Thursday, November 5, 2009

The Hudson River Happy 400th!

The Mighty Hudson
In September of 1609--11 years before the Mayflower landed--an English explorer named Henry Hudson sailed into New York Bay and up a river that would later be named after him. To celebrate the 400th anniversary of Hudson's voyage, LIFE searched its archives for the best shots of the river. Pictured: Artillery at West Point, site of the famous military academy, in 1859.

Small Harbor on the Hudson
This is what Yonkers looked like in 1859: A small harbor with sail boats and piles of timber ready to move down river.

Ferry Station, 1859
A quaint landing for a ferry that provided transportation across the Hudson, between Garrison (pictured) and West Point.

Waiting for the Train, 1859
A group of men standing at Garrison Railroad Station on the east side of the Hudson River.

Rush Hour, Circa 1896
Early morning commuters disembark from the Pavonia Ferry at the foot of West 23rd Street at the Hudson River, New York City.

Ice Breakers
Spectators on the docks watch New Jersey Central tugboats slowly cross the ice-filled Hudson River in the winter of 1925.

Building the George Washington Bridge
A worker stands near the top of the George Washington Bridge--which connects New York to New Jersey--during its construction, circa 1930.

The Banks of the Beautiful Hudson, 1939

A River Ran Through It
Members of a Mohawk tribe greeted Henry Hudson when, sailing under a Dutch flag, he landed on the banks of the Hudson.

Canoe Party on the River

Lighting the Way, 1939
A lighthouse stands in the middle of the mighty Hudson, near the historic village of Athens, New York.

Roosevelt's Guide
Noah LeCasse was with Theodore Roosevelt, serving as his wilderness guide, when the news of President McKinley's assassination reached them at a remote spot on the Hudson river.

Grande Dam
The Croton Dam near the Hudson River.

Gore Vidal at Sunset
Author and essayist Gore Vidal on the porch of his home, in Barrytown, New York, 1960.

Bound for the City
Hudson River Day Liner, the Alexander Hamilton, passing under a bridge on its way to New York City.

View From the Sky
The piers and docked ships along the Hudson River in lower Manhattan.

River Traffic
Ship and tug boat traffic on the Hudson picks up as New York City becomes an industrial powerhouse.

Here Comes the Queen
Luxury ocean liner Queen Mary steaming down the Hudson River past a bustling 42nd Street.

Big River
Dozens of Navy battleships anchored in the Hudson River--from above the George Washington Bridge to the southern tip of Manhattan--during the first post-war Navy Day.

Rounding the Bend

One Ferry, Three Cars

The Glistening River, 1976

The Little Lighthouse That Could
Since 1921--ten years before the George Washington Bridge above it was completed--the "Little Red Lighthouse" has stood in this location, the only lighthouse in the city.

A Sense of Scale
That same lighthouse, dwarfed by the George Washington Bridge.

The G.W. Bridge at Night

Hudson Valley Green

The Hudson in January

Friends of the River
Environmental lawyer Robert F. Kennedy Jr. (L) and riverkeeper John Cronin helped revitalize the Hudson through their Riverkeeper organization which fights industries that pollute the river.

July 4th on the Hudson
Looking across the river at fireworks above the Manhattan skyline, 2009.

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