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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
West Point in Orange County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

West Point in the American Revolution

 
 
West Point in the American Revolution Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, June 8, 2012
1. West Point in the American Revolution Marker
Inscription. The history of West Point in the American Revolution began in May 1775 when George Washington and other Americans recommended that the Hudson River be blocked to prevent the British from using the waterway to strike into the interior of New York or to divide the colonies in two. After a reconnaissance in June, the Americans decided to fortify the area near “the west point” of the Hudson River and Constitution Island.

From 1775 to 1776, American soldiers built fortifications on Constitution Island to block the difficult, double turn in the Hudson River. In 1776 – 1777, they concentrated on the new works near Bear Mountain, south of West Point, and installed the first iron chain across the river there. After the British destroyed these positions in 1777, the American leaders finally decided to fortify West Point. In January 1778 American soldiers began to build Fort Clinton, the first of a series of fortifications which soon made West Point the most important post in America.

A key part of the West Point defensive zone was the Great Chain which was emplaced in April 1778 between Fort Clinton and Marine Battery on Constitution Island.

West Point remained an army post after the Revolutionary War; in 1802, the United States Military Academy was founded here among the remains of the fortification which
West Point in the American Revolution Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, September 5, 2009
2. West Point in the American Revolution Marker
made West Point “a key to the continent” from 1777 to 1783.
 
Location. 41° 23.754′ N, 73° 57.351′ W. Marker is in West Point, New York, in Orange County. Marker can be reached from Washington Road, on the right when traveling west. Click for map. Marker is located at Trophy Point at the U.S. Military Academy. Marker is in this post office area: West Point NY 10996, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Constitution Island (here, next to this marker); Our National Heritage (here, next to this marker); Sherburne’s Redoubt (here, next to this marker); In Memoriam (here, next to this marker); The Great Chain (a few steps from this marker); Wars That Shaped the Nation (within shouting distance of this marker); Fred E. McAniff & John R. Parker (within shouting distance of this marker); a different marker also named Wars That Shaped the Nation (within shouting distance of this marker). Click for a list of all markers in West Point.
 
Categories. Notable PlacesWar, US Revolutionary
 
Markers at Trophy Point image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, September 5, 2009
3. Markers at Trophy Point
Marker is on the right in the photo.
Markers on the Hudson River image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, September 5, 2009
4. Markers on the Hudson River
Several markers are found at this Hudson River overlook at Trophy Point. The "American Revolution" marker can be seen in the center of the photo.
West Point of the Hudson River image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, September 5, 2009
5. West Point of the Hudson River
This photo, taken from the marker, shows the point where the Great Chain spanned the Hudson River from 1788 to the end of the Revolutionary Way.
The Great Chain image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, September 5, 2009
6. The Great Chain
Thirteen links from the Great Chain are on display near the marker. A French 6-pounder cannon, cast in 1761 and used by the American Artillery during the Revolutionary War, can be seen in the background.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 1,887 times since then and 30 times this year. Photos:   1. submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.   2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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