What it Took to Build the Erie Canal
It took a great deal of vision, determination, and ingenuity. The vision of De Witt Clinton made the project possible. No one thought the canal could be built, but he convinced the State legislature to go ahead with it. The canal would have fallen apart without the engineering breakthroughs. It also took $7,500,000 (financed through state legislature, bank loans, and some federal aid), and 8 years of back breaking work done by as many as 40,000 men. These men came from a variety of places. Some came from the area of New York, some were Irish immigrants looking for work, and as many as 9,000 men came from Ontario County.