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The Hudson River is a 315-mile watercourse that flows through eastern New York State in the United States.
The river originates at Henderson Lake in Newcomb, New York, in the Adirondack Park, flowing past the state capital at Albany, and eventually forming the boundary between New York City and New Jersey before emptying into Upper New York Bay. The lower half of the river is a tidal estuary occupying the Hudson Fjord, which formed during the most recent period of North American glaciation, estimated at 26,000 to 13,300 years ago. Tidal waters influence the Hudson's flow from as far north as Troy, New York.
The river is named after Henry Hudson, an Englishman who explored it in 1609 when he sailed for the Dutch East India Company. The river had previously been observed by Italian explorer Giovanni da Verrazano in 1524, but he considered the river to be an estuary. The Dutch called the river the "North River" while the Delaware River called the "South River." The Hudson formed the spine of the Dutch colony of New Netherland. Settlement of the colony clustered around the river, and its strategic importance as the gateway to the American interior led to years of competition between the English and the Dutch over control of the river and colony.
During the eighteenth century, the river valley and its inhabitants were the subject and inspiration of Washington Irving, the first internationally acclaimed American author. In the nineteenth century, the area inspired the Hudson River School of landscape painting, an American pastoral style, as well as the concepts of environmental conservation and wilderness.