The Opening of the Erie Canal
Colden, Cadwallader D. Memoir, Prepared at the Request of a Committee of the Common Council of the City of New York, and Presented to the Mayor of the City, at the Celebration of the Completion of the New York Canals. Albany: Printed by Order of the Corporation of New York, by W. A. Davis, 1825.
Cadwallader D. Colden's Memoir documents the planning and construction of the Erie Canal. It also included a detailed account of the Celebration of the Grand Canal in New York City on November 4, 1825.The arrival in New York Harbor of the canal boat The Seneca Chief, having successfully sailed the entire length of the Erie Canal, marked the beginning of the festivities. Cadwallader D. Colden, former Senator and mayor of New York City, was the grandson of the first Surveyor-General of New York. The Committee of the Common Council of the City of New York requested Colden write this Memoir just a few days before The Seneca Chief arrived from Lake Erie. He was then asked by the Committee and the Recorder of the City to present the Memoir to the mayor. Immediately following the Memoir in this volume is found in the Appendix, Containing an Account of the Commemoration of the Completion of the Erie Canal . . . Together with a Statement of the Arrangements made by the Merchants, Citizens, and Societies, to Unite in the Celebration. . . and also Several Addresses, Maps, Prints, Lithographic Engravings . . . and Other Tributes of Respect. This larger text within the volume, documenting the celebration ceremonies for the canal in New York City, was published in 1826. Included in this Appendix is the Narrative of the Festivities Observed in Honor of the Completion of the Grand Canal, Uniting the Waters of the Great Western Lakes with the Atlantic Ocean. Begun at Buffalo, on the Twenty-Sixth of October, A.D. Eighteen Hundred and Twenty- Five, and Ended in the City of New York, on the Fourth Day of November Following. This extensive account, written by William L. Stone, includes lithographs by Imbert and is followed by facsimile copies of letters by John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, Charles Carroll, James Madison, John Quincy Adams, and General Lafayette.