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Crown Point


Crown Point commands a narrow pass on Lake Champlain, an ideal place to control passage on the lake. The Dutch, French, British, and Americans occupied the point successively in colonial times. Anyone journeying through the wilderness stopped here. Today, visitors crossing the bridge from Vermont can stop for information, visit the Forts at Crown Point, or settle in at the campground.

Further south, Putnam's Creek forms the axis of the town's post-Revolution history. Settlers built gristmills, sawmills, and forges at the waterfalls, creating five hamlets climbing up the course of the creek. Hammond's Corners evolved into the town center. The Essex County Fish Hatchery welcomes visitors at Crown Point Center. Penfield Museum tells the story of the Crown Point Iron Works in Ironville.

On the lakeshore, Monitor Bay Park recalls the use of Crown Point iron for armor on the Civil War warship USS Monitor. The last furnaces to smelt iron in Crown Point went out of blast here in 1892. Now campers and boaters reclaim the former industrial site. Nothing remains of the Feldspar Mill south of town except the concrete storage bins built into the cliff at Spar Bay.