Stephen M. Saland

Throughout the month of July, festivities from the New York Harbor to the Canadian border will take place commemorating the explorations of Henry Hudson and Samuel de Champlain in 1609 as well as the 200th anniversary of Robert Fulton’s steamship voyage on the Hudson River.  The Hudson-Fulton-Champlain Quadricentennial will be recognizing these significant events which greatly contributed to our State’s rich history, growth, and culture.   

Communities along the Hudson and Lake Champlain will discover their connection to the past through a myriad of exhibits, exploration of trails, various demonstrations highlighting centuries old practices and celebrations ranging from raft races, parades, fairs and concerts. 

Such recognition of these voyages is not new to New York State.  In fact, in 1909 the Hudson-Fulton Commemorative celebrating the anniversaries of the voyages drew international attention and resulted in the reproductions of Hudson’s vessel, the Half Moon, and Fulton’s first steamship, the Clermont.   

Recognizing the historic significance of the voyages to our State’s history, I and Assemblyman Grannis (currently the Commissioner of the Department of Environmental Conservation) worked to establish the Hudson-Fulton-Champlain Quadricentennial Act which created the commission seven years ago to coordinate this commemoration. 

It is gratifying to see this event come to fruition and to  witness the spirit of the communities involved and the enthusiasm of the participants.  Bringing history alive during these series of celebratory events is surely a fitting tribute to those who helped shape our culture and played such an important role in shaping the future of the Hudson Valley.  

It is my hope that residents and visitors far and wide take the opportunity to join in on these festivities and enjoy taking a step back into a fascinating time in our beautiful region’s heritage. For more information on the schedule of events and to visit the Quadricentennial’s website, click here.