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Explore Seneca Falls, the Birthplace of Women’s Rights

posted by Teresa Farrell at 2022-03-16 20:41:00

The Finger Lakes  town of Seneca Falls is a place with plenty of history. Known as the Birthplace of Women’s Rights, its main claim to fame is as the place where more than 300 women (and men) gathered for the first Women’s Rights Convention in 1848, which launched the women’s suffrage movement. Nearly 175 years later, Seneca Falls  remains well-known for its history, but also offers plenty of shopping, dining and recreational opportunities for visitors of all ages and interests to enjoy as well.

Located along the banks of the Cayuga-Seneca Canal, near the western shores of Cayuga Lake, Seneca Falls is a classic Finger Lakes canal town. The town’s main street, which borders the canal, is filled with charming shops, from antiques to boutiques; it’s a great place to do some shopping and strolling.

Seneca Falls is also home to plenty of restaurants, ranging from pubs to cafes to fine dining, many of which offer patio dining along the water during the summer months.

The canal itself is a recreational hub; boaters can tie up and spend the night in the harbor by registering with the Seneca Falls Heritage and Tourism Center, which offers amenities and information as well as the Seneca Museum of Waterways and Industry, with exhibits explaining what has made the canal so important throughout the ages. You can stroll along the canal by following the Ludovico Sculpture Trail, a short nature walk that features local sculptures and historic murals as well.

Just don’t go looking for waterfalls: despite its name, you won’t find any in Seneca Falls. That’s because the town was named for what was once more like a series of rapids; with the establishment of the canal system and its locks, the rapids were eliminated to make it possible for boats to navigate as they hauled goods from town to town.

Of course, a visit to Seneca Falls wouldn’t be complete without exploring its rich history. Stop in to the National Women’s Hall of Fame, located on the banks of the canal, where you’ll find exhibits detailing the achievements of hundreds of accomplished women throughout history, including recent history, as inductions are held each year.

You can also visit the Women’s Rights National Historic Park, which tells the story of the 1848 Women’s Rights Convention through a visitor’s center with exhibits and several historic houses, including the home of the convention’s main organizer and women’s rights leader Elizabeth Cady Stanton, who lived in Seneca Falls for 15 years.

The Seneca Falls Historic District also commemorates the town’s women’s rights history, as well as its contributions to the industrial revolution and the early manufacturing of fire engines and pump systems that would go on to be used throughout the world; and the Seneca Falls Historical Society Museum, which is supposedly haunted, deserves a stop as well.

Full information on trip planning and things to see and do can be found on Seneca Falls’ website.
National Women’s Hall of Fame exterior view photo credit fingerlakes.org
Downtown Seneca Falls photo credit David Wilson
When Anthony Met Stanton Statue photo credit Finger Lakes Tourism Alliance
Women’s Rights plaque photo credit Kenneth Zirkel

posted at: 2022-03-16 20:41:00, last updated: 2022-04-16 18:55:23

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