From our home in western Bergen County, N.J. a neighbor’s half-mast flag seems to echo sadness and guarded apprehension, as our budding cherry blossoms perhaps offer at least a small glimmer of hope for the months ahead.
About four weeks ago, in one of our last ventures before the Corvid-19 Pandemic, we visited the little town of Piermont, New York …on the Hudson River, and explored its 182 year old rock and earthen pier, which by 1851 served as a loading and unloading track bed for Erie Railroad trains picking up steamboat passengers from Lower Manhattan, twenty-five miles to the South. On the then longest rail line in the world, vacationers would travel 450 miles (724 km) to Dunkirk, NY and the shores of Lake Erie. Some hundred years later, long after the excursions were outmoded, tens of thousands of WW II troops would depart from this same mile long pier to ferries, and transfer onto troop ships in NY Harbor. Sadly, thousands would literally leave their last footsteps on U.S. soil right here. A monument nearby is solemnly named “Last Stop, USA.”
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And a special note: BE WELL, …and please use best judgement practices as we “navigate” through these un-precedented difficult times. M
I’d like to thank the Piermont Historical Society for their added information concerning this topic, and Wikipedia. I am a proud contributer/donator to both sources.