Washington Square Park

September 22, 2023

NYC dedicates 220-year-old tombstone of Irish immigrant in Washington Square Park

A 220-year-old tombstone uncovered in Washington Square Park over a decade ago will now be honored and put on display. The New York City Parks Department on Friday dedicated the headstone of James Jackson, an Irish immigrant who died in 1799 and was buried in Washington Square Park, a potter's field from 1797 to 1825. The headstone was discovered during a renovation project at the park's Sullivan Street entrance in 2009. The relic is now being presented in one of the windows of the Park House close to where it was discovered, accompanied by an informative sign where visitors can learn more.
August 22, 2022

11 best college hangouts in New York City

New York is too big to feel like a college town. But, in many ways, it is one, serving as home to New York University, the New School, the CUNY schools, Columbia University, Fordham University, and Manhattan College, to name a few. These students can be found all over the city, but they throng thicker in some spots—ones that sit closer to their respective campuses and also charge way less for drinks than some of this city’s definitively non-student-friendly expensive cocktail bars. Here are some of our favorites.
The full list ahead
October 25, 2021

10 offbeat haunted spots in New York City

'Tis the season to voluntarily spook yourself! But if haunted houses and tourist-friendly ghost tours are not for you, New York's bustling burrows are home to a slew of the more naturally born spirits. You’ll find Dracula’s extended family on 23rd Street, a host of oracles on Orchard Street, and the site of the cruel crime that led to the nation’s first recorded murder trial on Spring Street. If you’re searching for a necropolis in the metropolis, here are ten of the best sites in New York to spot specters.
See all the haunted haunts here!
March 3, 2021

NYC reburies remains of early New Yorkers in Washington Square Park

The New York City Parks Department on Tuesday reinterred the human remains of early New Yorkers found during construction in and around Washington Square Park. The skeletal remains were placed in a wooden box and buried five feet below grade within a planting bed, with an engraved paver marking the site at the southern entrance of the park near Sullivan Street. The remains were uncovered between 2008 and 2017, including the unearthing of two 19th-century burial vaults in 2015 that held the remains of at least a dozen people.
Find out more
July 11, 2019

Hundreds of bone fragments to be reburied under Washington Square Park

While upgrading water mains under Washington Square Park in 2015, city workers unearthed two 19th-century burial vaults containing the skeletal remains of at least a dozen people. As part of Landmarks Preservation Commission protocol, intact burials were left untouched, but the city had removed several hundred bone fragments. Four years later, plans to rebury the remains under the park are moving forward as the Parks and Recreation Department presents its idea to place the fragments in a "coffin-sized" box, according to the Villager.
More this way
August 1, 2018

10 secrets of Washington Square Park

With 12 million visits a year from tourists and residents alike, Washington Square Park has plenty of things to see and do. And Parkies worth their salt know the basics: it was once a potter’s field where the indigent were buried, and a roadbed carried vehicles through the Park for almost 100 years. But the Park holds some secrets even the most knowledgeable Washington Square denizen might not know, like its connection to freed slaves in NYC and the fact that it was the first place the telegraph was publicly used.
Read on to discover if you’re a Park newbie or a Park expert
May 4, 2018

Jane Jacobs’ NYC: The sites that inspired her work and preservation legacy

Jane Jacobs’ birthday on May 4 is marked throughout the world as an occasion to celebrate one’s own city -- its history, diversity, and continued vitality. “Jane’s Walks” are conducted across the country to encourage average citizens to appreciate and engage the complex and dazzling ecosystems which make up our cityscapes (Here in NYC, MAS is hosting 200+ free walks throughout the city from today through Sunday). But there’s no place better to appreciate all things Jane Jacobs than Greenwich Village, the neighborhood in which she lived and which so informed and inspired her writings and activism, in turn helping to save it from destruction.
Tour Jane Jacobs' NYC
April 3, 2018

Hear MLK’s final speech replayed under the Washington Square arch tonight

Today, April 3rd, marks the 50th anniversary of when Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered his final speech, "I've Been to the Mountaintop," in Memphis, Tennessee. In response to the Memphis Sanitation Strike, he called for unity, economic action, and nonviolent protests. He also, eerily, alluded to an untimely death. The following day, April 4, 1968, he was assassinated. To commemorate this final speech, the city will tonight replay it in its entirety throughout Washington Square Park while Mayor de Blasio and First Lady McCray light the arch in MLK's honor.
Event details ahead
July 14, 2017

On this day in 1645, a freed slave became the first non-Native settler to own land in Greenwich Village

In 1626, the Dutch West India Company imported 11 African slaves to New Amsterdam, beginning New York’s 200 year-period of slavery. One man in this group, Paolo d’Angola, would become the city’s first non-Native settler of Greenwich Village. As the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation (GVSHP) discovered, and added to their Civil Rights and Social Justice Map, as a recently freed slave, d’Angola was granted land around today’s Washington Square Park for a farm. While this seems like a generous gesture from a slave owner, d’Angola’s land actually served as an intermediary spot between the European colonists and the American Indians, who sometimes raided settlements. This area, in addition to Chinatown, Little Italy, and SoHo, was known as the “Land of the Blacks.”
Find out more
June 15, 2017

Art Nerd NY’s top art, architecture, and design event picks – 6/15-6/21

Art Nerd New York founder Lori Zimmer shares her top art, design and architecture event picks for 6sqft readers! If you’re feeling low this week, head to Times Square for a round of artful applause, or to the Rubin for some pick me ups thanks to the world of sound. Step back in time (and flex your history knowledge) for a Jazz Age Drink and Draw, then test your modern New York history knowledge at the New York Now Scavenger Hunt. If you’re itching to learn, join a free history tour of Washington Square Park, take in an artist talk by Martha Rosler, then celebrate the diverse history of the Lower East Side at the Egg Rolls, Egg Creams, and Empanadas Festival. Finally, cozy up with a date for Bryant Park’s first screening under the stars with King Kong.
Details on these events and more this way
April 4, 2016

