Of the thousands of persons
engaged in the hunt for fame and
fortune in New York, not a stock
broker's commission of them know
the origin of the names of the
streets they travel through six
days in the week. When a
presumably knowing person is
asked whence such a street
derives its name, he wrinkles
his brow and answers: "D'ye
know, it never struck me to find
out." That he may know, here are
a few the writer has unearthed
Allen street- perpetuates the
name and fame of Captain William
Allen, one of the heroes of the
War of 1812. He was but
twenty-nine years of age when he
died, but left behind him a
Ann street—The Christian name of
a Dutch burgher's wife, Ann
Barclay—From the Rev. Henry
Barclay, second rector of
Battery Place—From a place where
a battery was erected in 1693.
Bayard street owes its name to
Richard Bayard, nephew of Peter
Stuyvesant, who filled the
position of Mayor and occupied
other official posts in the
early history of New York. The
Bayard farm was situated between
Canal and Bleecker streets and
between Macdougal street and the
Beach street- a corruption of
Bache, was named in honor of
Paul Bache, a son-in-law of
Beaver—From the beaver;
originally the fur district. The
animal was an important factor
in the fur business in the old
Beekman—From William Beekman,
owner of a farm which extended
north and south of the present
street and from Nassau street to
the East River.
Bethune street- honors the name
of the Bethun family, noteworthy
philanthropists, whose work was
of special significance in
connection with the improvement
of the "Five Points."
Bleecker street is named in
honor of Anthony Bleecker, who
for many years was prominent in
the literary world.
Bowery (Dutch)- means a farm.
From Peter Stuyvesant's "Bowerie,"
in the neighborhood of Third
avenue and Thirteenth street, to
the city there was a path,
naturally called Bowery lane;
this was afterward named Bowery
road, and finally the Bowery.
Bowling Green—Where the burghers
bowled; leased to three of them
Bridge—From a bridge that
crossed a ditch in Broad street.
Broad—From the Breede Graft, or
Broad Canal, once a ditch.
Broome street- was named after
John Broome, Lieutenant Governor
of New York State in 1804 and a
prominent member of many
commercial and charitable
Canal street- was originally
a canal forty feet wide, with a
promenade and trees on each side
of it. It carried the water from
the old Collect Pond to the
Hudson River. A stone bridge
crossed it at Broadway; this is
now below the pavement of that
Cedar—Suggestive of the
character of tree growth in the
Chambers street- owes its name
to John Chambers, a prominent
lawyer and one of the officers
of Trinity Church.
Chatham Square-as well as Pitt
street, perpetuates the name of
William Pitt, America's devoted
and eloquent friend, the Earl of
Cherry street- was originally
part of a large cherry farm.
Church street- was cut through
property belonging to Trinity
Chrystie street- was named after
John Chrystie, a brave and
skillful officer, who heroically
gave his life during the War of
Cliff—From Dirck Van Clyff, a
burgher, on whose former
property the street is.
Clinton street -recalls the
names of James, George and De
Witt Clinton,whose records in
war and in peace are deserving
of the highest honors at the
hand of the State that gave them
Coenties Slip—A corruption of
the name of Conraet ten Eyck,
owner of land in the vicinity.
Corlears street- brings to mind
Jacobus Van Corlears, who
offered the use of his house for
civic purposes to Governor
Stuyvesant, and Anthony Van
Corlears, the trumpeter, who, it
is alleged, gave Spuyten Duyvil
its name when he boasted that he
could swim across the troubled
waters at that place "in spite
of the devil."
Cortlandt—From Oloff Stevenson
Cortlandt, an early settler,
through whose land the street
Crosby street- was named in
honor of William Bedlow Crosby,
who had inherited the greatest
portion of the Seventh ward. He
was connected with many
charitable societies and devoted
much of his time to benevolence.
Delancey street- perpetuates
the name of Governor James De
Lancey, the original builder and
owner of the house that
afterward became Fraunces'
Tavern and the donor to the city
of its first town clock.
Desbrosses street- commemorates
the official career of Elias
Desbrosses, who occupied the
positions of Alderman, President
of the Chamber of Commerce and
warden of Trinity Church.
Division street- derives its
name from the fact that it
divided the two great farms of
James De Lancey and Henry
Duane street- owes its name to
James Duane, New York's first
Mayor after the Revolution.
Eldridge street is a reminder
of Lieutenant Joseph C.
Eldridge, who lost his life in
the war of 1812.
Exchange Place—Where the old
Merchants' Exchange was located.
Ferry—The road that led to
the first ferry between New York
Frankfort—From the German city,
Jacob Leisler's birthplace. The
street was cut through his
Franklin street and Franklin
Square perpetuate the name of
Fulton—From Robert Fulton, whose
history is, or should be, known
to every one.