Kingston is a city in and the county seat of Ulster County, New York, United States. It is 91 mi north of New York City and 59 mi south of Albany. It became New York's first capital in 1777, and was burned by the British after the Battles of Saratoga. In the 19th century, the city became an important transport hub after the discovery of natural cement in the region, and had both railroad and canal connections. Passenger rail service has since ceased, and many of the older buildings are part of historic districts, such as the Stockade District uptown and the Rondout-West Strand Historic District downtown.