The New York State Archives has a new website. The website is

This website is for Informational purposes only.


Erie Canal: New York's Gift to the Nation

"(The Erie Canal) will bless (New Yorkers) with wealth and prosperity, and prove to mankind the superior wisdom of employing the resources of industry in works of improvement rather than of destruction."   Thomas Jefferson, June 8, 1826.

The Archives holds nearly 5 million documents about the construction and operation of New York's canal system. The records date from 1817 when construction began on the Erie Canal. The Archives also has information on the various feeder and lateral canals, principally the Champlain Canal, Oswego Canal, and the Cayuga and Seneca Canal, as well as dams, reservoirs, terminals and other canal facilities throughout New York. The Archives' canal records are an invaluable resource for understanding the growth and changes in canal communities, the development of the State's canal system, canal engineering and the creation of the American Empire.

A sampling of canal records for adoption:

green arrow Canal Structure Map and Plan Books, 1825 - 1905 
green arrow Maps, Drawings and Blueprints Relating to the State
transarrow.gif (817 bytes) Waterways and Canals, 1850-1940 
green arrow Barge Canal Construction Photographs, 1905-1921 
green arrow Barge Canal Vessel Registers, 1918-1971 
green arrow Correspondence and Petitions, 1817-1921