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Old Posted Mar 25, 2021, 6:44 PM
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The Bronx: City Island

City Island is a neighborhood of the Bronx. The neighborhood has a population of around 4,500.

City Island was first settled by Europeans in the mid-1600s. In the 1760s, Benjamin Palmer bought the island and made plans to begin a port city to compete against New York City, due to the shipping traffic constantly using the sheltered Long Island Sound to get to New York City from the east, passing City Island. The plans never materialized due to the beginning of the Revolutionary War.

In 1819, City Island became part of the Town of Pelham in Westchester County. After this, ship pilots and oystermen began to work the water surrounding the island. In the 1860s, shipbuilding began to replace oyster harvesting.

City Island voted to be annexed to New York City in 1895, in exchange for a bridge to the mainland. City Island became part of the Bronx in 1898.

In the early 1900s, yacht building began alongside shipbuilding. During the world wars, production changed to warships, such as subchasers and P.T. boats.

Today, while shipbuilding and other industries are gone, City Island remains a nautical community. Marinas and yacht clubs dot the island, and seafood restaurants line City Island Avenue, the main street through the neighborhood.



A seafood restaurant on City Island Avenue. At the south end of the island, seafood restaurants line the avenue.



A seafood restaurant on City Island Avenue. The original section of the restaurant is the George Horton House, dating to the early 1800s.



A seafood restaurant on City Island Avenue.



A seafood restaurant on City Island Avenue.



Stepping Stones Lighthouse, in Long Island Sound, halfway to Long Island. The lighthouse was built in 1877, and was named because the many islets at the western end of Long Island Sound were, according to legend, used by the devil to flee Connecticut to Long Island.



A yacht club entrance on City Island Avenue.



A house on Belden Street, built in 1880.



A house on Belden Street.



A house on the end of Rochelle Street, overlooking Eastchester Bay with a view of Manhattan's skyline.



At the end of many of the western cross-streets on the island, there are open views of the Manhattan skyline from across Eastchester Bay.



A house on Rochelle Street.



Houses on Marine Street, overlooking Eastchester Bay.



A house on Horton Street.



Houses on Marine Street.



Grace Episcopal Church, on City Island Avenue at Pilot Street. The church was built in 1867.



A house on Pilot Street, built in 1862.



A house on City Island Avenue.



A house on Pell Place, built in 1930.



A duplex on Centre Street.



A shop on City Island Avenue.



City Island Public School, on City Island Avenue. The school was built in 1975.



A banquet hall on city Island Avenue.



A house on Schofield Street.



A duplex on Schofield Street, built in 1875.



A house on Schofield Street, built in 1865.



A house on Schofield Street, built in 1865.



Houses on Schofield Street.



A house on Schofield Street.



A house on Schofield Street.



A bar on City Island Avenue.



A restaurant on City Island Avenue.



Buildings on City Island Avenue. In the center is an apartment building, constructed in 1898.



Businesses on City Island Avenue.



Restaurants on City Island Avenue.



The City Island Branch of the New York Public Library, on City Island Avenue. The library was built in 1970.



An ice cream shop on City Island Avenue.



A building on city Island Avenue.



An apartment building on City Island Avenue.



A house on City Island Avenue at Marine Street.



Trinity Methodist Church, on City Island Avenue. The church was built in 1878.



Houses on Carroll Street.



Condominiums on Schofield Street.



A building on Schofield Street.



The City Island Nautical Museum, on Fordham Street. The structure was built in 1898, and was originally Public School 17.



The Hart Island Ferry Terminal, at the end of Fordham Street.



Just east of City Island is Hart Island. The island was first used publicly during the Civil War, when it was a Colored Troops training ground, and then a P.O.W. camp for Confederate soldiers.



After the Civil War, Hart Island was used as a quarantine station, psychiatric hospital, and tubercularium, among other uses. A workhouse for delinquent boys operated on the island as well.



Hart Island has also been used as a potter's field and cemetery throughout its history. In modern times, burials have included the homeless, stillborn babies, and AIDS victims. Most recently, people who died of Covid-19 and went unclaimed by families have been buried on the island.



Houses on King Avenue.



Houses on Tier Street.



A house on Tier Street, built in 1894.



A house on Tier Street.



A house on City Island Avenue.



A restaurant on City Island Avenue.



Houses on City Island Avenue.



Buildings on City Island Avenue.



A house on Minnieford Avenue.



A house on Minnieford Avenue, built in 1876.



The Samuel Pell House, on City Island Avenue. The house was built in 1876.



St. Mary Star of the Sea Roman Catholic Church, on City Island Avenue. The church was built in 1959.



A house on City Island Avenue.



A house on City Island Avenue.



A business on City Island Avenue.



A restaurant on City Island Avenue.

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  #2  
Old Posted Mar 25, 2021, 11:04 PM
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Nice, I once worked with a guy in Fresno who used to live on City Island. He did say black people didn’t dare hang out in this neighborhood as it was very racist and get chased out. This was in the 1980’s, hopefully it changed. He’s a white guy, and many people thought he looked like Superman actor Christopher Reeve.


