In 1918, a complete modernization of the Erie Canal was undertaken, and with the placement of Locks 2 and 3, the “falls” part of Seneca Falls disappeared. The town of Seneca Falls is among the most popular stops along the Erie Canal because of its convenient location, shoreside attractions and good marina facilities. From here, you can also base trips to the Cayuga Lake State Park and further exploration into the Finger Lakes region.
The first white settlers along the Seneca River arrived in the area in the late 18th century. Water played an important part in the development of the area .By 1818 canal locks were built along the Seneca River, allowing boat traffic to avoid the rapids. By 1828, the Cayuga-Seneca Canal had been linked to the Erie Canal, making transport of raw materials and finished goods easier and opening up the much larger market for items manufactured locally. Seneca Falls remained an industrial village well into the 20th century as the home of Gould's Pumps, Sylvania and Seneca Machine.
In recent years tourism has become the major industry in Seneca Falls. The Women's Rights National Historical Park including the site of the first Women's Rights Convention and the Elizabeth Cady Stanton House, the National Women's Hall of Fame, the Seneca Falls Historical Society, the Seneca Museum of Waterways and Industry and the Seneca Falls Heritage Area Visitors Center as well as local wineries, the Finger Lakes and beautiful scenery of the Central New York all attract visitors to the Village of Seneca Falls.
Portions Courtesy Village of Seneca Falls
Use NOAA Chart 14786.
Approaching from the east, you will first need to navigate Locks 2 and 3, which will lift you into Van Cleef Lake at the Seneca Falls waterfront. A 30-foot vertical clearance fixed bridge crosses the canal between locks 2 and 3, but as tall vessels usually have superstructure and masts dismantled to travel the canal, this should not pose a problem.
Farther on, Bridges S-6 (16-foot vertical clearance), S-7 (16-foot vertical clearance), and S-8 (17-foot vertical clearance) cross the canal in close succession. Beyond the bridges, a series of daybeacons mark a shoal area on the north side of the canal channel.
Aside from boating and waterfront activities, there are several sites to see in Seneca Falls. Among the most popular local attractions are the Women’s Rights National Historical Park, the National Women’s Hall of Fame, Finger Lakes Wine Trails and Cayuga Lake State Park. For a complete calendar of events, see the “Helpful Links” section below.
There is no public transportation in the Seneca Falls area, but car rentals are available in town for those wishing to explore outlying areas. If you need only replenish your galley, local markets, stores and a pharmacy are within walking distance of the waterfront.