Mind-Blowing Facts You Need To Know About The History Of Queens, NY

Mind-Blowing Facts You Need To Know About The History Of Queens, NY

Queens is the most ethnically diverse borough of New York but that’s not the only reason this place is worth our attention. This place also happens to have a long history that goes way back to colonial times. Geographically speaking, Queens is part of Long Island and was first inhabited by the Native Lenape American people. 

The Lenape people mostly lived in small bands and led an agricultural way of living. There were numerous bays and creeks in Queens that provided the Lenape people with resources for fishing and other livelihood needs. 

Want to know more about the history of Queens, here’s the list of things you should know. 

Where Queens Came From

As part of the New Netherlands colony, the Dutch and English colonizers came to Queens along with the settlements in Maspeth and Vlissingen which are now Flushing. 

In the 1650s there was a signing of the Flushing Remonstrance, a provision that focused on freedom of religion. In a way, this was deemed as an attack on the American colonies at that time. 

In 1683, Queens came under the ruling of the original New York colony. Under the English rule, the place was called Queens County. 

There was a revolutionary war wherein Queens remained under English rulership. The battle mostly occurred in Brooklyn with Queens only paying a minor part. 

By 1800, Queens remained mostly agricultural. Years after, Long Island City was formed separating it from the town of Elmhurst. 

When Queens Became Part Of New York City

The Queens borough became part of New York City on January 1, 1898. New transportation routes were introduced in the years that came by and thus transforming Queens from a sleepy borough into a much more sophisticated one. 

In 1909, the Queensland Borough Bridge opened which was followed by a rail tunnel under the East River in 1910. 

There was also the IRT Flushing subway line that connected Manhattan and Queens in 1915. Combined with the rise of automobiles, the population of Queens quickly doubled in just about a decade. By 1930, Queens was already populated by over one million people. 

Queens In The Recent Years

The 1970s and 2000s have been recorded in Queen’s history as the Great Immigrant experience. 

The Immigration and Nationality Act of 1656 brought legal immigration worldwide. It wasn’t long before Queens became the destination of most immigrants. From then on, most of Queens’ residents have been from overseas with over a hundred languages spoken. 

Queens was struck with a tragedy in the 2000s. The 7/11 attacks have been brutal and cost the lives of many people. 

In November 2001, more than 200 people died when American Airlines Flight 587 in the rockaways. 

In October 2012, low-lying areas in Southern Queens were also devastated due to Sandystorm Sandy. There was also massive fire during the wake of the storm that swept the Breezy Point neighborhood that resulted to more than a hundred homes destroyed. 

Profound Things To Do In Queens, NY

Profound Things To Do In Queens, NY

When planning an after-work or weekend night out, it’s quite easy to fall back on Manhattan. After all, Manhattan is the place to go if you want a painless way to choose where to hang out. Manhattan has got everything from baseball games, far-flung boroughs, and sightseeing tours. 

But if you’ve already visited almost every other area in Manhattan, why not give Queens a try. Queens is New York’s largest borough. It’s also ethnically diverse and the birthplace of art luminaries. Another interesting story about Queens is that is often used as a backdrop for lots of popular TV shows. 

Queens is full of places that have seasoned many New Yorkers already but if it’s your first time to check this place out, we have a guide just for you. 

Hit The Dancefloor At The Art Museum

There’s an amazing go-to gallery in Midtown called the Museum of Modern Art and it has an extension in Queens – the MoMAPS1. 

If you’re a fan of art then you’ll, no doubt, love it but things get better when you love to dance because MoMAPS1 serves as a dancefloor during summer weekends. 

Warm-Up is one of its live, outdoor music series where you will get to witness electronic musicians play their beat. Sometimes well-known artists like Cardi B. and ASAP Ferg gets to perform there as well. 

Watch the NYC Marathon

There are two things you can do. If you’re looking to get some of your toxicities out of your system, it might be a good idea to join the marathon. Not only will it be a breeze of fresh air but you will also get to experience the Queen’s spirit. 

If you’re not much into running, you can always participate as a stand more by cheering for all the marathon runners. 

See Some Grand Slam Tennis

Do you know one thing Queens is famous for? Its tennis tournaments. There’s nothing like having to watch a tennis tournament in one of Queen’s courts live. 

Get A Drink At NYC’s Oldest Bar

If you have a thing for antique and historical places there’s no way you’re going to want to skip out on Neir’s Tavern

Neir’s Tavern believed to have opened during the 1820s making it the oldest operating bar in all five boroughs. It’s also the place where Goodfellas was filmed. 

Pay Your Respects To Any Loved One Or Famous People Who Died

This sounds a bit creepy but if you’ve ever wanted to pay respects to someone who recently passed away, whether this person is a loved one or a celebrity, Queens is the place to go. 

It’s home to about 15 cemeteries in New York, one of which was instituted way back in 1848 – Calvary Cemetery. Since New York is also the home country of lots of celebrities and significant personalities, you’ll find a lot of them buried there. 

Take A Dip In A Gigantic Pool

Some people say that the best things in life are free. If that’s the case you shouldn’t miss out on a chance to swim in the WPA era pool – the Astoria Pool in Astoria Park. 

And yes, it’s for free. It’s so large I guess you can say it’s the size of four Olympic pools placed side by side. 

