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 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.
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.
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 coastwise destinations. 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.
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.
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 (perhaps most importantly New York Naval Shipyard founded 1801). With a staggering 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 1920 America's Cup was the 13th challenge for the Cup and the first since 1903. It took place in New York Harbor and consisted of a best-of-five series of races between the defender Resolute, entered by a syndicate of New York Yacht Club members headed by Henry Walters, and Shamrock IV, the fourth in Sir Thomas Lipton's line of Cup challengers.
Despite being disabled in the first race and losing the second, Resolute won the final three races and in doing so retained the Cup on behalf of the NYYC, continuing the club's unbroken record of defending the America's Cup.
The 1920 America's Cup was originally scheduled to take place in 1914 but was postponed upon the outbreak of World War I. The 13th Cup challenge was the last to take place in New York, and the first held under the Universal Rule of measurement.Car float
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.Flood barrier
A flood barrier, surge barrier or storm surge barrier is a specific type of floodgate, designed to prevent a storm surge or spring tide from flooding the protected area behind the barrier. A surge barrier is almost always part of a larger flood protection system consisting of floodwalls, levees (also known as dikes), and other constructions and natural geographical features.
Flood barrier may also refer to barriers placed around or at individual buildings to keep floodwaters from entering that building.Fort Wadsworth Light
Fort Wadsworth Light is a 1903 lighthouse built atop Battery Weed on Staten Island in New York Harbor. The light illuminates the Narrows, the entrance to the harbor. It is located under the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge. Fort Wadsworth Light was part of the transfer of Fort Wadsworth from the Navy to the National Park Service in March 1995 as part of Gateway National Recreation Area.
Its light was visible for 14 nautical miles (26 km; 16 mi). The lantern was possibly moved from Fort Tompkins Light in 1903. When the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge opened in 1965 the lighthouse became obsolete. Dark for many years, it was restored and converted to solar power by volunteers in 2005.Gateway National Recreation Area
Gateway National Recreation Area is a 26,607-acre (10,767 ha) U.S. National Recreation Area in New York City and Monmouth County, New Jersey. It provides recreational opportunities that are rare in a dense urban environment, including ocean swimming, bird watching, boating, hiking and camping. Ten million people visit Gateway annually.Gateway was created by the U.S. Congress in 1972 to preserve and protect scarce or unique natural, cultural, and recreational resources with relatively convenient access by a high percentage of the nation's population. It is owned by the federal government and managed by the National Park Service.Geography of New York–New Jersey Harbor Estuary
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.
Although the overall form of the estuary remains unchanged from the time of Giovanni da Verrazzano's visit in 1524, no part of it remains unaffected by human activity, and some parts, such as Hell Gate and Ellis Island, have been almost completely altered. In the greatest hidden change, the navigational channels have been deepened from the natural 17 feet (5.2 m) depth to 45 feet (14 m), in some places requiring blasting of bedrock.There is an extremely complex system of tides and currents. Both the Bight and the Sound are essentially marine bodies with both tides and saltwater, but the Sound compared to the Atlantic is about 20-30% less saline (as an estuary), and the tide is about 3 hours later with as much as 70% more variation. Rivers add a fresher, non-tidal inflow although the tide and brackishness extend well up rivers throughout the extended hydrologic system from Albany to Montauk Point to the Hudson Canyon region of the New York Bight. The New York Harbor Observing and Prediction System (NYHOPS) utilizes information from sensors, weather forecasts, and environment models to provide real-time forecasts of meteorological and oceanographic conditions in the area.
Since the Ash Wednesday Storm of 1962 beaches along the shores of the East Coast have been regularly replenished with sand pumped in from off-shore. The United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) coordinates the projects. In 2016 the USACE and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey produced a comprehensive restoration plan for the harbour region, which included proposals to mitigate the effects of sea-level rise through projects to restore natural areas.Harbor Defense Museum
The Harbor Defense Museum, sometimes called The Caponier, located within the grounds of Fort Hamilton in the Bay Ridge section of Brooklyn is a 19th-century fort, New York City's only military museum and one of only seventy military museums in the United States that is funded and operated by the Defense Department.Caponiers, the technical name of the structure that now houses the museum, are outworks; in the case of Fort Hamilton its mission was to protect the main fortress from rear attacks. Originally a small fort within the larger fort, it now serves as the guardian of Fort Hamilton's history. Robert E. Lee served at Fort Hamilton in the 1840s, when there was only one Army.
