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New York Harbor, part of the Port of New York and New Jersey,is at the mouth of the Hudson River where it empties into New York Bay and into the Atlantic Ocean at the East Coast of the United States. It is one of the largest natural harbors in the world. Although the United States Board on Geographic Names does not use the term, New York Harbor has important historical, governmental, commercial, and ecological usages.
The Port of New York and New Jersey is the port district of the New York-Newark metropolitan area, encompassing the region within approximately a 25-mile (40 km) radius of the Statue of Liberty National Monument. It includes the system of navigable waterways in the New York–New Jersey Harbor Estuary, which runs along 650 miles (1,050 km) of shoreline in the vicinity of New York City and northeastern New Jersey, as well as the region's airports and supporting rail and roadway distribution networks. Considered one of the largest natural harbors in the world, the port is by tonnage the third largest in the United States and the busiest on the East Coast.
North River is an alternative name for the southernmost portion of the Hudson River in the vicinity of New York City and northeastern New Jersey in the United States. The entire watercourse was known as the North River by the Dutch in the early seventeenth century; the term fell out of general use for most of the river's 300+ mile course during the early 1900s. However the name remains in very limited use as an artifact among history-inclined local mariners and others and on some nautical charts and maps. The term is also used for infrastructure on and under the river, such as the North River piers, North River Tunnels, and the North River Wastewater Treatment Plant.
New York Bay is the collective term for the marine areas surrounding the river mouth of the Hudson River into the Atlantic Ocean, in New Jersey and New York City.
The original population of the 16th century New York Harbor, the Lenape, used the waterways for fishing and travel. In 1524 Giovanni da Verrazzano anchored in what is now called The Narrows, the strait between Staten Island and Long Island that connects the Upper and Lower New York Bay, where he received a canoe party of Lenape. A party of his sailors may have taken on fresh water at a spring called "the watering place" on Staten Island—a monument stands in a tiny park on the corner of Bay Street and Victory Boulevard at the approximate spot—but Verrazzano's descriptions of the geography of the area are a bit ambiguous. It is fairly firmly held by historians that his ship anchored at the approximate location where the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge touches down in Brooklyn today. He also observed what he believed to be a large freshwater lake to the north (apparently Upper New York Bay). He apparently did not travel north to observe the existence of the Hudson River. In 1609 Henry Hudson entered the Harbor and explored a stretch of the river that now bears his name. His journey prompted others to explore the region and engage in trade with the local population.
The Lenape, also called the Leni Lenape, Lenni Lenape and Delaware people, are an indigenous people of the Northeastern Woodlands, who live in Canada and the United States. Their historical territory included present-day New Jersey and eastern Pennsylvania along the Delaware River watershed, New York City, western Long Island, and the Lower Hudson Valley. Today, Lenape people belong to the Delaware Nation and Delaware Tribe of Indians in Oklahoma; the Stockbridge-Munsee Community in Wisconsin; and the Munsee-Delaware Nation, Moravian of the Thames First Nation, and Delaware of Six Nations in Ontario.
Giovanni da Verrazzano was an Italian explorer of North America, in the service of King Francis I of France.
The Narrows is the tidal strait separating the boroughs of Staten Island and Brooklyn in New York City. It connects the Upper New York Bay and Lower New York Bay and forms the principal channel by which the Hudson River empties into the Atlantic Ocean. It has long been considered to be the maritime "gateway" to New York City and historically has been one of the most important entrances into the harbors of the Port of New York and New Jersey.
In 1624 the first permanent European settlement was started on Governors Island, and eight years later in Brooklyn; soon these were connected by ferry operation.The colonial Dutch Director-General of New Netherland, Peter Stuyvesant, ordered construction of the first wharf on the Manhattan bank of the lower East River sheltered from winds and ice, which was completed late in 1648 and called Schreyers Hook Dock (near what is now Pearl and Broad Streets). This prepared New York as a leading port for the British colonies and then within the newly independent United States.