MAD Transforms Multi-Family Building Into One Glamorous Six-Floor Home

This beautiful Greek revival building, located at the Northwest corner of Washington Square Park, dates all the way back to the 1850s and previously functioned as a multiple family house. However, with new ownership often comes new ideas, and the current owners recently transformed the apartment building into a single-family residence. The renovation was led by the design team at Matiz Architecture & Design (MAD) and included a complete rebuild of the rear exterior, as well the addition of an central elevator providing easy access to all six floors. MAD's focus during the renovation was to conserve the existing details and restore the building's exterior while also giving the home an modern update. In addition to the architectural components, MAD was also responsible for all of the interior furnishings.
February 4, 2016

They Paved Washington Square Park and Put Up a Parking Lot

It's true: Washington Square Park was, in part, Washington Square parking lot. In the 1960s, at the peak of the nation's car culture fixation, the Greenwich Village park was put into use as a parking lot, until cars were finally banished altogether in the 1970s, when the large circular plaza around the fountain was added. Some say the parking lot was an effort to keep hippies from gathering in the beloved public space.
Find out more
November 6, 2015

Yet Another Burial Vault Uncovered Near Washington Square Park, Comes Filled With Coffins

Employees of the Department of Design and Construction are definitely being kept on their toes this week. After uncovering a hidden vault containing the skeletal remains of at least a dozen people believed to be approximately 200 years old, workers have uncovered a second burial vault, this one filled with wood coffins. Workers tasked with upgrading 19th-century water mains under the park stumbled upon the latest burial ground Wednesday night, a day after their first finding at the corner of Waverly Place and Washington Square Park East.
find out more here
November 5, 2015

Hidden Burial Vault and the Skeletal Remains of 12 Found Under Washington Square Park

It's pretty well known that Washington Square Park started out as a potters field, a burial ground for the poor, and later as a resting place for those who died from yellow fever. But this has always been something out of the history books. Until now. Recently, a group of city workers in the process of upgrading water mains under the park came upon a hidden vault containing the skeletal remains of at least a dozen people believed to be approximately 200 years old. According to officials from the Department of Design and Construction, the vault is eight feet deep, 15 feet wide, and 20 feet long. While the exact details are unknown right now, a team of anthropologists and and archaeologists will be requested to evaluate and determine the age of both the remains and the vault.
Find out more
August 3, 2015

A Classic Six Co-op Overlooking Washington Square Park Asks $2.75 Million

Central Park is usually hailed as the best New York park to live right off of. It definitely is one of the best, but that shouldn't override another great NYC park–Washington Square Park. Downtown in Greenwich Village, you'll get a whole different atmosphere consisting of performers, musicians, students, chess players and everyone else coming to hang around the park's iconic fountain. Yes, it's livelier and louder than Central Park, but if you're looking for a co-op with a little more excitement and fun right outside, this apartment at 39 Washington Square South might fit the bill. It's an impressive classic six unit that's just hit the market for $2.75 million.
Check it out
May 26, 2015

Lovable Pied-à-terre on Bleecker Street Comes with a Landscaped Garden

Here's a really cool ground-floor pied-à-terre at 175 Bleecker Street with a private garden, available for $849,000. The fully-renovated loft has a crisp, clean feel with tall casement windows, white floors, and whitewashed exposed brick. And the landscaped garden is easy to maintain so it looks beautiful all year long—plus imagine stepping out into your own verdant space with a cup of coffee in hand.
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May 12, 2015

If Robert Moses Visited NYC Today, Here’s Where We’d Take Him

If you have even the slightest interest in architecture, urban planning, and NYC history, you know Robert Moses. Unforgettably profiled as the "Power Broker" by Robert Caro, Moses was the "master builder" of mid-20th century New York and its environs. He was a larger-than-life character who had very set ways of approaching urban design. He advocated for highways over public transportation (he built 13 expressways through NYC), dense housing towers over low-scale neighborhoods, and communities segregated by race and class over organic, mixed-demographic areas. Of course, there are plenty of much-loved aspects of the city that also came from Moses–Jones Beach, the United Nations, and ten public swimming pools like the one in McCarren Park. Regardless of your feelings on Robert Moses, though, we can all agree that the city would not be the same without him. But a lot has changed since he lost his post as director of the Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority in the mid 1960s and even more so since he passed away in 1981. So we can't help but wonder what he would think of our fair city in 2015. To have a little fun, we planned a present-day tour for the ghost of Robert Moses.
See where we'd take the Power Broker here
April 27, 2015

WSP Eco Map Tracks the Hidden Minetta Creek and Trees of Washington Square Park

It's easy to get distracted in Washington Square Park by all the NYU students and street performers, but there's a lot more than meets the eye in this historic public space. For instance, did you know the Minetta Creek runs under the park and through the surrounding neighborhood? Or what about all those beautiful trees, wouldn't it be fun to know a little more about them? With a new mobile map called the WSP Eco Map, you can identify the species of many trees in the park, locate other environmental park components like nesting boxes, and see exactly where the Minetta Brook/Creek is hiding.
Find out more here
December 9, 2014

O Christmas Tree: Where to See the Biggest Evergreens Around the City

Last week, we took a look back at the history of the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree to mark the annual lighting celebration. Though this is probably the most famous Christmas tree in the world, many of us jaded New Yorkers would rather not deal with the crowds and traffic jams that come with visiting Rock Center. So as an equally festive alternative, we've rounded up some of the other huge trees illuminating the city this holiday season.