Mohawk Valley

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The Mohawk Valley region of the U.S. state of New York includes the industrialized cities of Utica and Rome, along with other smaller commercial centers. The 5,882 square mile (15,234 kmĀ²) area is an important agricultural center and encompasses the heavily forested wilderness areas just to the north that are part of New York's Adirondack Park.

The Mohawk River is a natural passageway connecting the Atlantic Ocean, by way of the Hudson Valley with the interior of North America. Indian Nations of the Iroquois Confederacy lived in the region, and in the 1700s immigrants of German, Dutch and Scottish settled the area. During the 18th Century, the Mohawk Valley was a frontier of great political, military and economic importance. Colonists, such as Phillip Schuyler, Nicholas Herkimer, William Johnson, trading with the Iroquois set the stage for commercial and military competition between European nations, leading to the French and Indian Wars and the American Revolution. Almost 100 battles of the American Revolution were fought in New York State, including the Battle of Oriskany and defense of Fort Stanwix. A series of raids against valley residents took place during the war; led by John Johnson they were collectively known as the "Burning of the Valleys".

The Erie Canal was completed in 1825 as the first commercial connection between the American East and West.

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[edit] Strategic importance

During the French and Indian War, the Mohawk Valley was of prime strategic importance; to the British, it provided a corridor to the Great Lakes from which to threaten New France directly, while to the French it provided a corridor to the Hudson Valley and on to the heart of British North America. In addition, many settlements of the Mohawk, Britain's crucial Indian ally at the time of the war, were located in or near the valley.

At the beginning of the war, the major British stronghold in the Mohawk corridor was Fort Oswego, located on Lake Ontario. The French captured and destroyed the fort after a short siege in 1756, and the Mohawk Valley laid open to French advance as a result. Although the French did not directly exploit this avenue of attack, its impact swayed some of the Iroquois tribes to the French side.

[edit] Counties

Also, Schoharie County is sometimes considered to be part of the Mohawk Valley.

[edit] Major cities

[edit] Sources

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Mohawk Valley

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