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Today, Syracuse is located at the intersection of Interstates 81 and 90, and its airport is the largest in the region.
Syracuse is home to Syracuse University, a major research university, as well as several smaller colleges and professional schools. The Syracuse area was first seen by Europeans when French missionaries came to the area in the 1600s.
It is the economic and educational hub of Central New York, a region with over a million inhabitants.
Syracuse is also well-provided with convention sites, with a downtown convention complex.
In 2010, Forbes rated Syracuse 4th in the top 10 places in the U. At the invitation of the Onondaga Nation, one of the five constituent members of the Iroquois confederacy, a group of Jesuit priests, soldiers, and coureurs des bois (including Pierre Esprit Radisson) set up a mission, known as Sainte Marie among the Iroquois, or Ste.
Marie de Gannentaha, on the northeast shore of Onondaga Lake.
Jesuit missionaries visiting the Syracuse region in the mid 1600s reported salty brine springs around the southern end of "Salt Lake", known today as Onondaga Lake.
The 1788 Treaty of Fort Stanwix, and the subsequent designation of the area by the state of New York as the Onondaga Salt Springs Reservation provided the basis for commercial salt production from the late 1700s through the early 1900s; brine from wells that tapped into halite (common salt) beds in the Salina shale near Tully, New York, 15 miles south of the city were developed in the 19th century.