Agriculture - Introduction




For at least a millennium, farmers in the Hudson River Valley have shaped land and altered ecosystems.

The Mahicans, Lenape, and River Indians pursued agriculture beginning around 1000 CE, the Late Woodland period. They cultivated maize, beans, squash, and tobacco. Archaeological investigations at Montgomery Place, however, indicate that native people used the banks and woodlands of these acres more for gathering and processing of wild foods such as nuts and animals than for agriculture.

Varieties of squash grown in what is now New York State. Photo: Cornell University Cooperative Extension.

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