Sandy Schuman

Sandy Schuman

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Erie Canal Quiz

Answers are given below.

  1. What was 363 miles long, 40 feet wide, and 4 feet deep?
  2. Why is New York’s nickname “The Empire State”?
  3. Why did the United States see its greatest population growth over the period 1810-1860?
  4. Why did the populations of Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois surge during that period?
  5. Why do people in Rochester, Buffalo, and Chicago speak with the same accent?
  6. Why is the Statue of Liberty in New York Harbor?
  7. What was called the “Mother of Cities”?
  8. Why do the upstate New York cities of Albany, Schenectady, Rome, Syracuse, all have streets named “Erie Boulevard”?
  9. What caused great disruption to the Haudenosaunee people in the early 19th century?
  10. What served as a thoroughfare for the Underground Railroad?
  11. How was cholera spread across New York State in the epidemic of 1832?
  12. Why is the Port of NY-NJ the largest port on the U.S. east coast?
  13. What was the first “school of engineering” in America?
  14. Where is the greatest lift in the shortest distance on any canal system in the world?
  15. Which New York innovation is expected to be portrayed on the U.S. Mint’s American Innovation Coin?


If you answered “Erie Canal” to each of the above questions, you are correct! For some questions, more complete answers would elaborate additional contributing factors. For example, the New York Port started its growth after the War of 1812, which concluded in 1815. However, in the following years, shipping may well have shifted to other eastern ports, returning New York to its former position as a smaller port. The continued dominance of New York Port was assured by the Erie Canal.

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