Subversive Historian – 09/11/08

Hudson’s Arrival to Manhattan Island

Four-hundred and ninety-nine years ago on this day in people’s history, English explorer Henry Hudson came ashore on Manhattan Island. Commissioned by the Dutch East India Company in order to find an alternative sea passage to Asia, Hudson happened upon the New York Harbor instead. He also happened upon the indigenous natives who inhabited the lands such as the Mahican peoples of modern day Albany. Nevertheless, as a result of his voyage, the Dutch established claims to the land and settlers began arriving in 1624. The ensuing presence of the Dutch had a profound impact on natives. Smallpox, wars and massacres had ensured that by less than one-hundred years before Hudson’s arrival, The Valley named after him had lost 90% of its indigenous population and those who remained were forced off the land.

It seems Manhattan Island knew tragedy long before September 11th, 2001

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