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Old 12-09-2014, 08:23 PM
 
Location: East Coast of the United States
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American history, culture and identity is so intertwined with New York City that it would be difficult to imagine what this country would be like without the city.
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Old 12-09-2014, 09:23 PM
Status: "I hate living in Georgia!!" (set 25 days ago)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eschaton View Post
The Dutch might not settle there, but as others have noted, it's pretty much impossible due to geography you won't get a city more or less where New York sits.

First, it's a great natural harbor. Second, the Hudson is one of the largest river systems in the eastern United States. In the pre-Railroad era, water was the only cost-effective way to transport bulk goods, meaning a city at the mouth of the Hudson would act as a catchment of all of the trade which took place upriver.

New York City really boomed, however, due to the construction of the Erie Canal in 1825. This was absolutely needed in order for mass migration from New England to settle the Great Lakes littoral. More importantly, it was needed to get goods from the Midwest traded in the wider world. Going through Canada wasn't even an option really yet, because the first Saint Lawrence canal wasn't built until 1871.

Without the Dutch, you might see the British found a settlement say on the Bergen Neck in New Jersey, or even perhaps Brooklyn or the Bronx. But something is going to be built there. The only way to avoid it being a major city is if the political boundaries in North America are quite different, and much of what is now the northern U.S. is split between hostile European powers. Say, for example, if the French retained control of everything in the Midwest, and decided to work on an early canal of the Saint Lawrence.
Someone is keen on their historical and economic geography. Water was the major mode of transport back in those days. I would say if the Dutch had not settled there first, someone else might have. Most likely it would have been the British.

If the Dutch had not been there, the city might be different. Please understand, Greenwich, Brooklyn, Bronx, all of those names originate from the Dutch. Long Island's Nassau County probably wouldn't have that name as Nassau was named for the House of Oranje-Nassau. Harlem wouldn't be named Harlem, as it was named for a town in The Netherlands called Haarlem.

Something else to consider. There is the possibility that New York City could have become a French-founded colony. The first European to set foot in the region was Verrazzanno. Although Italian, he was sailing under the service of France, as Christopher Columbus sailed for Spain.

What if the French founded a trading post where NYC stands instead of the Dutch?
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Old 12-10-2014, 07:50 AM
Status: "Thinking of the future..." (set 8 days ago)
 
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First, the world existed way before NYC was even settled and especially before it became an important city. Cities like Havana, Cap Francais (modern Cap Haitien), Santo Domingo; Lima, Rome, and many other cities at certain points were more important than NYC. Cap Haitien was the main commercial city of this hemisphere before the revolution broke out, its port was the busiest and it had the greatest commercial connections and trade with Europe, which at that time was the center of the world. Lets not forget it.

As for NY state, its southern tier plus Long Island would had been as upstate is now, sparsely populated, and generally an unimportant area.

The rest of the U.S. might had looked and developed the same as it's now, because NY's development probably would had taken place in another east coast city such as Boston, Providence, New Haven; Bridgeport, Philadelphia, Washinton or some other town. Life went on along the eastern seaboard before NY became important.
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Old 12-10-2014, 08:15 AM
 
Location: a bar
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The Patriots would have won Super Bowl XLII and completed an undefeated season.
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Old 12-10-2014, 08:44 AM
 
Location: USA
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The big city would have wound up being in the 757 (Hampton Roads, VA)
instead of the 212 (Manhattan,NY). You would have to read up a little more
on colonial american history in order to find out about that tho.
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Old 12-10-2014, 10:26 AM
 
Location: Brooklyn, New York
3,763 posts, read 3,868,286 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UrbanExplorer View Post
I can imagine that Boston, Providence, Hartford, and Albany would be MUCH larger than today.
Albany wouldn't exist, it was founded by the Dutch as well. Albany is the oldest continuously chartered city in the United States btw and has possibly the oldest running local government in the Western Hemisphere/New world.

Quote:
Originally Posted by eschaton View Post
New York City really boomed, however, due to the construction of the Erie Canal in 1825. This was absolutely needed in order for mass migration from New England to settle the Great Lakes littoral. More importantly, it was needed to get goods from the Midwest traded in the wider world. Going through Canada wasn't even an option really yet, because the first Saint Lawrence canal wasn't built until 1871.
Keep in mind, that even before the construction of Erie Canal, New York was already the largest city in the US. The Canal obviously helped, but it wasn't a major factor when it comes to population growth of the city. It was a major factor for the Midwestern cities however.

