National Park Service
The National Park Service is an agency of the United States federal government that manages all national parks, many national monuments, other conservation and historical properties with various title designations. It was created on August 25, 1916, by Congress through the National Park Service Organic Act and is an agency of the United States Department of the Interior; the NPS is charged with a dual role of preserving the ecological and historical integrity of the places entrusted to its management, while making them available and accessible for public use and enjoyment. As of 2018, the NPS employs 27,000 employees who oversee 419 units, of which 61 are designated national parks. National parks and national monuments in the United States were individually managed under the auspices of the Department of the Interior; the movement for an independent agency to oversee these federal lands was spearheaded by business magnate and conservationist Stephen Mather, as well as J. Horace McFarland. With the help of journalist Robert Sterling Yard, Mather ran a publicity campaign for the Department of the Interior.
They wrote numerous articles that praised the scenic and historic qualities of the parks and their possibilities for educational and recreational benefits. This campaign resulted in the creation of a National Park Service. On August 25, 1916, President Woodrow Wilson signed a bill that mandated the agency "to conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and wildlife therein, to provide for the enjoyment of the same in such manner and by such means as will leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations." Mather became the first director of the newly formed NPS. On March 3, 1933, President Herbert Hoover signed the Reorganization Act of 1933; the act would allow the President to reorganize the executive branch of the United States government. It wasn't until that summer when the new President, Franklin D. Roosevelt, made use of this power. Deputy Director Horace M. Albright had suggested to President Roosevelt that the historic sites from the American Civil War should be managed by the National Park Service, rather than the War Department.
President Roosevelt issued two Executive orders to make it happen. These two executive orders not only transferred to the National Park Service all the War Department historic sites, but the national monuments managed by the Department of Agriculture and the parks in and around the capital, run by an independent office. In 1951, Conrad Wirth became director of the National Park Service and went to work on bringing park facilities up to the standards that the public expected; the demand for parks after the end of the World War II had left the parks overburdened with demands that could not be met. In 1952, with the support of President Dwight D. Eisenhower, he began Mission 66, a ten-year effort to upgrade and expand park facilities for the 50th anniversary of the Park Service. New parks were added to preserve unique resources and existing park facilities were upgraded and expanded. In 1966, as the Park Service turned 50 years old, emphasis began to turn from just saving great and wonderful scenery and unique natural features to making parks accessible to the public.
Director George Hartzog began the process with the creation of the National Lakeshores and National Recreation Areas. Since its inception in 1916, the National Park Service has managed each of the United States' national parks, which have grown in number over the years to 60. Yellowstone National Park was the first national park in the United States. In 1872, there was no state government to manage it, so the federal government assumed direct control. Yosemite National Park began as a state park. Yosemite was returned to federal ownership. At first, each national park was managed independently, with varying degrees of success. In Yellowstone, the civilian staff was replaced by the U. S. Army in 1886. Due to the irregularities in managing these national treasures, Stephen Mather petitioned the federal government to improve the situation. In response, Secretary of the Interior Franklin K. Lane challenged him to lobby for creating a new agency, the National Park Service, to manage all national parks and some national monuments.
Mather was successful with the ratification of the National Park Service Organic Act in 1916. The agency was given authority over other protected areas, many with varying designations as Congress created them; the National Park System includes. The title or designation of a unit need not include the term park; the System as a whole is considered to be a national treasure of the United States, some of the more famous national parks and monuments are sometimes referred to metaphorically as "crown jewels". The system encompasses 84.4 million acres, of which more than 4.3 million acres remain in private ownership. The largest unit is Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Preserve, Alaska. At 13,200,000 acres, it is over 16 percent of the entire system; the smallest unit in the system is Thaddeus Kosciuszko National Memorial, Pennsylvania, at 0.02 acre. In addition to administering its units and other properties, the National Park Service provides technical and financial assistance to several "affiliated areas" authorized by Congress.
The largest affiliated area is New Jersey Pinelands National Reserve at 1,164,025 acres. The smallest is Benjamin Franklin National Memorial at less than 0.01 acres. Although all units of the Nat
Highlands – Sea Bright Bridge
The Highlands-Sea Bright Bridge is a bridge connecting Highlands, New Jersey in the west to Sea Bright, New Jersey in the east, across the Shrewsbury River. The eastern terminus is at the entrance to Sandy Hook; the span is part of Route 36. Several bridges have occupied the site; the first was a wooden beam bridge which lasted three years from 1872 to 1875. The second, a combination wood and steel swing bridge, was constructed in 1878 and lasted until demolition in 1949, though it was closed to traffic in 1933; the third bridge was a 1,240-foot bascule drawbridge, opened the following year. When closed, it had a vertical clearance of 35 feet. In October 1991, the New Jersey Department of Transportation recommended the replacement of the Highlands drawbridge with a 55-foot fixed-span bridge. According to an engineering study, replacement was believed to save $20 million over the cost-improvement actions outlined in a previous report that recommended extensive upgrades and partial replacement of bridge deck and superstructure.
