Prehistoric Inwood: Mastodons in Our Midst

Inwood New York City Mastodon

In warm weather the Dyckman Strip is a lively scene replete with music, the clink of cocktail glasses, laughter and animated conversation.  As brunch winds down, the crowd migrates west to the marina, on the banks of the Hudson River, to marvel at the view—a nearly unblemished vista that has changed little since Henry Hudson […]

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Miramar Saltwater Pool

Miramar Saltwater Pool, Inwood, New York City, thumbnail

“They played music, too. If you went under, you couldn’t hear it, and when you surfaced, there it was! Walking home (I lived on Post) I remember that heavy, exhausted feeling, and also feeling like I was still in the water. We were lucky to have had such a fun place to enjoy the summer.” […]

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Inwood’s Kingsbridge Power House: Manhattan on a Nickel

Thumbnail image for Inwood’s Kingsbridge Power House: Manhattan on a Nickel

On the northern end of Manhattan, just east of Broadway between 216th and 218th Streets, across from the Twin Donut, in the shadow of the elevated subway rails, sits a rather non-descript beige brick facility owned by the New York City Transit Authority. Today the complex, known as the Kingsbridge Bus Depot, is used primarily […]

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Asylums on Inwood Hill

Asylums on Inwood Hill

A century ago  asylums and institutions lined the ridge of Inwood Hill.  Inside these fortress-like structures, all demolished by Robert Moses in the 1930′s, tortured, long-dead souls were kept under lock and key.  Some were criminals, some were inebriates and drug addicts, others had the mere misfortune of suffering from tuberculosis.   All were outcasts, banished […]

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Inwood’s First Selfie: The Work of Vermilyea Avenue Photographer William Davis Hassler

William Davis Hassler

Selfie: “A photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone or webcam and uploaded to a social media website.”  -Oxford English Dictionary In 2013 the Oxford English Dictionary officially recognized the word “selfie”, but as early as 1913 Inwood photographer William Davis Hassler was perfecting the technique. Hassler, a skilled […]

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History of Inwood’s Isham Park

Isham Park, Inwood, New York City

In 1862 a businessman named William Bradley Isham rented a summer retreat in northern Manhattan. He fell in love with the place and returned two years later to purchase the property. What follows is an exhaustive photo essay describing the origins of Isham Park.

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Inwood’s Mission of the Redeemer

Mission of the Redeemer from 1922 Bromley Map.  Inwood, New York City.

Not long ago, before a presentation of Inwood History Night, regular attendee Michael Frank turned up with a massive ­­­­­1922 edition of Bromley’s atlas of New York.  Scanning through sturdy volume of thirty-two beautifully hand colored linen plates, I noticed the outline of a structure located not far the site of the tennis courts in […]

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Inwood’s 215th Street Incinerator Smokestacks

Inwood Department of Sanitation on 215th Street

“When the Mayor of New York dedicated the new incinerator at 215th Street and Ninth Avenue a little while ago, he said plainly that he didn’t like it. Perhaps he was justified in his opinion of it as a piece of sanitary engineering, but when he went on to say that it looked ungainly and […]

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