16th Annual Tribute Ceremony

for Unsung Civic Hero

Andrew H. Green


SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 10 | 2:00p | ANDREW H. GREEN PARK | FREE

Please join me, Michael Miscione, the Manhattan Borough Historian, and other history lovers as we raise a toast of apple cider to Andrew H. Green (1820-1903), the unsung 19th century master planner, reformer, and preservationist whose accomplishments transformed New York into a world-class city. The ceremony will take place at the yet unfinished Andrew H. Green Park on the Upper East Side in Manhattan. I will preside over the festivities. Our guest speaker will be Fran Leadon, author of the recently published Broadway: A History of New York City in Thirteen Miles. We will also hear from local community board member Barry Schneider for an update on the progress of the park's design and construction.


WHO WAS ANDREW H. GREEN?

Prof. Kenneth T. Jackson, editor of The Encyclopedia of New York City, has called Mr. Green, "arguably the most important leader in Gotham's long history." During his fifty-year career Mr. Green steered the creation of some of New York City's foremost parks, cultural institutions, and public works. He rescued the city from bankruptcy after the Tweed Ring scandals and pioneered the historic preservation movement. Most importantly, he masterminded the 1898 consolidation of the five boroughs, a measure that expanded the city's size five-fold and earned him the nickname "The Father of Greater New York."

Andrew H. Green, c. 1870
Fran Leadon

GUEST SPEAKER FRAN LEADON

In the 1860s the Central Park Commission, led by Mr. Green, was empowered to modify the street plan of the Upper West Side. Among other things Mr. Green rerouted and straightened Broadway (aka The Boulevard). Our guest speaker, Fran Leadon, whose highly praised new book Broadway discusses this period, will share his thoughts about Mr. Green and his planning rationale.

Clyde Haberman, writing in The New York Times, described Broadway as, "a whirl of characters: architects and landlords, capitalists and unionists, reformers and traditionalists, visionaries and charlatans. It is a whirl, too, of events like ticker-tape parades, civic battles, financial booms and inevitable busts."

Mr. Leadon is an architect as well as an author. Prior to writing Broadway he was co-author (with Norval White and Elliot Willensky) of the fifth edition of the AIA Guide to New York City. He was born and raised in Gainesville, Florida, and graduated from the University of Florida in 1991. He did graduate work at Yale, graduating in 1994, and moved to Brooklyn in 1996. In 2000 he joined the faculty at the City College of New York, where he teaches design studios and history courses in the School of Architecture and seminars in the Macaulay Honors College. More about Mr. Leadon and his book in the links below.

LEARN ABOUT THE PARK'S PROGRESS

The Andrew H. Green Park site was designated for Mr. Green about a decade ago, but the physical transformation of the land into a real recreational green space has been slow. For years all there was was a dog run; construction on the other sections was delayed because of the deteriorating pilings that held up the ground. I am happy to report that things are moving forward. A new section -- the parcel under the large swirling overhead metal sculpture -- was opened last year. Barry Schneider, the chair of the 197-A Committee of Manhattan Community Board 8, will update us about the design and construction of the remaining parts of the park.

EVENT DETAILS

  • Andrew H. Green Park (location, directions, and link to map below)
  • Saturday, November 10, 2018
  • 2:00p
  • Free. No reservations required. Invite your friends!
  • Light refreshments will be served.
  • Directions:

The park is located on the East River, on the uptown side of the Queensboro Bridge. From York Avenue and East 60th Street walk up the long ramp that crosses over the FDR Drive. Meet under the giant curving overheard metal sculpture at the top of the ramp. There should be signs to guide you.

  • Map:

https://goo.gl/maps/iKHj8r5QzJu

  • If you have questions or need more info, email Michael Miscione at:

mmiscione@manhattanbp.nyc.gov

  • More about Mr. Leadon and his book:

Fran Leadon's website:

https://franleadon.com

Mr. Haberman's review of Broadway:

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/30/books/review/fran-leadon-broadway.html

The book is available from Amazon:

https://www.amazon.com/Broadway-History-York-Thirteen-Miles/dp/039324010X/


NOTE: Copy and paste the above web addresses into your browser bar if the links do not work.