From August 1991 to 2002, several reports and studies by the NJDOT determined the general design and requirements for the replacement bridge. Of the many possible options one notable alternative was to build a second drawbridge and maintain both at the same time. By February 2002 the option of a 65-foot-tall fixed-span bridge was approved, by 2007 the design of the bridge was complete and the contract awarded to J. H. Reid General Contractor with a budget of $124 million. Between 2008 and 2011, the new fixed-span bridge was constructed to replace the aging drawbridge; the new bridge is 75 ft tall and consists of two individual 1,610-foot-long spans resting on nine hollow precast concrete columns. The spans are made of 150 precast, post tensioned concrete box girders weighing between 30 and 70 tons each and achieve spans nearly twice the length of the steel spans of the original bridge; because the new bridge was built in place of the old bridge, workers needed to demolish half of the old bridge and construct half of the new bridge.
After the first half of the new bridge was completed traffic was shifted to the new span, the other half of the old bridge was demolished, making way for the second half of the new bridge. Construction of the new bridge began in February 2008 and was opened to traffic in December 2010; the entire project was completed in the spring of 2011. A ribbon-cutting ceremony occurred on May 2011 to dedicate the newly constructed bridge. Several state and local officials attended the ceremony. In October 2012, the bridge became a life saver for the remaining residents of Sea Bright as the historic storm surge pushed ashore during Superstorm Sandy, it was reported that members of the Sea Bright Fire and First Aids abandoned the town and stationed themselves on the highest remaining points in the area. The second bridge, the Rumson Bridge, which span the Shrewsbury River, was utilized. After the storm passed, an estimated 90 % of the town was said to be uninhabitable. History of the Highlands NJDOT Website
Cycling called biking or bicycling, is the use of bicycles for transport, exercise or sport. People engaged in cycling are referred to as "cyclists", "bikers", or less as "bicyclists". Apart from two-wheeled bicycles, "cycling" includes the riding of unicycles, quadracycles and similar human-powered vehicles. Bicycles were introduced in the 19th century and now number one billion worldwide, they are the principal means of transportation in many parts of the world. Cycling is regarded as a effective and efficient mode of transportation optimal for short to moderate distances. Bicycles provide numerous benefits in comparison with motor vehicles, including the sustained physical exercise involved in cycling, easier parking, increased maneuverability, access to roads, bike paths and rural trails. Cycling offers a reduced consumption of fossil fuels, less air or noise pollution, much reduced traffic congestion; these lead to less financial cost to the user as well as to society at large. By fitting bicycle racks on the front of buses, transit agencies can increase the areas they can serve.
Among the disadvantages of cycling are the requirement of bicycles to be balanced by the rider in order to remain upright, the reduced protection in crashes in comparison to motor vehicles longer travel time, vulnerability to weather conditions, difficulty in transporting passengers, the fact that a basic level of fitness is required for cycling moderate to long distances. Cycling became an activity after bicycles were introduced in the 19th century. Today, over 50 percent of the human population knows. In many countries, the most used vehicle for road transport is a utility bicycle; these have frames with relaxed geometry, protecting the rider from shocks of the road and easing steering at low speeds. Utility bicycles tend to be equipped with accessories such as mudguards, pannier racks and lights, which extends their usefulness on a daily basis; as the bicycle is so effective as a means of transportation various companies have developed methods of carrying anything from the weekly shop to children on bicycles.
Certain countries rely on bicycles and their culture has developed around the bicycle as a primary form of transport. In Europe and the Netherlands have the most bicycles per capita and most use bicycles for everyday transport. Road bikes tend to have a more upright shape and a shorter wheelbase, which make the bike more mobile but harder to ride slowly; the design, coupled with low or dropped handlebars, requires the rider to bend forward more, making use of stronger muscles and reducing air resistance at high speed. The price of a new bicycle can range from US$50 to more than US$20,000, depending on quality and weight. However, UCI regulations stipulate. Being measured for a bike and taking it for a test ride are recommended before buying; the drivetrain components of the bike should be considered. A middle grade dérailleur is sufficient for a beginner, although many utility bikes are equipped with hub gears. If the rider plans a significant amount of hillclimbing, a triple-chainrings crankset gear system may be preferred.
