Why didn’t the U.S. use the Mohawk River as part of the route to Lake Erie rather than starting the Erie Canal all the way back at Albany?
The U.S. mostly did. The Erie canal opened up in 1825 before motor boats were invented. That, and they had tributaries that ran into the river which affected them taking their mules with them. On top of that they had elevation changes that affected their travel.
Tributaries effects on the Mules
Elevation Levels made the difference
Let’s sum things up.
When the canal opened in 1825 it was before motorized boats were available, so small canal boats had to be pulled by mules.
But the tributaries ran into the river, and that made it impossible for mules to cross.
On top of that there was elevation changes in where the Mohawk dropped 400 feet before joining the last 60 miles that make the Hudson River.
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