March is Women’s History Month, so I wondered how many sisters were honored with a place name in NYC. I love that there’s a story behind every place name in NYC. This post is about names in Manhattan.
All of my info in this post comes from the terrific book by Henry Moscow called The Street Book. I heartily recommend it for history buffs. I have no connection to Henry Moscow or his publisher. I learned of this book from an RDNY.com co-worker (thank you, Mark S.) who recommended it to me.
Abingdon Square, West Village: Named for Lady Abingdon, who was born here as Charlotte Warren. Charlotte’s father was very wealthy and the city fathers named streets in the Village after his three daughters in the 1700s.
Bethune Street, West Village: Named for the reformer Johanna Graham Bethune, who co-founded the New York Orphan Asylum and founded the first school for girls in the early 1800s.
Cabrini Boulevard, Hudson Heights: Named for Maria Francesca Cabrini. In 1946, she became the first American canonized as a Roman Catholic saint. She’s the patron saint of immigrants.
There’s more to read if you click here.
Coenties Slip and Coenties Alley, Wall Street: Named for Antje and Conraet Ten Eyck, who owned the property in lower Manhattan back when NYC was New Amsterdam. “Coentes” is a combination of “Conraet’s and Anthje’s” in Dutch.
Jumel Place and Jumel Terrace, Washington Heights: Named for Stephen Jumel who was famous in NYC society in the late 1700s for being married to the beautiful and (ahem) scandalous (that’s how they described her in polite society) Elizabeth Bowen. I count this as a 1/2 honor because Mrs. Jumel is the one historians remember, not her husband, and, heck, it’s the 21st Century and sex scandals are so ho-hum these days that I think we can admire a woman for marrying well and not wisely. In 1833, as a widow, she married her second husband, Aaron Burr, the man who killed Alexander Hamilton (the man on the $10 bill) in a duel in Weehawken, NJ in 1804. She divorced Burr in 1836, and his ghost supposedly haunts the house to this day. Her house is now a museum and is the oldest residence in Manhattan.
Szold Place, East Village: Named for Henrietta Szold, the founder of Hadassah Women in the early 1900s, the largest Jewish organization in American history.
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