Tags: US State Facts | New York History | Empire State | Hudson River | Woodstock

New York History: 8 Events That Shaped the State

Image: New York History: 8 Events That Shaped the State
Aerial view of the tip of Manhattan, New York, 1931. (wikimedia/commons)

By    |   Friday, 27 Feb 2015 05:16 PM

The Empire State has been a center of trade and influence throughout the entire world. New York Harbor, the Hudson River, the Atlantic Ocean and Lake Erie have had a significant impact on New York history.

These eight events helped to shape the state of New York since Europeans arrived:

1. The establishment of New York State had its beginnings with Dutch settlers who colonized an island that was to become Manhattan in 1624. They called it New Amsterdam, but the English renamed it New York after taking over the area in1664, according to History.com.

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2. New York was one of the 13 original colonies and became a state in 1788 when the U.S. Constitution was ratified. New York City was the nation's first capital. George Washington was inaugurated in 1789 as the first U.S. president at the city’s Federal Hall on Wall Street.

3. The New York Post dates back to 1801 when it was known as the New York Evening Post, established by Alexander Hamilton, the nation's first secretary of the treasury. Hamilton, an author of the Federalist papers, started the publication as a Federalist newspaper to highlight the principles of the U.S. Constitution, according to History.com.

4. The Erie Canal, one of the most ambitious waterway projects and stretching from Albany to Buffalo, was completed in 1825. Originally designed for commercial traffic to improve development in the western part of the state, it is also used by recreational boaters along the 338 miles that link the Hudson River to the Great Lakes.

5. New York abolished slavery in 1827 and many New Yorkers joined a growing antislavery movement. However, New York City was the scene of three days of ruthless rioting in 1863 by anti-draft activists and angry crowds upset with the Civil War. They lynched blacks and burned the homes of abolitionists.

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6. "Tammany Hall," an anti-Federalist organization, dominated politics with corruption and bribery in New York City and surrounding areas between 1857 and 1871 when its political influence was exposed by the press. Constitutional changes were made when it was broken up, including the elimination of laws that required blacks to own property in order to vote.

7. The Statue of Liberty, a gift from France, was erected in 1886 in New York Harbor and stood as a welcoming symbol to millions of immigrants who arrived in the country. More than 12 million immigrants viewed the statue and passed through Ellis Island, an immigration facility, between 1892 and 1954. The statue was renovated in time for its centennial celebration in 1986.

8. New York history also includes the pop culture. The town of Bethel hosted the 1969 Woodstock Music and Art Fair, also just known as Woodstock, which became one of the most renowned music festivals ever held. A local farmer provided access to his land when nearby towns, including Woodstock, refused to grant permission for the fest. Some 400,000 people attended the "Three Days of Peace and Music" that included popular musical acts of the time.

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The Empire State has been a center of trade and influence throughout the entire world. New York Harbor, the Hudson River, the Atlantic Ocean and Lake Erie have had a significant impact on New York history.
New York History, Empire State, Hudson River, Woodstock
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2015-16-27
Friday, 27 Feb 2015 05:16 PM
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