Governors Island is a 172-acre (70 ha) island in New York Harbor, within the borough of Manhattan in New York City. It is located approximately 800 yards (732 m) south of Manhattan island, and is separated from Brooklyn to the east by the 400-yard-wide (370 m) Buttermilk Channel. The National Park Service administers a small portion of the north of the island as the Governors Island National Monument, including two former military fortifications named Fort Jay and Castle Williams, while the Trust for Governors Island operates the remaining 150 acres (61 ha), including 52 historic buildings, as a public park. Much of the island is built on artificial turf, added in the 1900s with the dumping of 103 acres (42 ha) of fill to the south of the original island.
New Netherland was a 17th-century colony of the Dutch Republic that was located on the east coast of America. The claimed territories extended from the Delmarva Peninsula to southwestern Cape Cod, while the more limited settled areas are now part of New York, New Jersey, Delaware, and Connecticut, with small outposts in Pennsylvania and Rhode Island.
Peter Stuyvesant ; in Dutch also Pieter and Petrus Stuyvesant); (1592–1672) served as the last Dutch director-general of the colony of New Netherland from 1647 until it was ceded provisionally to the English in 1664, after which it was renamed New York. He was a major figure in the early history of New York City and his name has been given to various landmarks and points of interest throughout the city.
In 1686, the British colonial officials gave the municipality control over the waterfront.
In 1808, Lieutenant Thomas Gedney of the United States Coast Survey discovered a new, deeper channel through The Narrows into New York Harbor. Previously, the passage was complex and shallow enough that loaded ships would wait outside the harbor until high tide, to avoid running into the huge sandbar, which was interrupted in a number of places by channels of fairly shallow depth: 21 feet (6.4 m) at low tide and 33 feet (10 m) at high tide. Because of the difficulty of the navigation required, since 1694, New York had required all ships to be guided into the harbor by an experienced pilot. The new channel Gedney discovered was 2 feet (0.61 m) deeper, enough of an added margin that fully laden ships could come into the harbor even at slack tide. Gedney's Channel, as it came to be called, was also shorter than the previous channel, another benefit appreciated by the ship owners and the merchants they sold to. Gedney received the praise of the city, as well as an expensive silver service.
In 1824 the first American drydock was completed on the East River. Because of its location and depth, the Port grew rapidly with the introduction of steamships; and then with the completion in 1825 of the Erie Canal New York became the most important transshipping port between the American interior and Europe as well as coastwisedestinations. By about 1840, more passengers and a greater tonnage of cargo came through the port of New York than all other major harbors in the country combined and by 1900 it was one of the great international ports. The Morris Canal, carrying anthracite and freight from Pennsylvania through New Jersey to its terminus at the mouth of the Hudson in Jersey City. Portions in the harbor are now part of Liberty State Park.
A steamship, often referred to as a steamer, is a type of steam powered vessel, typically ocean-faring and seaworthy, that is propelled by one or more steam engines that typically move (turn) propellers or paddlewheels. The first steamships came into practical usage during the early 1800s; however, there were exceptions that came before. Steamships usually use the prefix designations of "PS" for paddle steamer or "SS" for screw steamer. As paddle steamers became less common, "SS" is assumed by many to stand for "steam ship". Ships powered by internal combustion engines use a prefix such as "MV" for motor vessel, so it is not correct to use "SS" for most modern vessels.
The Erie Canal is a canal in New York, United States that is part of the east–west, cross-state route of the New York State Canal System. Originally, it ran 363 miles (584 km) from where Albany meets the Hudson River to where Buffalo meets Lake Erie. It was built to create a navigable water route from New York City and the Atlantic Ocean to the Great Lakes. When completed in 1825, it was the second longest canal in the world and greatly affected the development and economy of New York, New York City, and the United States.
The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States or America, is a country comprising 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is slightly smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U.S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D.C., and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico. The State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean. The U.S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The extremely diverse geography, climate, and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.
