers of the present. He gives miscellaneous data relating to the monopoly of trafﬁc, to disasters of historic importance; he includes a few anecdotes, and concludes his text with a brief narrative of Hudson’s voyage and the projected memorials.
Old Steamboat Days On The Hudson River.
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Basics on the Hudson River (from Wikipedia):
The Hudson River is a 315-mile (507 km) river that flows from north to south primarily through eastern New York in the United States. The river originates in the Adirondack Mountains of Upstate New York, flows southward through the Hudson Valley, and eventually drains into the Atlantic Ocean at New York Harbor, between New York City and Jersey City. The river serves as a political boundary between the states of New Jersey and New York at its southern end. Further north, it marks local boundaries between several New York counties. The lower half of the river is a tidal estuary, deeper than the body of water into which it flows, occupying the Hudson Fjord, an inlet which formed during the most recent period of North American glaciation, estimated at 26,000 to 13,300 years ago. Tidal waters influence the Hudson’s flow from as far north as the city of Troy.
The river is named after Henry Hudson, an Englishman sailing for the Dutch East India Company, who explored it in 1609, and after whom Hudson Bay in Canada is also named. It had previously been observed by Italian explorer Giovanni da Verrazzano sailing for King Francis I of France in 1524, as he became the first European known to have entered the Upper New York Bay, but he considered the river to be an estuary. The Dutch called the river the North River – with the Delaware River called the South River – and it formed the spine of the Dutch colony of New Netherland. Settlements of the colony clustered around the Hudson, and its strategic importance as the gateway to the American interior led to years of competition between the English and the Dutch over control of the river and colony.
During the eighteenth century, the river valley and its inhabitants were the subject and inspiration of Washington Irving, the first internationally acclaimed American author. In the nineteenth century, the area inspired the Hudson River School of landscape painting, an American pastoral style, as well as the concepts of environmentalism and wilderness. The Hudson was also the eastern outlet for the Erie Canal, which, when completed in 1825, became an important transportation artery for the early-19th-century United States.
(The text of the last section was taken from a Wikipedia entry and is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License.)
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