Otherwise, the lighter and less expensive double chainring may be better. Much simpler fixed wheel bikes are available. Many road bikes, along with mountain bikes, include clipless pedals to which special shoes attach, via a cleat, enabling the rider to pull on the pedals as well as push. Other possible accessories for the bicycle include front and rear lights, bells or horns, child carrying seats, cycling computers with GPS, bar tape, baggage racks, baggage carriers and pannier bags, water bottles and bottle cages. For basic maintenance and repairs cyclists can carry a pump, a puncture repair kit, a spare inner tube, tire levers and a set of allen keys. Cycling can be more efficient and comfortable with special shoes and shorts. In wet weather, riding can be more tolerable with waterproof clothes, such as cape, jacket and overshoes and high-visibility clothing is advisable to reduce the risk from motor vehicle users. Items required in some jurisdictions, or voluntarily adopted for safety reasons, include bicycle helmets, generator or battery operated lights and audible signalling devices such as a bell or horn.
Extras include a bicycle computer. Bikes can be customized, with different seat designs and handle bars, for example. Many schools and police departments run educational programs to instruct children in bicycle handling skills and introduce them to the rules of the road as they apply to cyclists. In different countries these may be known as bicycle rodeos or operated as schemes such as Bikeability. Education for adult cyclists is available from organizations such as the League of American Bicyclists. Beyond riding, another skill is riding efficiently and safely in traffic. One popular approach to riding in motor vehicle traffic is vehicular cycling, occupying road space as car does. Alternately, in countries such as Denmark and the Netherlands, where cycling is popular, cyclists are segregated into bike lanes at the side of, or more separate from, main highways and roads. Many primary schools participate in the national road test in whi
New York City
The City of New York called either New York City or New York, is the most populous city in the United States. With an estimated 2017 population of 8,622,698 distributed over a land area of about 302.6 square miles, New York is the most densely populated major city in the United States. Located at the southern tip of the state of New York, the city is the center of the New York metropolitan area, the largest metropolitan area in the world by urban landmass and one of the world's most populous megacities, with an estimated 20,320,876 people in its 2017 Metropolitan Statistical Area and 23,876,155 residents in its Combined Statistical Area. A global power city, New York City has been described as the cultural and media capital of the world, exerts a significant impact upon commerce, research, education, tourism, art and sports; the city's fast pace has inspired the term New York minute. Home to the headquarters of the United Nations, New York is an important center for international diplomacy.
Situated on one of the world's largest natural harbors, New York City consists of five boroughs, each of, a separate county of the State of New York. The five boroughs – Brooklyn, Manhattan, The Bronx, Staten Island – were consolidated into a single city in 1898; the city and its metropolitan area constitute the premier gateway for legal immigration to the United States. As many as 800 languages are spoken in New York, making it the most linguistically diverse city in the world. New York City is home to more than 3.2 million residents born outside the United States, the largest foreign-born population of any city in the world. In 2017, the New York metropolitan area produced a gross metropolitan product of US$1.73 trillion. If greater New York City were a sovereign state, it would have the 12th highest GDP in the world. New York is home to the highest number of billionaires of any city in the world. New York City traces its origins to a trading post founded by colonists from the Dutch Republic in 1624 on Lower Manhattan.
The city and its surroundings came under English control in 1664 and were renamed New York after King Charles II of England granted the lands to his brother, the Duke of York. New York served as the capital of the United States from 1785 until 1790, it has been the country's largest city since 1790. The Statue of Liberty greeted millions of immigrants as they came to the U. S. by ship in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and is an international symbol of the U. S. and its ideals of liberty and peace. In the 21st century, New York has emerged as a global node of creativity and entrepreneurship, social tolerance, environmental sustainability, as a symbol of freedom and cultural diversity. Many districts and landmarks in New York City are well known, with the city having three of the world's ten most visited tourist attractions in 2013 and receiving a record 62.8 million tourists in 2017. Several sources have ranked New York the most photographed city in the world. Times Square, iconic as the world's "heart" and its "Crossroads", is the brightly illuminated hub of the Broadway Theater District, one of the world's busiest pedestrian intersections, a major center of the world's entertainment industry.
