There is no better way to see America than on foot. And there is no better way to appreciate what you are looking at than with a walking tour. This walking tour of Rome, New York from walkthetown.com is ready to explore when you are. Each walking tour describes historical, architectural landmarks, cultural sites and ecclesiastic touchstones and provides step-by-step directions. More
There is no better way to see America than on foot. And there is no better way to appreciate what you are looking at than with a walking tour. Whether you are preparing for a road trip or just out to look at your own town in a new way, a downloadable walking tour is ready to explore when you are.
Each walking tour describes historical and architectural landmarks and provides pictures to help out when those pesky street addresses are missing. Every tour also includes a quick primer on identifying architectural styles seen on American streets.
For centuries the area occupied by today’s Rome has been known to the travelers in the north-central woods. Boats coming up the Mohawk River from the Hudson River had to transfer their cargo and boats overland only between 1.7 and six miles, depending on the season, to continue west to Lake Ontario. The portage between the Mohawk River and Wood Creek was used by canoeists of the Iroquoian-speaking peoples and early English settlers called it the Oneida Carrying Place. Such a place of importance needed to be protected and the British erected several small forts along the Carrying Place to guard its lucrative fur trade from French interests in Canada. In 1758, during the French and Indian War British General John Stanwix began building a more substantial fortification here. Fort Stanwix was abandoned in 1768 and allowed to go to ruin but was revived by American Continentals during the Revolution. It was the primary staging point for American attacks against the British and continued to protect the frontier until it was abandoned in 1781.
With peace at hand settlers began to trickle into the Carrying Place. Dominick Lynch acquired 2,397 acres here in 1786 and began selling village lots. In 1797 the portage was eliminated with the completion of a canal connecting the Mohawk River and Wood Creek, a considerable engineering feat for the day ushering in a new era of progress. Twenty years later the Erie Canal, which was originally sited south of the village, was relocated and Rome’s success was assured.
Railroads followed the canals and with it came industry. Jesse Williams founded America’s first cheese factory at Rome in 1851. More importantly, in 1866 the Rome Iron Works began rolling iron rails and a decade later began rolling brass. The company evolved into Revere Copper and Brass, employing thousands in the world’s largest copper rolling mill. At one time, 10 percent of all copper products used in the United States were manufactured in Rome.
The United States Air Force became the dominant employer in Rome in the second half of the 20th century. Ground was broken on August 2, 1941 for the Rome Air Depot which became named Griffiss Air Force Base after Lt. Colonel Townsend E. Griffiss, the first U.S. airman to be killed in the line of duty in the European Theater during World War II. Griffiss became the headquarters of the Northeast Air Defense Sector until it was de-activated in the 1990s.
Rome is the second largest city by area in New York State and aggressive urban renewal efforts make it seem that way. Our spread-out tour will begin where the British dug their trenches during the siege of Fort Stanwix...