In 1870, the city established the Department of Docks to systematize waterfront development, with George B. McClellan as the first engineer in chief. By the turn of the 20th century numerous railroad terminals lined the western banks of the North River (Hudson River) in Hudson County, transporting passengers as well as freight from all over the United States. The freight was ferried across by the competing railroads with small fleets of towboats, barges, and 323 car floats , specially designed barges with rails so cars could be rolled on.New York subsidized this service which undercut rival ports. Major road improvements allowing for trucking and containerization diminished the need.
George Brinton McClellan was an American soldier, civil engineer, railroad executive, and politician. A graduate of West Point, McClellan served with distinction during the Mexican–American War (1846–1848), and later left the Army to work in railroads until the outbreak of the American Civil War (1861–1865). Early in the war, McClellan was appointed to the rank of major general and played an important role in raising a well-trained and organized army, which would become the Army of the Potomac in the Eastern Theater; he served a brief period as general-in-chief of the Union Army. Although McClellan was meticulous in his planning and preparations, these very characteristics hampered his ability to challenge aggressive opponents in a fast-moving battlefield environment. He chronically overestimated the strength of enemy units and was reluctant to apply principles of mass, frequently leaving large portions of his army unengaged at decisive points.
A railroad car float or rail barge is an unpowered barge with rail tracks mounted on its deck. It is used to move railroad cars across water obstacles, or to locations they could not otherwise go, and is towed by a tugboat or pushed by a towboat. As such, the car float is a specialised form of the lighter, as opposed to a train ferry, which is self-powered.
The Statue of Liberty (Liberty Enlightening the World) stands on Liberty Island in the harbor, and the Statue of Liberty National Monument recalls the period of massive immigration to the United States at the turn of the 20th century. The main port of entry at Ellis Island processed 12 million arrivals from 1892 to 1954.While many stayed in the region, others spread across America, with more than 10 million leaving from the nearby Central Railroad of New Jersey Terminal.
After the United States entered World War II, the German navy's Operation Drumbeat set the top U-boat aces loose against the merchant fleet in U.S. territorial waters in January 1942, starting the Second happy time . The U-boat captains were able to silhouette target ships against the glow of city lights, and attacked with relative impunity, in spite of U.S. naval concentrations within the Harbor. Casualties included the tankers Coimbria off Sandy Hook and Norness off Long Island. New York Harbor, as the major convoy embarkation point for the U.S., was effectively a staging area in the Battle of the Atlantic, with the U.S. Merchant Marine losses of 1 of 26 exceeding those of the other U.S. forces.
Bright city lights made it easier for German U-boats to spot targets at night, but local officials resisted suggestions that they follow London's lead and blackout the lights of coastal cities. However, some lights were darkened, including those of the amusement parks in Coney Island, Brooklyn, and the Coney Island Light, and Sandy Hook Lighthouse.
The Harbor reached its peak activity in March 1943, during World War II, with 543 ships at anchor, awaiting assignment to convoy or berthing (with as many as 426 seagoing vessel already at one of the 750 piers or docks). Eleven hundred warehouses with nearly 1.5 square miles (3.9 km2) of enclosed space served freight along with 575 tugboats and 39 active shipyards, the largest being Brooklyn Navy Yard. With a large inventory of heavy equipment, this made New York Harbor the busiest in the world.
Deterrence and investigation of criminal activity, especially relating to organized crime, is also the responsibility of the bi-state Waterfront Commission.The Commission was set up in 1953 (a year before the movie On the Waterfront ), to combat labor racketeering. It is held that the Gambino crime family controlled the New York waterfront and the Genovese crime family controlled the New Jersey side. In 1984 the Teamsters local was put under Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) trusteeship, and in 2005 a similar suit was brought against the International Longshoremen's Association local.