The names of many of the city's landmarks and parks are known around the world. Manhattan's real estate market is among the most expensive in the world. New York is home to the largest ethnic Chinese population outside of Asia, with multiple signature Chinatowns developing across the city. Providing continuous 24/7 service, the New York City Subway is the largest single-operator rapid transit system worldwide, with 472 rail stations. Over 120 colleges and universities are located in New York City, including Columbia University, New York University, Rockefeller University, which have been ranked among the top universities in the world. Anchored by Wall Street in the Financial District of Lower Manhattan, New York has been called both the most economically powerful city and the leading financial center of the world, the city is home to the world's two largest stock exchanges by total market capitalization, the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ. In 1664, the city was named in honor of the Duke of York.
James's older brother, King Charles II, had appointed the Duke proprietor of the former territory of New Netherland, including the city of New Amsterdam, which England had seized from the Dutch. During the Wisconsinan glaciation, 75,000 to 11,000 years ago, the New York City region was situated at the edge of a large ice sheet over 1,000 feet in depth; the erosive forward movement of the ice contributed to the separation of what is now Long Island and Staten Island. That action left bedrock at a shallow depth, providing a solid foundation for most of Manhattan's skyscrapers. In the precolonial era, the area of present-day New York City was inhabited by Algonquian Native Americans, including the Lenape, whose homeland, known as Lenapehoking, included Staten Island; the first documented visit into New York Harbor by a European was in 1524 by Giovanni da Verrazzano, a Florentine explorer in the service of the French crown. He named it Nouvelle Angoulême. A Spanish expedition led by captain Estêvão Gomes, a Portuguese sailing for Emperor Charles V, arrived in New York Harbor in January 1525 and charted the mouth of the Hudson River, which he named Río de San Antonio.
The Padrón Rea
Sandy Hook Proving Ground
The Sandy Hook Proving Ground was a military facility along the Atlantic coast of New Jersey established by the Secretary of War on August 7, 1874, to serve as the United States Army's first proving ground for the testing of ordnance and materiel. The facility was located at Sandy Hook, a narrow coastal spit of land 6 miles in length and 0.5 miles wide, in Middletown Township in Monmouth County. The facility was operated in conjunction with the adjoining Fort Hancock. Abandoned in 1919 for a larger facility, the area was left to degrade and most of the structures still remain today; the proving ground and parts of Fort Hancock are now property of the National Park Service and closed to the public. The Civil War, just ten years earlier, had introduced several new innovations in weaponry. Rifled cannon fired pointed-nosed projectiles farther and faster than cannonballs and ironclad warships with mounted guns that could destroy the walls of a traditional fort; the Army needed a place to test its own new weapons.
The Sandy Hook Peninsula met the Army's needs for an experimental testing area for heavy ordnance and was on land, government owned, which provided flat and open areas for testing. Sandy Hook was distant enough to be far from towns but close enough to large cities and transportation by water. In 1874, most of Sandy Hook was covered with holly and cedar forests and tidal marshes which still cover a large percentage of it today. Most of the Federal development of the Hook was concentrated on the northern end. A huge granite five-bastioned fort near the northern end of the Hook dominated the area though it was still incomplete and was destined never to be completed. In addition to the fort, there was the Engineer's wharf, erected on the western shore in 1857, to accommodate the fort's construction, the Engineers' shop and quarters, the Sandy Hook Life-Saving Station, established on the northeastern shore in 1854, it was decided to lay out the Proving Ground on the eastern margin of the Hook, just below the southeast bastion of a Civil War-era fort.
The firing range was to extend southward along the beach with the facilities consisting of the wooden gun platforms of the proof battery, a bombproof, a frame instrument house, sand butts on the firing range. After its formal establishment in 1874, it was nearly two years before facilities were completed that allowed staffing and testing to reach its potential; because of the period of time involved, the bulk of the weaponry designed and installed for coastal defense under both the Taft and Endicott Boards were tested at Sandy Hook. Over time, several red brick buildings, including structures used as maintenance buildings and an Officers Club, were built as part of the Proving Ground; when Fort Hancock was commissioned in 1895 as a Coast Artillery Post, it shared the peninsula with the Proving Ground. The "Proof Battery," where new and converted guns would be fired, was built at the northeastern end of Sandy Hook along the ocean side; the firing range extended 3,000 yards south along the beach and for long range test firing, guns would be aimed out to sea to provide the necessary distance.