The Astoria Pool served as the venue for the Summer Olympic Trials in 1936 and 1964. If you happen to stop by, you can also check out the Hell Gate Bridge. In the past, it was believed that this would be the last bridge to fall if humans were wiped out from the Earth. 

Sensational & Famous People From Queens, NY

Sensational & Famous People From Queens, NY

Queens is hailed for its diverse and adventurous ethnicity but that’s not the only reason Queens NY is so popular. Perhaps, one of the reasons the world started to take notice of this part of New York was because many celebrities and famous people from Queens emerged from there. 

Here are some of our favorites famous people from Queens 

Marie M. Daly

She was the first African-American woman to receive a P.h.D in Chemistry in the United States. Daly was born on April 16, 1921, in Queens. She went to Queens College in Flushing to get her bachelor’s degree in Flushing, followed by her master’s degree. 

Right after that, Daly headed to New York University to get started with her Master’s degree. However, it was in Columbia University where Daly actually got her P.h.D. 

Daly did not come from a well-off family. With that, she had to work as a lab assistant at Queens College so she could finance her graduate school studies. 

Christopher Walken

If you’re familiar with the films “The Deer Hunter”, “Ännie Hall”, and “The Dead Zone”, you will be glad to know that one of the actors in those movies Christopher Walken came from a neighborhood in Queens – Astoria. 

It was because of the childhood experiences that drove him into the entertainment industry. Walken said that it was quite normal for working-class people to send their kids to dancing school. You’d learn to tap dance, ballet, and acrobatics. Most of the time, you’d even get to sing and dance. 

50 Cent

50 Cent’s real name was Curtis James Jackson III. In his biography, it was quoted that Jackson was born in South Jamaica, Queens. 

Aside from being a well-known rapper, he is also an established businessman. You’ll read more about his life when you get a hold of his biography “From Pieces to Weight: Once Upon a Time in Southside Queens”, as well as the movie that was based on his life “Get Rich or Die Trying”.

Ronald William Artest

You might know him better as Metta World Peace. He is an American Professional Basketball coach and a former ballplayer.  

Right now, he works as the player development coach of the South Bay Lakers in the NBA G League. 

Artest grew up at the Queensbridge Houses and was the eldest out of six children. Later on, he went to St. John’s University in Queens. As he joined the school basketball team, he contributed to the achievement of the Red Storm in getting a 22-10 score, as well as advancing into the NCAA Tournament. 

Donald Trump

Of course, we can never discount the United States President – Donald Trump. Aside from being a president, he is also a well-known businessman, author, and politician. 

On June 14, 1946, Trump was born in Jamaica Estates, Queens. Before Trump could graduate from college, he began a career in real estate at his father’s company – Elizabeth Trump and Son. in 1197, Trump also played his own character at the “The Drew Carey Show”. The episode was called “New York and Queens.”

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Cool And Unusual Events In Queens, NY

Cool And Unusual Events In Queens, NY

You just decided to hit New York some of your oldest buddies but NYC is huge. Where do you plan to go? Here’s an idea. Why not give Queens a visit? 

Out of all the boroughs in New York, Queens is the most ethnically diverse. No matter what it is your friends want to do on your trip, Queens surely won’t disappoint. 

If you need some itinerary guidance, here are some cool events in Queens that you might find interesting and exciting. 

New York’s Infrastructure Creek Tour

Cool And Unusual Events In Queens, NY

Everyone notices the big establishments and parks that make New York bustling city that it is. However, there might be only a few people who notice the underbelly that makes up New York. 

The New York’s Infrastructure Creek Tour, you’ll get to explore NYC’s largest sewer plants, truss bridges, rail yards, tunnels, and many more. 

The tour spans 1.5 miles of Long Island and Greenpoint’s waterways. There will be a Superfund site, bridges, and rail yards with train along the way. 

If you’re a photography enthusiast, you might find this tour an interesting way to explore the obscure and industrial section of New York City. 

The Great Forgotten Garden Party

It’s easy to appreciate the external beauty of Queens the moment you step into its zone but what you really need to witness is the past beauty of the place that has long been forgotten. 

Due to the massive transformation of New York, it can be pretty hard to keep sight of the natural and agricultural beauty that it once possessed. 

One way to relive the past of Queens is to attend The Great Forgotten Garden Party. It might cost you $70 to enter the event but your bucks will be all worth it. 

Not only you will be able to cherish the natural beauty of the Queens borough, but the hosts will also take you back in time as they teach you a thing or two about the history and myth that lies in Queens. 

There’s a great stone wall overlooking the Hudson River. Behind that wall is a masterpiece of unspoken beauty. 

You’ll crumble tiles which used to be an elaborate mosaic pool. All that is left now is the remembrance of it. 

You also get to experience Atlas Obscura. Truly, this garden party will be a night of enthrallment, exploration, and performance. 

Medieval Herbs and Remedies: Foraging in the Shadow of the Cloisters

You will get to trek around Fort Tryon Park. Aside from that, you will also get to explore edible and medicinal herbs. 

New York is a place where you can live off with anything from the environment. After all, that’s how the native people used to live in New York. The only thing left for you to do is to learn the art. 

You will also get to explore the history of Met Cloisters which is a branch of the Metropolitan Museum of Art that is devoted to the architecture and art of medieval Europe.

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