current city of Port Jervis was once part of the still
of Deerpark which was itself
established in 1798. After incorporating as a
village in 1853, and later being legally separated from the
Town of Deerpark, in 1907 Port Jervis became a city, the
smallest of the three found in Orange County.
Prior to the arrival of the first
Europeans near the start of the 18th century, the fertile
Neversink River bottomland running through today's Port Jervis was known as "Magagkamack,"
(Delaware Indian) phrase that
has been interpreted as "pumpkin field" or
"red lands." It was in the
vicinity of Port Jervis that a sub-group of the
Lenape, the Munsee, made their traditional seat of
government while the larger region in which Port
Jervis is located was "Minisink," a word still
used today as a regional geographic identifier.
of its location and waterways, which also includes the
mouth of the Neversink
river, Port Jervis has long been a transportation hub.
Owing to the mining and transportation of coal being a core reason
why the D & H Canal was built, researching and
first steam engine locomotive to run on commercial railroad
tracks in the United States was likewise among the many lifelong
engineering accomplishments of the
with its geography and relative prominence in early 19th century
transportation, the coming of the Erie Railroad in 1848
led Port Jervis to become an important
railroad center where one of region's few remaining steam
engine turntables can still be found.
the most famous of Port Jervis citizens is the acclaimed
author of the Red Badge of Courage, Stephen
Crane, who in 1878 took his first school lessons here. The inspiration for that novel and other
of his works held associations to Port Jervis where he
stayed with his brother
William, camped in Pike County with Port
Jervis friends, spent time in Sullivan County, and
returned for much of his 28 year life.
by the area's
natural beauty, including the
Nest" section of New York
Route 97, every year hundreds of thousands of visitors
and raft down the Delaware river.
This same region is a popular fishing
spot and is graced with American
Bald Eagles that can be observed
from public viewing areas, particularly during the winter
months. Because National
Geograhic recognized "the world-class natural and cultural
attractions of the middle and upper Delaware River region"
of which Port Jervis is part, it partnered with local
oranizations to create a useful geotourism guide map that
highlights the area's many interesting features, activities,
and points of interest. Visit the The National
Scenic, Wild Delaware River resource for more.
arriving at the Port Jervis train platform a fast
food restaurant is located nearby. If facing
toward the train and tracks the Delaware River and State
of Pennsylvania lie a few blocks away.
like many other small communities has struggled under
difficult economic conditions and all that comes with
it. Challenges continue to be met. Progress
is shown by an expansion of the city's largest employer,
improved quality of life, more recreation and hobbyist
choices, broader public interest in Port Jervis, and
commercial property renovation
03 October 2013
The Delaware River
Front Street runs the length of the
downtown Port Jervis retail business area. Along
this route are mainly found gift stores, antique dealers, barber shops, and restaurants. If walking
the full distance of the downtown area - about
one-quarter mile - the historic Erie Depot stands at its
far end. A short distance further on is an art
1) After exiting the train turn
your back to the tracks and walk to the concrete ramp
that is at the left side of the cement fence. 2) Walk up the ramp to the sidewalk. 3) At your right by the Orange sculpture is Front
Street which runs parallel with the train tracks. 4) Pike Street meets Front near the sculpture and
goes up the seen hill seen a few blocks away.
Street is the financial and governmental area of Port Jervis.
Banks, the post office, and the municipal building are found
here. A walk to the top of Sussex Street arrives at Orange
Square Veterans' Memorial Park originally built to honor veterans of
the American Civil War. Across Sussex Street from the park is
a Methodist church congregation and rectory associated with 1890s
American writer, poet, and
correspondent, Stephen Crane. .
1) Follow steps 1 through 3 to Front
Street. 2) Walk one block on right side of Front Street to Sussex Street and
cross to the left. At the corner there is a pillared building
with a chime clock. The walk from this spot to the park at the top of
the Sussex Street hill is about one-quarter mile.
The Delaware River serves as a dividing
line between Port Jervis, NY, and Matamoras, PA.
The bridge crossing the river provides a scenic view of
the valley and New Jersey where a stone monument can be
seen on a mountain top. Also in this area is an
asphalt walking trail that follows the river to the
city's West End Beach.
1) After exiting the train platform turn
to the right, heading back in the direction the train
2) Walk the length of the platform and then about
another 60 feet. 3)Pass through the opening on the left. An orange street
sculpture is there. 4) Use steps on immediate left leading to the train
5) Turn left and emerge on the distant end of of the
tunnel. This is Pike Street. 6) Proceed forward. Continuing in this direction on Pike
Street the bridge crossing the Delaware River is
found. Pennsylvania is on the far side. 7) If going to the walking trail or West End Beach carefully cross Pike Street at the King
Street intersection traffic light. 8) Walk three blocks on King Street to Avenue I and
turn left. 9) Go to the end of Avenue I and cross Water
Street. The walking trail is at the top of
the river bank. For West End Beach, follow the
trail to the right.