Rouses Point, New York

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Rouses Point is a village in Clinton County, New York, United States. The population was 2,277 at the 2000 census. The village is named after Jacques Rouse, an early settler.

The Village of Rouses Point is in northeast part of the Town of Champlain and is north of Plattsburgh. It is less than 1 mile south of the Canada–United States border.

Contents

History

Rouses Point was first settled around 1783 by Canadian and Nova Scotian refugees who were granted tracts of land in reward for their services during the American Revolution. Steamboats were a booming business on this part of the lake; the second commercial steamboat in the world was launched on Lake Champlain with Rouses Point as its first port-of-call. Steamboat traffic continued on the lake for the next 100 years, until displaced by the railroad.

Edward Thurber built the first frame house in 1818. Legend has it that President James Monroe stayed there. By 1860, Rouses Point had a variety of shops and tradespeople such as loggers, bakers, tailors, carpenters, blacksmiths, prostitutes, and hatters. Its location on the Canadian border made it an important stop on the Underground Railroad, through which many African-Americans escaped to freedom.

Rouses Point became an incorporated village in 1877, and grew quickly to a population of over 2,000 by 1892. The Delaware and Hudson Railroad opened a station, connecting the village to New York City and Montreal.

During Prohibition (1923–33), the village's proximity to the Canadian border made it popular with those who wanted to smuggle illegal alcohol across the border. Rum-running became common, and three speakeasies, one called "The Bucket of Blood" operated nightly. Organized crime visited the area, bringing with it the usual vices.

During World War II, the community was the scene of substantial shipments of war materials to points north by water and rail.

Today, the lake at Rouses Point has three marinas filled with pleasure craft. Wyeth, a pharmaceutical company, formerly employed over 1,000 people.

Geography

Rouses Point, located at 44°59′15″N 73°22′3″W / 44.9875°N 73.3675°W / 44.9875; -73.3675 (44.987531, -73.367634)[1], is the northernmost village in New York in terms of the center of population.

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