• Paterson Great Falls

    Paterson Great Falls

    National Historical Park New Jersey

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  • Take a guided walking tour or tune in to the free app.

    Join us for a guided tour held daily at 11AM and 3PM. Meet us at the Alexander Hamilton statue at 72 McBride Avenue. Interested in a self-guided opportunity? Download the free app. Learn more about both options and we'll see you soon. More »

  • Only one portion of the park is closed - Mary Ellen Kramer Park

    Due to a landscape improvement project, a section of the park, Mary Ellen Kramer Park, and the pedestrian bridge crossing the chasm is closed. Project may be completed early in 2015. The Great Falls can still be viewed at Overlook Park, 72 McBride Ave.

Nature & Science

HOW DID THE GREAT FALLS GET HERE?

Learn about the geology of Paterson that created the features that eventually led to the establishment of the city.

 
Basalt cliffs of the Great Falls of the Passaic River
The gorge of the Great Falls showing the basalt cliffs
V. Scott - NPS PHOTO
 

NATIONAL NATURAL LANDMARK

The Great Falls of Paterson, the centerpiece of this park, became a National Natural Landmark in 1967. Their impressive power was the inspiration for Alexander Hamilton to establish the first planned industrial city in the United States here in 1792.

The National Natural Landmarks Program encourages and supports the conservation of sites that illustrate the nation's geological and biological history, and to strengthen the public's appreciation of America's natural heritage.

Learn more about the National Natural Landmarks Program.

Did You Know?

Alexander Hamilton

Alexander Hamilton, founder of Paterson, faced great opposition to his ideas for an industrial America? Many government leaders, including Thomas Jefferson, believed the new nation should base its economy, and could grow powerful, through agriculture – growing what it needed and selling the surplus.