Because it was used as a warehouse after it was no longer needed for military purposes, it was better preserved than other parts of the fort. While the museum and fort were in danger of closing in the mid 1990s due to budget cuts, it was preserved due to an agreement between the Fort and the United States Army Center of Military History and preservation efforts of the Fort Hamilton Historic Society. The museum continues to serve an educational role in explaining the history of the evolution of New York Harbor.Fort Hamilton is the "second-oldest continuously garrisoned federal post in the nation", second only to West Point and its ties to the community are part of the charm of the museum and the fort. Although The Caponier was always prepared for battle, with a 24-pound cannon aimed at New York Harbor, the fort never experienced a battle. The museum houses an array of artifacts from New York's military history including American Revolutionary War relics, uniforms from various wars, old maps of the fort, the post's old switchboard, an exhibit on a secret tunnel that connected Fort Hamilton with another base a half-mile away, a Confederate mine and a piece of the net that protected New York Harbor from German U-boats in World War I. It is also the temporary home of a Bay Ridge time capsule that was unearthed prematurely due to construction.Kisco River
The Kisco River is a creek that runs through the Mount Kisco, New York area. It is formed by the forks of Chappaqua Brook and an unnamed stream. It follows a 3.3-mile (5.3 km) winding course before emptying into the New Croton Reservoir at Lake Road Bridge in the town of New Castle near the hamlet of Stanwood and eventually into the Atlantic Ocean via the Croton River, the Hudson River, and New York Harbor.
Its name is derived from the village of Mount Kisco, which the river flows through. The name of Mount Kisco is further derived from "seesquee", which may also be written as "cisqua", which is the Algonquin word for "muddy place", referring to the marshlands in the area.List of rivers of Connecticut
Most of Connecticut's rivers flow into Long Island Sound and from there the waters mix into the Atlantic Ocean. A few extremely eastern rivers flow into Block Island Sound. The list is arranged by drainage basin from east to west, with respective tributaries indented from downstream to upstream under each larger stream's name.Lucky Bucky in Oz
Lucky Bucky in Oz (1942) is the thirty-sixth in the series of Oz books created by L. Frank Baum and his successors, and the third and last written and illustrated solely by John R. Neill. (He wrote a fourth, The Runaway in Oz, but died before illustrating it.)
Bucky Jones is aboard a tugboat in New York Harbor when the boiler blows up. He is soon blown into the Nonestic Ocean where he meets Davy Jones, a wooden whale. The pair take an undersea route to the Emerald City, and have many adventures along the way.Medal of Liberty
The Medal of Liberty was awarded in 1986 by President Ronald Reagan to twelve outstanding individuals chosen as representative of the most distinguished naturalized citizens of the United States of America. David L. Wolper, producer of ABC's television's 1986 Independence Day Weekend media event, came up with the idea to have the President present awards to a select group of naturalized citizens as an essential part of the ceremonial festivities commemorating the 100th anniversary of the dedication of the Statue of Liberty in New York Harbor.
The awarding of this medal took place only once by design, as it was linked to a centennial celebration event. No other Medals of Liberty have been awarded since Liberty Weekend in 1986, although it is always possible more may be awarded when Lady Liberty turns 200.
The Medal of Liberty is a circular, bronze medallion, seven inches in diameter, hand finished and patinated by Alex Shagin. On the obverse of the medal is the bust of Frédéric Bartholdi, facing slightly to the right and holding in his right hand his small bronze sculpture of Liberty Enlightening the World, his template for the construction of the Statue of Liberty National Monument at the mouth of the Hudson River in New York Harbor. Bartholdi's name appears vertically, his middle name, Auguste, to the left of his bust and his surname to the right.
Medal recipients were announced by Ted Koppel of ABC News.National Register of Historic Places listings in Manhattan on islands
This is intended to be a complete list of historic properties and districts listed on the National Register of Historic Places located on islands other than Manhattan Island but still in New York County, New York. For all properties and districts in the borough of Manhattan, see National Register of Historic Places listings in New York County, New York. The locations of National Register properties and districts (at least for all showing latitude and longitude coordinates below) may be seen in an online map by clicking on "Map of all coordinates".
This National Park Service list is complete through NPS recent listings posted March 22, 2019.New York Harbor School
The Urban Assembly New York Harbor School, also called the Harbor School, is a public high school located on Governors Island. This school is unique in New York City, which has 538 miles (866 km) of waterfront, in that it attempts to relate every aspect of its curriculum to the water. The school is part of the Urban Assembly network of 21 college-prep schools in New York City.A stated focus of the school is to continue to work with organizations such as Waterkeeper Alliance and the Governors Island Alliance to ensure the improvement and restoration of New York City's harbor.Operation Sail
Operation Sail refers to a series of sailing events held to celebrate special occasions and features sailing vessels from around the world. Each event is coordinated by Operation Sail, Inc., a non-profit organization established in 1961 by U.S. President John F. Kennedy and must be approved by the United States Congress. Often referred to as OpSail or Op Sail, the event has the goals of promoting good will and cooperation between countries while providing sail training and celebrating maritime history. It is also sometimes erroneously referred to as "Tall Ships". While the tall ships form the centerpiece of the event, smaller sailing vessels also participate.
Op Sail events, when scheduled, are run concurrently with the annual International Naval Review, which features present-day warships from various navies. Six Op Sail events have been held to date, in 1964, 1976, 1986, 1992, 2000 and 2012. The event culminates in the Parade of Ships on the Hudson River and in New York Harbor on July 4, Independence Day. The United States Coast Guard cutter Eagle has been the host vessel to all six Op Sail events.
