• Paterson Great Falls

    Paterson Great Falls

    National Historical Park New Jersey

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  • Interested in Reserving a Tour

    Are you planning to visit Paterson Great Falls this winter? If so, plan ahead and make a reservation in advance for the free orientation tour - A Stroll Through History. More »

  • Mary Ellen Kramer Park Closure Announcement from the City of Paterson

    Due to landscape improvement project, Mary Ellen Kramer Park, landing & footbridge will be closed on November 4, 2013. The project may be completed by end of 2014. Reservations for NPS programs will still be taken. Falls can be viewed from Overlook Park

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?

Map detail

New Jersey was chosen as the site of the first planned industrial city due to its position between the markets of New York City and Philadelphia? More...