In March 2006, the Port passenger facility was to be transferred to Dubai Ports World. There was considerable security controversy over the ownership by a foreign corporation, particularly Arabic, of a U.S. port operation, this in spite of the fact the current operator was the British-based P&O Ports,and the fact that Orient Overseas Investment Limited, a company dominated by a Chinese Communist official, has the operating contract for Howland Hook Marine Terminal. An additional concern is the U.S. Customs "green lane" program, in which trusted shippers have fewer containers inspected, providing easier access for contraband material.
The Port of New York and New Jersey is the largest oil importing port and third largest container port in the nation.The commercial activity of the port of New York City, including the waterfronts of the five boroughs and nearby cities in New Jersey, since 1921 has been formalized under a single bi-state Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. Since the 1950s, the New York and Brooklyn commercial port has been almost completely eclipsed by the container ship facility at nearby Port Newark-Elizabeth Marine Terminal in Newark Bay, which is the largest such port on the Eastern Seaboard. The port has diminished in importance to passenger travel, but the Port Authority operates all three major airports in New York (La Guardia, built 1939 and JFK/Idlewild, built 1948) and Newark (built 1928).
The harbor is still serviced by several cruise lines, commuter ferries, and tourist excursion boats. Although most ferry service is private, the Staten Island Ferry is operated by the New York City Department of Transportation. Passenger ship facilities are New York Passenger Ship Terminal, the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal at Red Hook, and MOTBY at Bayonne.
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) is a joint venture between the U.S. states of New York and New Jersey, established in 1921 through an interstate compact authorized by the United States Congress. The Port Authority oversees much of the regional transportation infrastructure, including bridges, tunnels, airports, and seaports, within the geographical jurisdiction of the Port of New York and New Jersey. This 1,500-square-mile (3,900 km2) port district is generally encompassed within a 25-mile (40 km) radius of the Statue of Liberty National Monument. The Port Authority is headquartered at 4 World Trade Center and is a member of the Real Estate Board of New York.
Newark Bay is a tidal bay at the confluence of the Passaic and Hackensack Rivers in northeastern New Jersey. It is home to the Port Newark-Elizabeth Marine Terminal, the largest container shipping facility in Port of New York and New Jersey, the third largest and one of the busiest in the United States. An estuary, it is periodically dredged to accommodate ocean-going ships.
Upper New York Bay, or Upper Bay, is the traditional heart of the Port of New York and New Jersey, and often called New York Harbor. It is enclosed by the New York City boroughs of Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Staten Island and the Hudson County, New Jersey, municipalities of Jersey City and Bayonne.
The New York–New Jersey Harbor Estuary, also known as the Hudson-Raritan Estuary, is in the Mid-Atlantic states of New Jersey and New York on the East Coast of the United States. The system of waterways of the Port of New York and New Jersey forms one of the most intricate natural harbors in the world. The harbor opens onto the New York Bight in the Atlantic Ocean to the southeast and Long Island Sound to the northeast.
The Howland Hook Marine Terminal is a container port facility in the Port of New York and New Jersey located at Howland Hook in northwestern Staten Island, New York City. It is situated on the east side of the Arthur Kill, at the entrance to Newark Bay, just north of the Goethals Bridge and Arthur Kill Vertical Lift Bridge.
NY Waterway, or New York Waterway, is a private transportation company running ferry and bus service in the Port of New York and New Jersey and in the Hudson Valley. While operations and much marketing come under the NY Waterway logo, the company works with other private companies and in public-private partnership with agencies such as the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, New Jersey Transit, New York City Department of Transportation, and Metropolitan Transportation Authority, to provide service and maintain docking facilities.
The transportation system of New York City is a network of complex infrastructural systems. New York City, being the most populous city in the United States, has a transportation system which includes one of the largest subway systems in the world; the world's first mechanically ventilated vehicular tunnel; and an aerial tramway. New York City's airport system, which includes John F. Kennedy International Airport, LaGuardia Airport, Newark Liberty International Airport, Stewart Airport and a few smaller facilities, is one of the largest in the world. New York City is also home to an extensive bus system in each of the five boroughs, and numerous taxis throughout the city.
