Thursday, October 17, 2013

New York Ghost Stories: Henry Hudson, the Original “Flying Dutchman”

New York Ghost Stories: Henry Husdson
New York State traditionally has been torn in rivalry between “upstate” and “downstate.” Henry Hudson is both a downstate and an upstate ghost.

Hudson was an English explorer working for the Dutch West India Company. He was the first European to discover the island of Manhattan and the Hudson River in 1609. His discovery of beavers and other fur-bearing animals led the Dutch to come back to trade with the Indians and settle down to farm the land.

He was such a poor master of human relations that every one of his crews in his four voyages mutinied against him. During his last voyage, his crew set him adrift amid the ice floes of Hudson Bay, where he perished. None of the mutineers was punished for their evil deed.

Ever since then, Hudson has been condemned to voyage around the world in search of justice. When severe weather occurs, mariners spot him being blown about by the storm. He has been spotted in or near New York Harbor on more than one occasion. 
A replica of Henry Hudson's ship

Legend has it that every twenty years, since 1609, Henry Hudson and his crew return to bowl ninepins with the gnomes of the Catskills Mountains. The crash of the pins is heard in the form of thunder. Sometimes this thunder is so loud that it can be heard all the way down the Hudson River Valley in New York City.

During stormy weather, Captain Henry Hudson may appear on his ship, the Half Moon, riding out a storm in New York Harbor. Hudson is the original "Flying Dutchman," doomed to meander the seven seas for eternity.

For more New York ghost stories, join a Wall Street Walks downtown Ghost tour!