Iron Link from the Great Chain Across the Hudson River

Sterling Iron Works, Orange County, NY
Date: 1778
Maker: Sterling Iron Works, Orange County, NY
Dimensions: 30 1/2 L
Materials: Iron
Credit: Gift of Charles B. Webster
Accession Number: 1831.1

In 1778, General George Washington ordered Polish engineer Colonel Thaddeus Kosciusko to construct an iron chain across the Hudson River at West Point to block passage of British war ships from ascending the river to Albany. The massive chain, made of 1,200 links of wrought iron, stretched 1,700 feet in length, weighed sixty-five tons, and took forty men a total of four days to install. Charles B. Webster, publisher of the Albany Gazette, donated one of the original links to the Albany Institute.