Tompkin's Square Park Panoramic Scene 


tsquare-scene.mov 

 

Tompkins Square Park is a 10.5 acre  public park in the Alphabet City section of the East Village neighborhood in the borough of Manhattan in New York City. It is square in shape, and is bounded on the north by East 10th Street, on the east by Avenue B, on the south by East 7th Street, and on the west by Avenue A. St. Marks Place abuts the park to the west. The park is named for Daniel D. Tompkins (1774–1825), Vice President of the United States under President James Monroe and the Governor of New York from 1807 until 1817. Once a salt marsh owned by Peter Stuyvesant, the park was drained and developed in 1834. After being the site of bread riots in 1857 and draft riots in 1863, it was leveled in 1866 and turned into a National Guard parade ground. Neighborhood protests resulted in the re-establishment of the park by 1879; part of the redesign was by Frederick Law Olmstead, but most of his plan was not implemented. By 1916 a detective identified the park as "a hangout for petty strong-arm men and petty

 thieves." Reconstructed by Robert Moses in 1936.

 

This scene links a panorama from mid park (approx 8th street) to Ave B. and 8th Street to the east. Visible in the Avenue B pan is the historic St. Brigid's Church (which is struggling to survive the wrecker's ball) and the Newsboys' and Bootblacks' Lodging House on the corner of 295 8th St): Formally known as the Tompkins Square Lodging House for Boys and Industrial School, Childrens Aid Society, this imposing building was designed in 1887 by Central Park co-architect Calvert Vaux. Later a synagogue, Talmud Torah Darch Noam; then the East Side Hebrew Institute, which future actors Ron Silver and Paul Reiser both attended. Now apartments.

 


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6th grader Cory goes to school in Harlem but lives near Tompkins Square 

 

 I created an audio file telling about my connection to the Avenue B panorama part of this scene. In the 1950's the old Avenue B-East Broadway bus would stop at 7th Street and my mother and I would walk 3 blocks east to visit my cousins, my aunt and uncle and my grandma, Bobbi.