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Hart Island and Solomon Riley

Learn more about Hart Island’s history as New York City’s largest potter’s field–as well as the surprising, often-overlooked history of Solomon Riley’s attempt to build an amusement park on the island’s southern tip.

Steinway Village, Astoria, Queens

Learn about how and why the famous manufacturer built a factory here, in northwestern Queens, in the late 19th century. Steinway’s investments in this corner of what was once the independent municipality of Long Island City proved a key contribution to the growth of greater New York City.

Orchard Beach, Pelham Bay Park, The Bronx

Orchard Beach is one of the great 1930s public works projects in New York City. It’s early history as a campsite is a window into leisure patterns in New York City’s coastal hinterlands in the 19th century, while the beach’s redevelopment in the 1930s speaks to the career of the city’s infamous power broker and master builder, Robert Moses.

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North Beach

Learn more about two German Americans, George Ehret and William Steinway, who built a coastal amusement park in northern Queens in the late 19th century. Originally called Bowery Bay Beach, North Beach was one of a number of resort destinations in the outer boroughs of New York City at the turn of the 20th century.