The U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York is the oldest military base in America. It describes itself as the oldest continuously occupied regular army post in the United States. The military base is also described by the US Army as both the oldest continuously occupied military post in the United States and America's oldest U.S. Army Garrison.
Known as The United States Military Academy (USMA), West Point, Army or Army West Point, The Academy or simply The Point, is a four-year coeducational federal service academy located in West Point, New York, in Orange County. It is approximately 16,000 acres in size. The student body numbers approximately 4,300. In addition to the Corps of Cadets, West Point is home to approximately 1,200 active duty soldiers and 2,300 family members.
The United States Military Academy was established in 1802, but West Point had a major role in our nation's history during the American Revolution. It's role in America's history, dating back to the Revolutionary War, was when both sides realized the strategic importance of the commanding plateau on the west bank of the Hudson River. American soldiers first occupied West Point on January 27, 1778. General George Washington considered West Point to be the most important strategic position in America. Washington personally selected Thaddeus Kosciuszko, one of the heroes of Saratoga, to design the fortifications for West Point in 1778, and Washington transferred his headquarters to West Point in 1779. Continental soldiers built forts, batteries and redoubts and extended a 150-ton iron chain across the Hudson to control river traffic. Fortress West Point was never captured by the British, despite Benedict Arnold's treason.
West Point is the both the longest and oldest continuously occupied military post in America. Several soldiers and legislators, including Washington, Knox, Hamilton and John Adams, desiring to eliminate America's wartime reliance on foreign engineers and artillerists, urged the creation of an institution devoted to the arts and sciences of warfare. President Thomas Jefferson signed legislation establishing the United States Military Academy in 1802. He took this action after ensuring that those attending the Academy would be representative of a democratic society. You can visit this oldest military post in America by taking private tours.
Just 15 miles west is the oldest winery in America.
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