Where was “Boys Lake” in Central Park?

Some areas and structures in Central Park still hang on to their antiquated names, such as Scholar’s Gate (at Fifth Avenue and 60th Street) and the Ladies’ Pavillion (that cute Victorian-era shelter in the center of the park).

But I’d never heard of Boys Lake until I came across this postcard. Looks like it’s where the northernmost tip of the Lake is now. 

The postcard also offers a glimpse of pre-apartment building lined Fifth Avenue as well as Temple Beth-El, a gorgeous, Moorish-looking synogogue that once gleamed on Fifth Avenue at 76th Street.

Built in 1891, it was demolished in the 1940s. An apartment house now occupies the site.

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5 Responses to “Where was “Boys Lake” in Central Park?”

  1. Daniel Hetteix Says:

    That, quite simply, looks like Conservatory Pond, complete with the old service building on the far side that now houses a small snacks counter. It was probably named “Boys Lake” after all the small sailing ships that boys would float out on the lake, and many still do (although much less gender-specifically) today. This is notable, though, in it is pre-Alice in Wonderland statue, which would be eventually built on the far left grassy knoll.

  2. Force Tube Avenue Says:


    I think the “Boys Lake” is today’s toy boat basin, with a gender-neutral name. It’s pretty much in the same place.

  3. Force Tube Avenue Says:

    And, here is a picture of the toy boat basin, though not from the same perspective.


  4. wildnewyork Says:

    The toy boat pond, of course. I wonder if they dropped the Boys name in part because so many grown men are the ones actually bringing the toy ships there…

  5. petey Says:

    the surrounding grounds much more grown-over now, as is all of central park.
    i used to swim (disallowed) and play hockey (allowed) here.

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