Erie Canal

A bold dream to connect the Hudson to the Great Lakes by canal created a transportation revolution

How a debt-ridden banana republic became the greatest economic engine the world has ever known

1. 1606: The Virginia Company is formed to seek profit from a new business: American settlement. 2. 1612: John Rolfe plants West Indian tobacco in Virginia, the cash crop that assures the colony’s success. Read more >>

All along its 360-mile route, towns to which the canal gave birth are looking to its powerful ghost for economic revival.