Introduction to Paterson, New Jersey
The New Jersey city of Paterson is the county seat of the state's Passaic County. Located in New Jersey's Piedmont region between the Appalachian foothills and the Coastal Plain, Paterson is situated approximately 30 miles west of New York City. Commuter rail (provided by New Jersey Transit Main Line) and bus service (provided by NJ Transit) is heavily utilized in Paterson, which is also served by several surrounding highways. These include Interstate I-80; U.S. Route 46; and New Jersey State Highways 3, 19, 21, and 23.
Paterson's roots trace back to 1792, when Alexander Hamilton formed an investment group calling itself the Society of Useful Manufactures (SUM). The group's purpose was to raise funds for the development of a planned industrial city in the United States so that the nation's dependence on foreign goods could be reduced. This planned city was later to become Paterson. Its industries were centered around the 77-foot high Great Falls of the Passaic and an associated system of water raceways designed to harness its power. Dozens of mill buildings and other manufacturing structures associated with the textile industry soon sprung forward. Other industries followed, including firearms, railroad locomotive manufacturing, and silk. During the latter half of the 19th century, silk production became dominant in Paterson and was responsible for the city's most prosperous industrial period. Paterson thereupon acquired its well-earned nickname of "Silk City." Paterson became incorporated as a city in 1851.
Arts, Culture, and Entertainment in Paterson
One of Paterson's premiere historic landmarks is the Lambert Castle Museum. Built in 1893, the structure is the former home of Catholina Lambert, owner of a prominent silk mill in the city. Constructed in the Medieval Revival architectural style, the Castle underwent a multi-million dollar restoration in the late 1990s, resulting in a museum and library being formed using all four floors of the building. Paterson residents enjoy many opportunities throughout the year to celebrate the city's ethnic diversity. Every summer, the city celebrates an African-American Day Parade, a Puerto Rican Day Parade, a Dominican Day Parade, a Turkish-American Day Parade, and a Peruvian Day Parade. The city's Peruvian community also celebrates an annual ten-day October festival known as "El Se"or de los Milagros" (translation: "Our Lord of Miracles").
Attractions elsewhere in the New York metropolitan area abound in many forms. Within an hour from Paterson are several things to see and do. Among the more popular are the Empire State Building, the American Museum of Natural History, the Javits Center, Madison Square Garden, Manhattan's Central Park, the Rockefeller Center, Carnegie Hall, Battery Park, the Brooklyn Bridge, the Chrysler Building, the Bronx Zoo, the Apollo Theater, and of course, the Statue of Liberty.
New York and New Jersey are also home to several major league teams spanning multiple sports:
- Football: New York Jets and Giants (NFL)
- Baseball: New York Yankees and Mets (MLB)
- Basketball: New York Knicks and New Jersey Nets (NBA)
- Hockey: New York Rangers and Islanders; New Jersey Devils (NHL)
- Women's basketball: New York Liberty (WNBA)
- Soccer: Red Bull New York (MLS)
- Lacrosse: Long Island Lizards (MLL)