Without NYC, the area might not have been part of the US. It possibly would have stayed under the influence of French or British and/or joined Canada within British Commonwealth. Its also possible that the US as a whole would never get independence from Britain as well.
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Old 12-10-2014, 10:32 AM
 
Location: On the Great South Bay
7,150 posts, read 9,934,593 times
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Default There might not be a New York State

Quote:
Originally Posted by UrbanExplorer View Post
Me and a few co-workers had an interesting conversation yesterday about New York City. This might sound like an odd question that you may not have heard of before. What if Dutch settlers never explored or founded New York? That's right. What if New York City was never developed and it was still swampland and forest today? What do you think the state of New York, the region, and the rest of the country would be like today? What's your opinion? I felt like this was an interesting and yet odd question to ask because i havent seen any thread related to this. Feel free to share.
If there was no New York City (New Amsterdam) there might not have been a New York colony/state either. This is because during the colonial period, Massachusetts and Connecticut claimed territory all the way to Pacific. And without New York City, the Hudson Valley may have very well gone to those two colonies. And most of Long Island already belonged to Connecticut until the mid-1600s, without NYC, Connecticut may have very well kept the island.

Possible outcomes if there was no New York State:

1. Massachusetts extends deep into what is now NY State, possibly all the way to Niagara Falls. Imagine Niagara Falls, Massachusetts! Ithaca, Massachusetts! Buffalo, Massachusetts!
Treaty of Hartford - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (Mass claims to western NY State)

2. Connecticut would extend westward across the lower Hudson Valley until at least the Delaware River. Connecticut would also occupy Long Island. Connecticut would own most of the Catskills, which may very well be called the Blue Mountains.
Catskill Mountains - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

3. Vermont would probably not exist as an independent state. Vermont owes it independence partially to due to ownership squabbles between New York and New Hampshire. IF New York did not exist, New Hampshire may have likely kept control of Vermont.

4. New Hampshire control Vermont and extends at least to Lake Champlain. The real question is if New Hampshire also controls the Adirondacks-North Country area all the way to the St Lawrence River? Or do the Canadians or even Massachusetts get the North Country?

Imagine New Hampshire with the White Mountains, the Adirondacks and the Green Mountains! Wow, talk about Mountain State.

5. Pennsylvania may have ownership of much of New Jersey (see below). The "Friends" would also directly border Connecticut, which might have taken the disputes of the Yankee Pennamite War to a whole new level. Possibly with a different outcome.

Pennamite

6. New Jersey shares much of its early history with New York and New Netherland. So if NY does not exist, maybe NJ would not either. Without New York influence, the two small Jersey colonies (East and West) may have been eventually annexed by Pennsylvania. On the other hand, New Jersey may exist exactly as today except she would have additional territory......Staten Island.

Long post I know. Sorry.
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Old 12-10-2014, 11:38 AM
 
Location: USA
2,753 posts, read 2,230,017 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cliff Clavin View Post
The Patriots would have won Super Bowl XLII and completed an undefeated season.
Hahaha and the Red Sox would have won the 1986 World Series and the Yankees wouldn't have won 26 titles.
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Old 12-10-2014, 03:32 PM
 
Location: Center City
6,872 posts, read 7,828,899 times
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A large chunk of the hubbub of NYC would likely be concentrated in Philly and the Delaware Valley. All I can say is thank God there is a NYC: I like Philly the way it is.
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Old 12-10-2014, 04:10 PM
 
Location: Crooklyn, New York
28,311 posts, read 26,320,585 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by green_mariner View Post
I would say if the Dutch had not settled there first, someone else might have. Most likely it would have been the British.
They wanted to settle Manhattan.

Quote:
Indeed, as we discuss in Inside the Apple, the English initially considered Manhattan to be in the northernmost part of the Virginia colony. When the Pilgrims first left on the Mayflower for the New World, it was Manhattan they were aiming for, not Massachusetts, since they were required to settle in English territory.
Inside the Apple: The Takeover of New Amsterdam

Quote:
The Mayflower's intended destination was the northern Virginia territory at the mouth of the Hudson River that we know today as Manhattan. The first month out of England the trip went well. There were good sailing winds and calm seas but, by October, the wind became stronger and storms more frequent. No one really knows for sure why Capt. Christopher Jones went to Cape Cod instead of Virginia and many theories have been suggested. Eugene Stratton writes that one reason was that they wanted to be outside the jurisdiction of the Anglican Church, which was the established church in Virginia. However, Mr. Stratton states, "Bradford and Winslow went to their graves maintaining that they arrived at New England either by accident or by the treachery of Capt. Christopher Jones."
Pilgrim History

I wonder how Virginia would be different had the Pilgrims settled there and not Massachusetts.
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