The Mohawk Valley Villages are Canal communities bordering the banks of the Old Erie Canal and the Mohawk River in the western end of Montgomery County.
These communities share a past created by the building of the Erie Canal which continues to be reflected in historically significant architecture of the nineteenth century. The economic and social history of each of these villages tells the story of the Erie Canal in the Mohawk Valley Region. The commercial activity generated by the completion of the Erie Canal in 1825 created a boom in these small population centers. As farming and shipping centers small businesses sprung up serving the needs of local farmers and Canal travelers.
They quickly turned into mill towns and commercial centers with worker housing, miller owner dwellings, churches , canal related buildings and magnificent residences. The wealth generated by the economic activity of the Erie Canal is best illustrated by the large collection of buildings and structures now listed on the National Register of Historic Places and still lining the original streetscapes.
The villages of Canajoharie, Fonda-Fultonville, Fort Plain, Nelliston, Palatine Bridge and St. Johnsville, today, are geographically connected and are accessible by the Erie Canal, Mohawk River as well as the Canalway Bikepath, Route 5, Route 5S and the NYS Thruway i.e. I-90. Linking these small rural villages, today, highlights a natural heritage area, strengthens a cultural identity and creates economic opportunities for sustainable development.
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