Marcus Garvey Park Panoramic Scene  


Marcus Garvey Park is one of the oldest public squares in Manhattan. Central to the life of Harlem for more than 150 years, it has served as a meeting place for neighbors, a front yard and play area for schoolchildren, and a holy place for members of local churches. Known as Mount Morris Park for more than a hundred years, it was originally part of the estate of Metje Cornelius Kortright. The name Morris became attached to the site by the 1830s; possible sources include Robert H. Morris, elected mayor in 1841, and a family affiliated with a racetrack that once operated nearby.



A scene linking a panorama taken from high up in the park to one at street level (to the West)


More on the park's history: The park itself dates back to the 1811 Commissioners' Plan for Manhattan, which called for a square in a slightly different location, between 6th and 7th Avenues and West 117th and West 121st Streets. The prospect of breaking through rocky Mount Morris led the City to build the new square there instead. Mount Morris Square opened on December 1, 1840.The park remained unimproved for three decades. A park design by the City's Chief Landscape Gardener, Ignatz A. Pilat, was built from 1867 to 1871 and remained intact until the 1930s. At that time Parks Commissioner Robert Moses, with the help of the Federal Works Progress Administration, installed playgrounds and a system of stone walls, terraces and stairs that remains in place today.In the mid-1960s the park again underwent dramatic changes. The City constructed a pool, a new recreation center and an amphitheater where Harlem residents continue to enjoy outdoors summer performances. The park was renamed by the City Council in honor of the black nationalist leader Marcus Garvey in 1973. 


6th grader Cory tells of a science experiment conducted in Marcus Garvey Park a few years ago