The Donagn Charter is a very important charter to the city of Albany. This is the charter that incorporates the city of Albany, NY as a city. The charter is named after Governor Dongan and is the oldest existing city charter still in effect in the United States and possibly the entire Western Hemisphere, being finalized on July 25, 1686.
The Patroon family, the Van Rensselaers, were encouraged by Dongan to release all claims to Albany and forfeit a strip of land one mile wide and 16 miles long to Albany. At the time, Albany consisted of 500 residents living in 140 houses. In July 1686, Pieter Schuyler and Philip Livingston headed to New York to received the charter for Albany. On July 28, 1686, the charter was read aloud to the citizens of Albany.
As of 2011, nearly 100,000 people have called Albany home and many call the city of Albany the city where they work. Albany sits on the west bank of the Hudson River and its points of interest include the New York State Museum, the Albany Institute of History and Art, the Empire State Plaza, the Times Union Center (formerly the Pepsi Arena), the Egg Theater, the Palace Theater, the Washington Avenue Armory, the USS Slater, and many others. It is home to such colleges as SUNY Albany, Albany Law, Albany School of Pharmacy, Russel Sage College, Maria College, Sage College of Albany, Sienna College, Maria College, and others. It is home to shopping centers such as Stuyvesant Plaza, Crossgates Mall, and Colonie Center. It is also home to the famous Washington Park and other historical landmarks.