Palisades — an 1837 commentator wrote: “The first feature of the celebrated banks of the Hudson, which arrests the eye of the traveller after leaving New York, is this singular wall of rock, extending as far onward as he can see, and forming a bold barricade against the river on the side of New Jersey. This singular precipice varies in height from fifty to two hundred feet, and presents a naked front of columnar strata, which gives it its descriptive name. The small sloops which lie along under the shore, loading with building stone from its base, and an occasional shed, diminished to the size of a dog-kennel, across the breadth of the river, are the only marks of life and habitation it presents to the traveller’s eye.

“With most persons, to mention the Palisades is to recall only the confusion of a steamer’s deck, just off from the wharf, with a freight of seven or eight hundred souls hoping to ‘take tea’ in Albany. The scene is one of inextricable confusion, and it is not till the twenty miles of the Palisades are well passed, that the bewildered passenger knows rightly whether his wife, child, or baggage, whichever may be his tender care, is not being left behind at the rate of fifteen miles in the hour.”