DeWitt Clinton


Public life

Occupation 1

Canal promoter

Occupation 2

NY governor


New York City


NA/Mid-Atlantic region


Maritime Republic (1751-1815)




New York City mayor and New York State governor�

His concern for commercial interests caused him to equivocate on the embargo policy so cardinal to the Republican administrations of Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, who felt that the best way to block England and France from interfering in American shipping was to suspend trade with those countries�

The idea of creating a waterway connecting the Hudson River to Lake Erie had become enormously popular and was essentially identified with Clinton, who had been designated a canal commissioner in 1810�

The completion of "Clinton's Ditch" in 1825 was marked by the governor's ceremonial journey from Buffalo to New York City. To underscore how the new link from Lake Erie to the Hudson River dramatically connected the far end of the state to rest of the world--and further enhanced the commercial importance of the port of New York--Clinton poured water from Lake Erie into the Atlantic Ocean�

Related Images

external image dewitt_clinton.jpg
Image Id: 1346
external image eriecanal.jpg
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Record ID: 166