New York New Jersey Rail, LLC is a switching and terminal railroad that operates the only car float operation across Upper New York Bay between Jersey City, New Jersey and Brooklyn, New York. Since mid-November 2008, it has been owned by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which acquired it for about $16 million as a step in a process that might see a Cross-Harbor Rail Tunnel completed.
The Central Railroad of New Jersey Terminal, also known as Communipaw Terminal and Jersey City Terminal, was the Central Railroad of New Jersey's waterfront passenger terminal in Jersey City, New Jersey. It was also serviced by CNJ-operated Reading Railroad trains, the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, and the Lehigh Valley Railroad during various periods in its 78 years of operation.
The Cross-Harbor Rail Tunnel is a proposed freight rail transport tunnel under Upper New York Bay in the Port of New York and New Jersey between northeastern New Jersey and Long Island, including southern and eastern New York City.
Liberty Water Taxi is a water taxi service based at Liberty Landing Marina in Jersey City, New Jersey, United States offering service between Liberty State Park in Jersey City, Warren Street in Paulus Hook, Jersey City and the World Financial Center in Battery Park City, Manhattan. It is one of several private operators of ferries, sightseeing boats, and water taxis in the Port of New York and New Jersey.
The Hudson Waterfront is an urban area of northeastern New Jersey along the lower reaches of the Hudson River, the Upper New York Bay and the Kill van Kull. Though the term can specifically mean the shoreline, it often used to mean the contiguous urban area between the Bayonne Bridge and the George Washington Bridge that is approximately 19 miles (31 km) long. Historically, the region has been known as Bergen Neck, the lower peninsula, and Bergen Hill, lower Hudson Palisades. It has sometimes been called the Gold Coast.
The Red Hook Marine Terminal is an intermodal freight transport facility that includes a container terminal located on the Upper New York Bay in the Port of New York and New Jersey. The maritime facility in Red Hook section of Brooklyn, New York handles container ships and bulk cargo. The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) bought the piers in the 1950s when there was still much break bulk cargo activity in the port. The container terminal was built in the 1980s,
The West Midtown Ferry Terminal is a passenger bus and ferry terminal serving ferries along the Hudson River in New York City and northeastern New Jersey. It is located at Piers 78 and 79 in Hudson River Park adjacent to the West Side Highway at West 39th Street in Midtown Manhattan. The municipally-owned facility opened in 2005 as multi-user terminal to accommodate an increasing demand for ferry service in the Port of New York and New Jersey and to provide ferry slips for short haul crossings, water taxis, and high-speed long distance service. Built largely with public funds the West Midtown became upon its opening one of the principal terminals used by the private NY Waterway-operated routes to Jersey City, Hoboken, Weehawken, and Edgewater.
The Battery Park City Ferry Terminal is a passenger ferry terminal in Battery Park City, Manhattan, serving ferries along the Hudson River in New York City and northeastern New Jersey. It provides slips to ferries, water taxis, and sightseeing boats in the Port of New York and New Jersey. The floating dock is moored at the foot of Vesey Street.
The tugboat is a New York City icon. Once all steam powered, they soon became iconic, starting with the first hull, the paddler tug Rufus W. King of 1828.
From the start of railroading in America through the first half of the 19th century, New York City and Long Island were major areas for rail freight transportation. However, their relative isolation from the mainland United States has always posed problems for rail traffic. Numerous factors over the late 20th century have caused further declines in freight rail traffic. Efforts to reverse this trend are ongoing, but have met with limited success.
ExpressRail is a rail network supporting intermodal freight transport at the major container terminals of the Port of New York and New Jersey. The development of dockside trackage and railyards for transloading has been overseen by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey which works in partnership with other public and private stakeholders. As of 2019, four ExpressRail terminals were in operation.
The North Shore Branch is an abandoned branch of the Staten Island Railway in New York City, which operated along Staten Island's North Shore from Saint George to Port Ivory. The line continues into New Jersey via the Arthur Kill Vertical Lift Bridge to Cranford Junction.
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