New York City is located in the state of New York. Although it gives its name to the state it is not the capital city. It is the largest city in America since 1790 with over 8.2 million residents. For more than a century, it has been one of the world's major centers of commerce and finance. The city is also a major center for foreign affairs, hosting the headquarters of the United Nations.
New York City comprises five boroughs, each of which is coextensive with a county: The Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens and Staten Island. Many of the city's neighborhoods and landmarks are known around the world. The Statue of Liberty greeted millions of immigrants as they came to America in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, at Ellis Island, a small part of which lies within the city. Wall Street, in Lower Manhattan, has been a dominant global financial center since World War II and is home to the New York Stock Exchange. The city has been home to several of the tallest buildings in the world, including the Empire State Building and the twin towers of the World Trade Center, which were destroyed in the September 11, 2001 attacks.
At the time of its European discovery in 1524 by Giovanni da Verrazzano, an Italian explorer in the service of the French crown, the region was inhabited by about 5,000 Lenape Native Americans. European settlement began with the founding of a Dutch fur trading settlement, called New Amsterdam, on the southern tip of Manhattan in 1614. In 1664, the English conquered the city and renamed it "New York" after the English Duke of York and Albany. By 1700, the Lenape population was diminished to 200. New York City grew in importance as a trading port while under British rule. The city emerged as the theater for a series of major battles known as the New York Campaign during the American Revolutionary War. The Continental Congress met in New York City and in 1789 the first President of the United States, George Washington, was inaugurated at Federal Hall on Wall Street.
New York City is located at the mouth of the Hudson River, which feeds into a naturally sheltered harbor and then into the Atlantic Ocean. It has helped the city grow in significance as a trading city. Much of New York is built on the three islands of Manhattan, Staten Island, and Long Island, making land scarce and encouraging a high population density. The Hudson River flows through the Hudson Valley into New York Bay. Between New York City and Troy, New York, the river is an estuary. The Hudson separates the city from New Jersey. The East River, actually a tidal strait, flows from Long Island Sound and separates the Bronx and Manhattan from Long Island. The Harlem River, another tidal strait between the East and Hudson Rivers, separates Manhattan from the Bronx. The city's land has been altered considerably by human intervention, with substantial land reclamation along the waterfronts since Dutch colonial times. Reclamation is most notable in Lower Manhattan, with developments such as Battery Park City in the 1970s and 1980s. Some of the natural variations in topography have been evened out, particularly in Manhattan. The highest point in the city is Todt Hill on Staten Island, which at 409.8 ft above sea level is the highest point on the Eastern Seaboard south of Maine.
Although located at about the same latitude as the much warmer European cities of Naples and Madrid, New York has a humid continental climate resulting from prevailing wind patterns that bring cool air from the interior of the North American continent. New York City has cold winters but the city's coastal position keeps temperatures slightly warmer than inland regions, helping to moderate the amount of snow which averages 25 to 35 inches each year. Spring and autumn in New York City are erratic, and can range from cold and snowy to hot and humid, although they can also be cold or cool and rainy. Summer in New York City is hot and humid.
The city is also known as,
The Big Apple,
The City That Never Sleeps,
The Capital of The World - Novum Caput Mundi, The Empire City,
The City So Nice They Named It Twice.