The first test firing took place in October 1874, when a 10-inch Rodman smoothbore cannon, converted into an 8-inch rifled gun, was fired. After firing 700 rounds, the Ordnance Board found the gun to still be "sound and serviceable." To test the guns' striking power, armor-piercing projectiles were fired at large, thick iron plates, similar to those used in making warships. These tests proved. In the 1880s, new high- powered, breech-loading rifled cannons made of steel were introduced, they had more striking power. When new models of guns and mortars passed their ordnance tests, they were mass-produced at gun foundries around the country and sent to Sandy Hook for testing before being issued for use. Many new types of gunpowder, artillery shells and primers used to explode projectiles were tested. In 1900, Proof Battery was relocated because of Fort Hancock's need for the location to build a gun battery; the new Battery was built southeast of its old location. The eastern end of the new Proof Battery was designed for test firing machine guns and siege guns, howitzers – larger guns like a 14-inch caliber – were test fired at the west end of the battery.
In the middle were mounted a variety of guns from 1-to-12-inch caliber. When a gun was fired, the gun crew stood behind 12-foot thick concrete walls in the niches in case the gun blew up during testing and personnel could watch from atop a 50-foot observation tower behind the traverses. In 1889, a narrow gauge railroad was constructed to bring equipment and guns from the docks to the proof battery. In 1893, a standard gauge railroad was completed to the mainland and connected with commercial railroad lines that were built to allow civilians from steamships to travel down the shore, it is believed. The train would take the tourists that came from New York City to destinations including Long Branch; when Fort Hancock did not want civilians near its facilities, the civilian railroad was moved to a dock in the Spermaceti Cove vicinity and removed altogether. The Sandy Hook Proving Ground took over the railroad on the Hook, utilized it for passenger, troop train, railway gun movements; this allowed for interchange with Class 1 railroads at Highlands, New Jersey.
The Sandy Hook Proving Ground's engine was named "General Rodman". When they left circa 1920, the railroad operation was transferred to the engine
The Rodman gun is any of a series of American Civil War–era columbiads designed by Union artilleryman Thomas Jackson Rodman. The guns were designed to fire both shell; these heavy guns were intended to be mounted in seacoast fortifications. They were built in 8-inch, 10-inch, 13-inch, 15-inch, 20-inch bore. Other than size, the guns were all nearly identical in design, with a curving bottle shape, large flat cascabels with ratchets or sockets for the elevating mechanism. Rodman guns were true guns that did not have a howitzer-like powder chamber, as did many earlier columbiads. Rodman guns differed from all previous artillery because they were hollow cast, a new technology that Rodman developed that resulted in cast-iron guns that were much stronger than their predecessors. Guns had been traditionally cast solid and the bore was bored out of the solid metal. With this traditional method, the gun cooled from the outside inward. Castings shrink; as each succeeding layer cooled it contracted, pulling away from the still molten metal in the center, creating voids and tension cracks.
Drilling out the bore removed the voids, but the tensions in the metal were still toward the outside. Rodman devised a method of hollow casting where the gun cooled from the inside out, so that as cooling occurred, it created compression rather than tension; this resulted in a much stronger gun. With Rodman's method of casting, a cooling core was placed in the mold before casting; this core consisted of a watertight cast-iron tube, closed at the lower end. A second, smaller tube, open at the bottom was inserted into the first; as the molten iron was poured into the mold, water was pumped through the smaller tube to the bottom of the larger tube. The water flowed out at the top; the water continued flowing. To further ensure that the gun cooled from the inside out, a fire was built around the iron flask containing the gun mold, keeping the gun mold nearly red-hot. For an 8-inch Rodman columbiad, the core was removed 25 hours after casting and the flow of water continued through the space left by the core for another 40 hours.
Over 50,000 gallons of water was used in the process. For larger guns, the cooling periods were more water was used. After cooling the gun the machining process began; the bore was bored out to proper size, the exterior was turned smooth, the trunnions were turned on a trunnion lathe, a vent was drilled. Columbiads were not the only guns cast using Rodman's method. Dalgren XV-inch shell guns for the U. S. Navy were hollow cast. A 20-inch hollow cast gun, which may not have been identical to the two guns supplied to the U. S. Army, was sold to Peru. Rodman guns were cast at the Fort Pitt Foundry, Pennsylvania. Boston, Massachusetts. Rodman guns were mounted on three types of carriages—a front-pintle barbette carriage, a center-pintle barbette carriage, a casemate carriage. All of these carriages were made of wrought iron. All three types of carriage were similar in design, having an upper carriage, placed on a two-rail chassis; the gun and upper carriage recoiled along the chassis. The chassis would pivot to train the gun right.
