ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Visiting Rouses Point, New York: With Its Marina Facilities on Lake Champlain

Updated on April 13, 2019
State flag of New York
State flag of New York | Source
Rouses Point
Rouses Point | Source
Gaines Marina, Rouses Point
Gaines Marina, Rouses Point | Source

Its militarily strategic waters scrutinized by President James Monroe and Secretary of State Daniel Webster

[This article deals principally with some geographical and historical features of the village of Rouses Point, on Lake Champlain. For information about the services of the marinas cited, contact should be made directly with their respective managements.]

The village of Rouses Point, in New York's Clinton County, is in a unique location. To the north, immediately adjacent to Rouses Point is the municipality of Lacolle, Quebec, Canada, over the 45th Parallel. To the east, across Lake Champlain, in the State of Vermont, is the village of Alburgh. Thus in multiple ways Rouses Point is at a geographical extremity.

As such, historically it has been defined by the waters of Lake Champlain., being the final berth on the west bank of the Lake prior to its waters passing into Canada and the Richelieu River.

A number of marinas are in service at Rouses Point; these include Gaines Marina (1) and Barcombs Marina (2), both of which supply various services to the boating community.

Interestingly, the world's second commercial steamboat was launched on Lake Champlain, with Rouses Point said to have been its first port of call.

Thus already two centuries ago, Rouses Point was a busy locality; US President James Monroe is reputed to have spent the night in 1818 at the house of Edward Thurber (3).

A note on the name of the village is also interesting: the person commemorated in the name was not — as it would at first appear — one Rouse, but rather, Jacques Roux, from French Canada, whose support for the American Patriots in the War of Independence led him to fight alongside them. Thus, 'Rouses' is really an Anglicized version of the perhaps orthographically more awkward 'Roux's'.

During the War of 1812, fortifications were built at what was believed to be the border between the United States and Lower Canada; and inspection of these fortifications were made by President James Monroe in 1817. However, further calculation found that the site of these fortifications which dated from the War of 1812 were slightly over the border in Lower Canada. Thus, after US Secretary of State Daniel Webster, serving in the Administration of US President John Tyler, signed the Webster-Ashburton Treaty in 1842, the adjustment of the border between the United States and British North America was settled so that a further fort was built at what was known as Island Point.

While scarcely believable now, in the 1840s it was believed that New York was vulnerable to attack from British North America, and so what was already a nationwide series of defensive forts known as the Third System (4) was extended to Island Point, close to the village of Rouses Point, on the site of the fortifications dating from the War of 1812. Thus, from 1846 onwards, what became known as Fort Montgomery (after American General Richard Montgomery who served in the American War of Independence) was built up in to a strongly fortified military complex with a moat.

The expected attack did indeed come from nearby British North America — but on the other side of Lake Champlain at St. Albans, Vermont, in October 1864, when Confederate forces based on British territory attempted to seize the town.

Fort Montgomery (5) was sold by the United States government in 1926, as the threat of water-borne attack had long receded. It passed into private hands, and has in recent years been the subject of negotiations involving the Preservation League of New York State. While not open to the public, some of the substantial remains of the Fort are visible from the Rouses Point Bridge / Korean War Veterans Memorial Bridge to the south.

Thus it may be seen that the military significance of the waters around Rouses Point has waned, but waters still strongly define the locality.

Another significant historical note is that the US Border Inspection Station at Rouses Point, New York — at the Rouses Point–Lacolle 223 Border Crossing — a Georgian Revival building by Lewis A. Simon and James A. Wetmore, dating from 1913, was added in 2014 to the US National Register of Historic Places.

April 13, 2019


(1) See also:

(2) See also:

(3) Edward Thurber's residence at Rouses Point was recorded as being a frame house, built by the owner.

(4) Among these Third System forts were included Fort Sumter, Charleston, South Carolina — famous in the American Civil War — and Fort Alcatraz, California — later renowned as a high security prison.

(5) See also:

Some sourcing: Wikipedia.

Rouses Point Bridge and Barcomb’s Marina
Rouses Point Bridge and Barcomb’s Marina | Source
Looking north at Rouses Point, NY on US11.
Looking north at Rouses Point, NY on US11. | Source

Also worth seeing

Various localities in the surrounding Clinton County, New York, may be good bases to explore Adirondack Park.

Malone, New York (distance: 50.1 miles / 80.6 kilometres); here, US Vice President William Wheeler (cited by John F. Kennedy in 'Profiles in Courage', 1956), a historic resident of Malone, is commemorated; there is also some significant ecclesiastical architecture.

In Alburgh, Vermont (distance: 7.3 miles / 11.7 kilometres) the Welcome Center on Route 2 has some interesting historical plaques relating to Samuel de Champlain, the beginnings of the state of Vermont and a Cold War missile site.

At Fairfield, Vermont (distance: 35.5 miles / 57.1 kilometres) is commemorated the President Arthur State Historic Site, where Chester A. Arthur was born in 1829.

Montreal, Quebec, Canada (distance: 46.3 miles / 74.5 kilometres). The architectural and cultural attractions of Montreal are too numerous to mention here, but of special note, among many others, are the domed Bonsecours Market (Marché Bonsecours), dating from 1847, which was a venue used to house the Parliament of United Canada, prior to Confederation. The Notre-Dame Basilica (Basilique Notre-Dame de Montréal ) was built mainly between 1824 and 1829; many Montrealers attend annual performances of Handel's 'Messiah' there. The Olympic Stadium (Stade Olympique) in the Hochelaga-Maisonneuve district, used for the 1976 Olympics, has the world's tallest inclined tower, at 175 metres.


How to get there:

Plattsburgh International Airport (distance to Rouses Point : 30.5 miles / 49.1 kilometres), where car rental is available, is served by a variety of airlines, including US Air, which flies to Boston, with many North American connections. I-87 and I-89 extend to the US- Canada border on the New York and Vermont sides of Lake Champlain respectively. Please check with the airline or your travel agent for up to date information. You are advised to refer to appropriate consular sources for any special border crossing arrangements which may apply to citizens of certain nationalities.

MJFenn is an independent travel writer based in Ontario, Canada.

US President James Monroe portrait by William James Hubbard, ca. 1832.
US President James Monroe portrait by William James Hubbard, ca. 1832. | Source
Portrait of Daniel Webster
Portrait of Daniel Webster | Source
Map showing the location of this village within Clinton County, New York. Data source: 2010 U.S. census
Map showing the location of this village within Clinton County, New York. Data source: 2010 U.S. census | Source


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • MJFenn profile imageAUTHOR


      10 months ago

      Liz Westwood: There is indeed a lot of history at this pivotal location of New York State, Thank-you for your comment.

    • Eurofile profile image

      Liz Westwood 

      10 months ago from UK

      The historical background to this article is interesting.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)