"It is the landscape that defined America..."
The Hudson River is a vital artery in the history of the state
and city. It's been a source of travel and transport, revolution
and democracy, survival and inspiration for Native Americans,
Europeans, and Americans for centuries.
In 1997, the Hudson River was declared an American Heritage
River, and described by National Park Service officials in a report
as “the landscape that defined America.”
Much of the American Revolution took place in the Hudson Valley,
as seen at nearby West Point, Washington's headquarters in
Newburgh, and the remnants of chains strung across the Hudson by
revolutionaries to deter British ships.
Hudson Valley: Source of an environmental landmark
The Mid-Hudson Valley offers Mount students rich study
opportunities and a wealthy history of environmental activism and
In 1962, Con Edison planned to build a hydro-electric plant at
Storm King Mountain, the beautiful high ridge that sits at the
mouth of the Hudson Highlands. Local activists formed the Scenic
Hudson Preservation Coalition around a kitchen table, and brought
suit against the utility titan.
The court made a landmark ruling that environmental impact had
to be considered in such projects. Congress then passed the
National Environmental Policy Act.
The Hudson River: A natural laboratory
The Hudson River is a tidal estuary, meaning it flows in both
directions with the rhythms of the ocean tide. The river supports a
biologically-rich environment and an important ecosystem for
aquatic life. For many key species, it provides critical habitats
and essential spawning and breeding grounds.
Today, many local environmental groups have helped to clean the
Hudson River by monitoring water quality and fish health, and
pursuing legal action against polluters.
In the best traditions of those who set out to clean and protect
“America’s First River,” The Mount belongs to the Environmental
Consortium of Hudson Valley Colleges & Universities.