Monday, September 17, 2012

Isham Park - Centennial Celebration!!! Hosted by Neighborhood volunteer groups, NYC Parks & Partnerships for Parks

Photo from the Archives of the NYC Department of Parks & Recreation
Inwood, Manhattan—One hundred years ago on September 28th 1912, the P.S. 52 marching band paraded into Isham Park at its Broadway entrance just above Isham Street up to the top of the hill to the former Isham family residence, where festivities celebrating the new park, including speeches, folk dancing, and music performances were presented.

The park was one of the first gifts of land for a NYC public park according to then Parks Commissioner Charles B. Stover.  The gift not only preserved the land for Isham Park, but it reignited the discussion of the purchase of land for Inwood Hill Park.  Completion of the construction of the first rapid transit station at the east end of Dyckman Street in 1906 had hastened the development of open farmland in Inwood into the residential apartment community known today. The gift of land for Isham Park actually preserved precious natural geological features that might have been lost if development had advanced without interruption across the northern tip of the island.   

Julia Isham Taylor initiated the gift of land for a park to be named in her father’s memory in a letter to the Manhattan Borough President George A. McAneny, reproduced in the New York Times on May 26, 1911.  After her aunt, her father’s sister, Flora Eliza Isham, gave additional land in early 1912, the celebration of the park was planned and held.

The gifts of land that became Isham Park have enabled the public to experience the original terrain of Manhattan Island at its northern tip for the past 100 years. As Julia intended, Isham Park has served as an open space, treasure, and community asset throughout its lifetime. We ask that everyone who is devoted to Isham Park participate in this celebration, share their favorite Isham Park memories, reconnect with the park’s phenomenal history, and celebrate the diverse neighborhood that envelopes it.

Once again, the I.S. 52 Inwood Tiger band and Heavenly Voices Chorus will march from the Broadway entrance to the top of Isham Park to open the festivities:

Saturday, September 29, 2012
11:00 am to 3:00 pm, Isham Park, event will be held on the lawn at the top of the park.
Enter the park at Broadway above Isham Street to march with the band at 11:00am.
Festivities will include various speakers, story booth, performers, historical park signage and tours, children’s activities, celebration cake and refreshments.

NYC Parks, Partnerships for Parks, Volunteers for Isham Park, Isham Park Restoration Program 1970, Inc., Rotary Club of Inwood, and community volunteers, with special thanks to Edison Properties

For more information please contact:

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

"Inwood, Manhattan" walking tour guide now available on the HDC's website

 The Historic District Council has put pdf's of the "Walking Tour Guides" for the 2011 inaugural "Six to Celebrate" communities on line on their website so that you can preview them:

You can page through the guides or purchase the entire set of six for just $5.00.

Below is the cover image of the guide for Inwood, "Manhattan."

Monday, September 3, 2012

"Lost History" presentation for Isham Park's Centennial month

An invitation from Don Rice to 
at the Indian Road Cafe, 600 West 218th Street (corner Indian Road)

Isham Park - 100 Years

This month at LOST INWOOD we'll be celebrating the centennial of Isham Park's dedication. Pat Courtney, of Volunteers for Isham Park, has prepared a special presentation focusing on the Park; its history, structures, views and design elements. Beginning with Julia Isham Taylor's May 1911 letter in which she offered Isham Park to New York City, Pat will review the details of the property, including aspects of the park's design and the eventual fate of its original structures. The possible identity of the person who designed the park's features (including the walls, pathways, steps, and terraces that we know today) will be discussed, as will recently discovered details about Julia and her husband Henry Osborn Taylor. 

Pat will bring along information about the upcoming Isham Park Centennial Celebration, which will be held on Saturday, September 29.  For those interested, she'll also distribute copies of  "Inwood, Manhattan," a walking tour guide produced in 2012 by the Historic District Council for Inwood as one of its inaugural "Six to Celebrate" communities.

We look forward to seeing you on Tuesday for this free presentation. Don't miss it!

- Don Rice

Indian Road Cafe
600 West 218th Street (corner Indian Road)
NYC 10034
tel 212-942-7451