Posts Tagged ‘Inwood’

Old-school subway signage

December 9, 2009

The MTA should bring back some of these vintage posts and signs—they’re such a cool throwback to old New York. These lantern-like beacons guard the Fifth Avenue and 59th Street station:

Vintage signage on the New York Life building, on Park Avenue South—important enough to have its own subway entrance. Interborough Rapid Transit is today’s 4, 5, and 6 line.

I hope the MTA does not replace or tidy up this weathered, slightly rusted subway post, in Inwood:

New York war hero: Margaret Corbin

May 24, 2009

It’s Memorial Day weekend—an appropriate time to remember Margaret Corbin, considered by some to be the first female American soldier and someone whose name shows up all over Northern Manhattan.

MargaretcorbinCorbin was the wife of a Virginia farmer who had enlisted in the Pennsylvania state artillery to fight for the colonists during the Revolutionary War. Rather than stay at home alone, she joined his company as a “camp follower,” as other wives were called, cooking and nursing wounded soldiers.

On November 16, 1776, their company was stationed at Fort Washington—where Fort Tryon Park is today—to help stave off a sneak attack launched by British and Hessian forces. After her husband was killed instantly while operating a canon, Margaret stepped into his place and began firing. Fortryonplaque

Though the four-hour battle ended with the enemy capturing Fort Washington, and she was severely wounded, Margaret supposedly proved to be one of the best gunners on the colonists’ side. 

She never fully recovered from her injuries and was eventually given $30 plus a lifetime disability pension.

Today, a plaque in Fort Tryon Park honors her bravery. And Northern Manhattan near The Cloisters is home to Margaret Corbin Drive and Margaret Corbin Circle.

The farm animals of New York

July 25, 2008

Since the early days of Central Park, sheep grazed in—where else—the Sheep Meadow. Lazing around munching grass all day in New York City? Not a bad way to pass the time.

Too bad the flock was kicked out and relocated to Prospect Park in 1934, where they joined a different flock of sheep that had been grazing Long Meadow since at least 1922, when park commissioner John Harmon brought them in.

Sheep weren’t the only hoofed creatures snacking on New York City. This undated photo shows cows chilling out in Inwood. Hard to believe Manhattan was once so pastoral.