In The Hudson From Wilderness to the Sea, Benson Lossing comments on the landing at West Point:

"The road from the plain to the landing at West Point was cut from the steep rocky bank of the river, at a heavy expense to the government. The wharf is spacious, and there a sentinel was continually posted, with a slate and pencil, to record the names of all persons who arrive and depart. This was for the Superintendent, by which means he is informed daily of the arrival of any persons to whom he might wish to extend personal or professional courtesies."