The Hooks of Upper Manhattan

Downtown has Corlears Hook. Brooklyn has Red Hook (and once had Yellow Hook). 

Upper Manhattan also had some Hooks—like Tubby Hook, sometimes called Tubby’s Hook. It was the 18th and 19th century name for a section of Inwood between Fort Tryon Park and Inwood Hill Park.

An 1894 New York Times article describes it like this:

[“View, Tubby Hook and Spuyten Duyvel Creek,” from the NYPL in the 1860s or 1870s]

“A little below Riverdale, at a point near Inwood, there is a projection known as Tubby’s Hook, where the water is deep enough to allow large steamers to pass quite close to it. Tubby’s Hook is also a resort for fishermen.”

It’s a funny name that’s probably a bastardization of the last name of Peter Ubrecht, a wealthy 18th century resident.

Jeffrey’s Hook is another precipice jutting into the Hudson. It’s under the George Washington Bridge and now known as the location of the Little Red Lighthouse, Manhattan’s only lighthouse.

But Jeffrey’s Hook played a big role in colonial history: It’s where Washington and his troops traveled back and forth to Fort Lee during the Revolutionary War.

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2 Responses to “The Hooks of Upper Manhattan”

  1. Rick W Says:

    The picture of the “little red lighthouse” brought back a memory the way the smell or taste of something sometimes can.

    I remember on the program Captain Kangaroo when I was a child they would read the book and show illustrations for the story. One of the illustrations was very similar to the photograph you show in your story.

  2. wildnewyork Says:

    What’s great is that the Parks Department, which manages the lighthouse, opens it to visitors once a year during Open House New York in October. I highly urge you to check it out this fall–I did a few years back and it was terrific.

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