At the time of Hudson's founding in 1785, the open waters of South Bay covered some 110 acres. This tidal estuary of the Hudson River and its companion bay on the other side of Hudson--North Bay--along with the river itself on the west all but encompassed the new city in water. From the beginning, the water surrounding Hudson served a dual purpose. It defined a natural landscape beauty that was fully appreciated at the moment of the earliest settlement in the area, and it provided the means to pursue human commerce.
South Bay, North Bay, and the river itself "all but encompassed the new city in water." Water connected Hudson with the world. It made Hudson "the seaport far from the sea" and "provided the means to pursue human commerce."
More than two centuries later--two centuries during which Hudson progressively turned its back on the river and turned its bays into garbage dumps and landfills--Hudson is all but encompassed not by water but by the Town of Greenport--a situation generally thought to be restrictive not expansive. We have the chance now--if we only have the wisdom--to look back to the water that surrounds Hudson to define both the natural landscape beauty and the commercial potential of our future.