Along with Nils Hansell, Frank Braynard launched the world's first Operation Sail, an extravanganza in which tall ships and naval vessels filled New York Harbor, in 1964.Operation Underworld
Operation Underworld was the United States government's code name for the cooperation of Italian and Jewish organized crime figures from 1942 to 1945 to counter Axis spies and saboteurs along the U.S. northeastern seaboard ports, avoid wartime labor union strikes, and limit theft by black-marketeers of vital war supplies and equipment.
In the first three months after the Attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, the U.S. lost 120 merchant ships to German U-boats and surface raiders in the Battle of the Atlantic and in February 1942 the ocean liner SS Normandie – a captured French ship that was being refitted as a troop ship in New York harbor – was allegedly sabotaged and sunk by arson in the Port of New York. The Mafia boss Albert Anastasia claimed responsibility for the sabotage. Although the United States government claimed the loss of the Normandie was accident, many Americans were skeptical and thought the destruction was planned by the Nazis. Several Axis spies and saboteurs were arrested and hanged for their crimes but no evidence was ever produced linking Axis spies to the loss of the Normandie. After the war, Axis records claimed no sabotage operation had existed and no evidence has ever been produced on the Allied side to indicate there had been underworld sabotage. The Normandie had a very efficient fire protection system but it was conveniently disconnected during the conversion. With sparks from a welding torch, Clement Derrick ignited a stack of life vests filled with flammable kapok, the fire quickly spread and eventually so much water was used to put the fire out that the ship became too heavy. Nobody knows if Clement Derrick had been paid by the underworld to burn the ship. The ship's designer Vladimir Yourkevitch arrived at the burning ship to offer his expertise and was barred by harbor police, his idea was to enter the vessel and open the sea-cocks which would flood the lower decks and make the ship stabilize, then water could be pumped into burning areas without the risk of capsize. The suggestion was rejected by the commander of the 3rd Naval District, Rear Admiral Adolphus Andrews.
Nevertheless, fears about possible sabotage or disruption of the waterfront led Commander Charles R. Haffenden of the U.S. Navy Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI) Third Naval District in New York to set up a special security unit. He sought the help of Joseph Lanza, who ran the Fulton Fish Market, to get intelligence about the New York waterfront, control the labor unions, and identify possible refueling and resupply operations for German submarines with the help of the fishing industry along the Atlantic Coast. To cover Lanza’s activities, he was suggested to approach Charles Luciano who was an important boss of the five New York Mafia crime families. Luciano agreed to cooperate with authorities in hopes of consideration for early release from prison.Luciano was in Dannemora at the time, serving a 30 to 50-year sentence for running a prostitution ring. For his cooperation he was moved to a more convenient and comfortable open prison in Great Meadows in May 1942. Luciano’s influence in stopping sabotage remains unclear, but authorities did note that strikes on the docks stopped after Luciano’s attorney Moses Polakoff contacted underworld figures with influence over the longshoremen and their unions. In 1946 Luciano's sentence was commuted – after serving 9½ years – and he was deported to his native Italy.SS Cody Victory
The SS Cody Victory was a Victory ship built during World War II under the Emergency Shipbuilding program. She was launched by the California Shipbuilding Company on April 27, 1944, and completed on June 15, 1944. The ship's United States Maritime Commission designation was VC2-S-AP3, hull number 69. She was operated by the Alcoa SS Company. SS Cody Victory served as a troop ship in the Atlantic Ocean and Pacific Ocean during World War II as part of Operation Magic Carpet. The SS Cody Victory and 96 other Victory ships were converted to troop ships to bring the US soldiers home. Burt Lancaster was with the Army's Twenty-First Special Services Division on the Cody Victory on August 14, 1945, as the ship was at sea heading to Hampton Roads, Virginia, when the V-J Day announcement was made. The Cody Victory boarded troops from Leghorn, Italy, on August 18, 1945, and then steamed to Naples, Italy on August 20, 1945, taking on more troops. She delivery the 2,032 troops to Hampton Roads Pier 8, including the 101st Ordnance MM Company. On January 14, 1946, she arrived at New York Harbor from Marseilles, France, with 1,559 troops. On February 20, 1946, she arrived in New York Harbor from Bremerhaven, Germany, with troops.After the war, in 1946, she was laid up in the Hudson River for a year.Upper New York Bay
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.VA New York Harbor Healthcare System
The VA New York Harbor Healthcare System is a set of hospitals run by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs in the New York City area. It comprises three medical centers, two community outpatient clinics, and five veterans centers. The system is a component of the much larger New York/New Jersey VA Health Care Network.Waterfront Commission of New York Harbor
The Waterfront Commission of New York Harbor (WCNYH) is a regulatory agency in Port of New York and New Jersey in the United States. The bi-state agency was founded in 1953 by a Congressionally authorized compact between New York and New Jersey "for the purpose of eliminating various evils on the waterfront in the Port of New York Harbor." Under statutory mandate, the mission of the commission is to investigate, deter, combat and remedy criminal activity and influence in the port district and also ensures fair hiring and employment practices. New Jersey attempted to withdraw from the pact in 2018.
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