The barbette carriages were designed to fire over a parapet and could be used in either permanent or temporary fortifications. The front pintle carriage pivoted at the front of the chassis; this made the gun mount more compact and allowed the gun and detachment to be better protected by embrasures and traverses. The center pintle carriage gave the gun a 360° traverse and was stronger for guns firing at high angles because the pintle, the strongest part of the carriage, would have been under the breech when the gun was fired at high angles; the casemate carriage was designed to fire from casemates which were chambers in permanent fortifications. The carriage was a front-pintle design, with the pintle fixed in the masonry in front of the chassis and below the guns embrasure. A "tongue" connected the chassis to the pintle; the casemate carriage has a lower profile than the barbette carriages. The 8-inch and 10-inch Rodman guns could be mounted on all three types of carriages; the 15-inch Rodman guns were mounted on both types of barbette carriage.
The two 20-inch guns were mounted on front-pintle barbette carriages. Rodman guns were all nearly identical in design, with a curving soda bottle shape, the only differences being the size of the gun, they were all smoothbore guns designed to fire spherical shot and shell against ships. The guns were depressed by means of a lever called the elevating bar; the point of this lever fits into ratchets on the earliest guns cast, or sockets on the guns. The fulcrum, called the ratchet post, fit on the rear transom of the upper carriage; the ratchet post was cast iron and had several notches for adjusting the position of the elevating bar. Only one 13-inch Rodman gun appears to have been made, but it was placed in service.. Two 20-inch Rodman guns were emplaced at New York. A third, shorter 20-inch gun was cast for the USS Puritan using the Rodman technology. One 20-inch Rodman gun remains in a park just north of Fort Hamilton, another is at Fort Hancock, Sandy Hook, New Jersey; the other, smaller Rodman guns were placed in seacoast fortifications around the United States.
It took 8 men to load and fire a 10-inch Rodman gun, 12 men for a 15-inch Rodman gun. Over 140 Rodman guns survive today and they may be seen at coastal fortifications around the country. Rodman guns saw little action during the Civil War. Two 10-inch columbiads were used in 1864 and 1865 in Union operation against Fort Sum
Upper New York Bay
Upper New York Bay, or Upper Bay, is the traditional heart of the Port of New York and New Jersey, called New York Harbor. It is enclosed by the New York City boroughs of Manhattan and Staten Island and the Hudson County, New Jersey, municipalities of Jersey City and Bayonne; the Upper Bay is fed by the waters of the Hudson River, as well as the Gowanus Canal. It is connected to Lower New York Bay by the Narrows, to Newark Bay by the Kill Van Kull, to Long Island Sound by the East River, which despite the name, is a tidal strait, it provides the main passage for the waters of the Hudson River. The channel of the Hudson as it passes through the harbor is called the Anchorage Channel and is 50 feet deep in the midpoint of the harbor. A project to replace two water mains between Brooklyn and Staten Island which will allowing for dredging of the channel to nearly 100 feet was begun in April 2012, it contains several islands including Governors Island, near the mouth of the East River, as well Ellis Island, Liberty Island, Robbins Reef which are supported by a large underwater reef on the New Jersey side of the harbor.
The reef was one of the largest oyster beds in the world and provided a staple for the diet of all classes of citizens both locally and regionally until the end of the 19th century, when the beds succumbed to pollution. It has played an important role in the commerce of the New York metropolitan area; the Statue of Liberty National Monument recalls the immigrant experience during the late 19th and early 20th century. Since the 1950s, container ship traffic has been routed through the Kill Van Kull to Port Newark-Elizabeth Marine Terminal, where it is consolidated for easier automated transfer to land conveyance; as a consequence, the waterfront industries of the Upper Bay experienced a decline leading to diverse plans for revitalization, though important maritime uses remain at Red Hook, Port Jersey, MOTBY, Constable Hook, parts of the Staten Island shore. Liberty State Park opened in 1976. In recent years, it has become a popular site for recreation kayaking; the harbor is traversed by the Staten Island Ferry, which runs between Whitehall Street at the southernmost tip of Manhattan near Battery Park and St. George Ferry Terminal on Richmond Terrace in Staten Island near Richmond County Borough Hall and Richmond County Supreme Court.
NY Waterway operates routes through The Narrows to locations near Sandy Hook. The Upper Bay supports a diverse population of marine species, allowing for recreational fishing, most for striped bass and bluefish