On the North Shore of Staten Island, there is the neighborhood of Graniteville. This neighborhood received its name from the quarry of granite that ran through the area. Between the mid-to-late 1800s, the granite was quarried for the building of roads and walls on Staten Island. It was not until years later that it was found that the quarry was actually made up of diabase, and not granite.

After the quarry was closed, excess dirt from where new houses were being built was filled into the quarry and it turned into a vacant lot. In the mid-1970s, Dr. Alan BenimGraniteville Quarry Park, Staten Islandoff, a current professor at the College of Staten Island, was surveying the land and found a rare stone within the diabase. This stone is called trondhjemite and is only known to be found in Wales…

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Prior to the building of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, Staten Island was more of a vacation area than anything else.  Once the bridge was opened in 1964, many people started to move to Staten Island on a permanent basis. As more 
people wanted to move onto the Island, there were more houses being built, as well as housing communities.

Blueberry Park EltingvilleOn the South Shore of Staten Island, in the neighborhood of Eltingville, one of the housing communities that was built after the opening of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge was Atlantic Village. This community is located right off of Arden Avenue and has nice views of the Raritan Bay, being that the houses are across the street from it.  This housing community was built between the mid-1970s and the late 1980s.

When creating…

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Many of Staten Island's prominent families made their homes here during the nineteenth century.  One of these families was the Jones family, most of whose descendants came to New York from Philadelphia.  The most Jones Woods Parkprominent member of this family on Staten Island was Shipley Jones, who was born in the middle of the nineteenth century.  He was born into a wealthy family who created a large estate for him in the current neighborhood of New Brighton.  Originally, the estate was owned by his parents, both of whom died prior to the first years of the twentieth century.  At that time, the estate was passed down to Shipley Jones, who owned it for a number of years before he too passed away.

Shipley Jones graduated from Columbia College in 1869 with a Bachelor of…

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gnpc9_400Throughout the nineteenth century, farming was one of the most significant industries on Staten Island.  By the turn of the twentieth century, the number of farms on the Island began to greatly diminish.  Nonetheless, German immigrant Henry William Dietrich Mohlenhoff decided to relocate from his farmland in Queens to Staten Island, where he purchased thirty-two acres of land.  On this land, he and his wife established a farm. The couple had one dozen children, all of whom worked on the farm with their parents.  Even as the sons married, they would erect their own homes on the property so that they could still work on the farm. 

In 1928, Staten Island farmers began to grow flowers in greenhouses to ease the air pollution.  The Mohlenhoff farm began to…

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Since the beginning of the twentieth century, Staten Island has been

Port Richmond Levy Park, Staten Islandknown for its patriotic residents.  With the end oof the First World War, residents begged for memorials to be placed in their neighborhoods, or for sites to be dedicated in honor of the fallen Staten Island soldiers.  These residents got exactly what they wanted and today, Staten Island is home to a great number of memorials and places dedicated in honor of those residents who served for our country.


In 1909, the City of New York acquired roughly half of an acre of land on the North Shore of Staten Island.  After twenty-five years, the site was finally transferred over to the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation, who did not do much to the site for a number of years. …

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P.S. 8 Great Kills ParkIn 1892, a school building was erected in Staten Island's neighborhood of Great Kills.  The building, which housed students of Public School 8, was given many additions at the turn of the twentieth century and it was designated as the Great Kills School in 1916.  The following year, however, it was replaced by an entirely new school building.

Public School 8 is located at 112 Lindenwood Road.  Its boundaries include School Street to the northwest, Lindenwood Road to the northeast, and Seely Lane to the southwest.  For quite some time, the southeastern boundary for Public School 8 was an empty lot.  That changed by the end of the century when the city developed a playground on the empty lot.  The name of the school was also changed at that time from the…

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Westwood Park, Willowbrook Staten Island
The Staten Island Expressway is often used as the dividing line between Staten Island's North Shore and Mid-Island sections.  The land for this expressway was acquired by the City of New York during the middle of the twentieth century.  After its completion, it was found that there was much unused land that had been obtained for the construction of the expressway. As a result, many parcels of land were transferred over to the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation, who developed many parks using the vacant land.

In 1958, the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation had obtained almost seven acres of this land in the neighborhood of Willowbrook, below the completed Staten Island Expressway.  This site, as well as land surrounding it,…

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At the turn of the twenty-first century, the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation acquired a parcel of land on the Great Kills shoreline made up of roughly twenty square feet.  The land had been filled with debris and Seaside Nature Park in Great Kills, SINYgarbage at the time.  In an effort to clean up the Great Kills shoreline, a non-profit organization known as the Turnaround Friends was formed in 1994.  The Turnaround Friends teamed up with the New York City Departments of Environmental Protection, Parks and Recreation, and Sanitation to perform a clean-up effort.  The New York City Department of Parks and Recreation soon expanded the site to five acres and created Seaside Wildlife Nature Park, a waterfront park overlooking the Great Kills Harbor.

Over the years, much has been…

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In the second half of the nineteenth century, Moritz Glauber immigrated to the United States from Czechoslovakia.  By Toad Hall Playgroundthe early part of the twentieth century, he had established a 35-acre estate near the center of Staten Island.Glauber passed away in 1944 and the estate soon came into the hands of the City of New York.  By the end of the decade, almost half of the estate was assigned to the New York City Housing Authority, who planned to use the land for a public housing project.  This project, which consisted of 502 apartments, was completed in 1950 as the Todt Hill Houses.

While the name of the Todt Hill Houses complex refers to Staten Island's neighborhood of Todt Hill, the area is commonly associated with the community of Manor Heights.  The housing…

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Intermediate School 7 was first established in 1960 as Bernstein Intermediate School 7.  The school was constructed in the shape of an "L", taking up about three quarters of a rectangular plot of land.  Around that same time, the Prescott Playground, Staten Islandremaining quarter of land was acquired by the City of New York to be established as a park.  The school opened to the public in 1965 at 1270 Huguenot Avenue with the park following it just two short years later.

The City of New York had assigned this park to both the New York City Board of Education and the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation.  Due to its location, it was named Huguenot Playground.  The name of the park was changed, however, in 1997.  Prescott Playground was the name it took that year, in honor of…

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