This house could easily fit in many Los Angeles neighborhoods. It looks similar to homes in my grandparents neighborhood of south-central LA.
A house on Pell Place, built in 1930.

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Old Posted Mar 25, 2021, 11:34 PM
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Interesting. I've always wanted to check out City Island, but never got around to it.
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Old Posted Mar 26, 2021, 12:38 PM
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Great photos. I haven't been to City Island in 30 years, but I recall that it's very nice.
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Old Posted Mar 26, 2021, 3:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisLA View Post
Nice, I once worked with a guy in Fresno who used to live on City Island. He did say black people didn’t dare hang out in this neighborhood as it was very racist and get chased out. This was in the 1980’s, hopefully it changed. He’s a white guy, and many people thought he looked like Superman actor Christopher Reeve.
I think that parts of the movie Summer of Sam were filmed here and yes, that was pretty much how it was from my understanding also.

Quote:
This house could easily fit in many Los Angeles neighborhoods. It looks similar to homes in my grandparents neighborhood of south-central LA.
A house on Pell Place, built in 1930.

I agree and parts of the area have always had a bit of a Southern California look/vibe to me (which is what I like about it).
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Old Posted Mar 26, 2021, 4:50 PM
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Spike Lee always propagates racist stereotypes of Americans of Italian descent. He’s a vile racist with an agenda.
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Old Posted Mar 26, 2021, 7:00 PM
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nice to see the bx and city island here -- great shots.

as someone who works all around the city and in the bx for 25yrs i have been over there quite a bit, by boat, driving and by public transit and have probably dined in every one of those seafood restaurants for fun or various events. they are all hugely popular with bronxites. and by that i mean bronxites of all stripes. i know a few people who live on the island and it isnt very diverse at all, but for the record the restaurants are very much so and have been since at least the early-90s when i first started to get to know the place.

if you want to visit city island -- the way to do this area for a daytrip on your own is pick a nice summery saturday. start off early with a morning at orchard beach. then around lunch take the bus over to city island. there is no way to get lost it only goes straight down the main drag. get off at the very end. go into johnny's reef, which is first choice and where everybody in the bx goes and it is quite a fantastic ultra bx experience with nice views of hart island. then walk back to mid-island where they have weekend street sales/street fares and hang around a bit before you head out. it's an adventure to get there and makes for a long beach day, but its well worth it. viva la bx!
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Old Posted Mar 26, 2021, 10:43 PM
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^ I've been to City Island twice. I usually stick with Johnny's Reefs, which is a cafeteria-style fried seafood restaurant, because the prices are more reasonable. The seafood at Johnny's Reefs is fine, but nothing special. Some of the other restaurants have rather eye-watering prices, but I wouldn't mind trying them sometime.

One thing to note - there is literally just one road that cuts through the island. During summer evenings, especially on Friday or weekend, there is a huge line of cars lining up on that road to drive into the island to have dinner.
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Old Posted Mar 27, 2021, 1:52 AM
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My Aunt Doris had a place on Centre street. We would be forced to go there in the Summers. We hated it because the Italian kids would beat us up and steal our stuff. They stole my little brothers Bigwheel and burned it in the baseball fields behind PS175. All of her neighbors were Firemen or Cops.
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Old Posted Mar 27, 2021, 2:59 AM
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Quote:
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My Aunt Doris had a place on Centre street. We would be forced to go there in the Summers. We hated it because the Italian kids would beat us up and steal our stuff. They stole my little brothers Bigwheel and burned it in the baseball fields behind PS175. All of her neighbors were Firemen or Cops.
Replace “Italian” with black or Hispanic and see how quickly you’re labeled a racist. Perhaps, the label fits.
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Old Posted Mar 28, 2021, 9:44 AM
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lol well yeah like i said the small island isnt too diverse, but the restaurants are very, very popular with all.

city island is also known as new england in nyc and it looks it.
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Old Posted Mar 28, 2021, 9:41 PM
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Nice photos of City Island, a part of NY rarely talked about! It is also great that Manhattan is even more visible from afar, thanks to the new Central Park supertalls.
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Old Posted Mar 29, 2021, 12:15 AM
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Originally Posted by JMKeynes View Post
Replace “Italian” with black or Hispanic and see how quickly you’re labeled a racist. Perhaps, the label fits.
Mark Miano the biggest bully on King Street went on to become a soldier in the Bonnano Family. Before he beat me up the first time he asked me If I was Italian. I think my Red hair and freckles gave it away. He told his Brother Derek to beat me up because I was a stupid Mick. He and his brother are both dead. NYC in the 70's was a weird place. I am so glad my Mom got us out of there.
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Old Posted Mar 29, 2021, 1:29 AM
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I’ve been to NYC a number of times and my wife is from the Bronx but I didn’t even know this island existed until a few months ago roaming on google. Nice to put a photo tour with it.
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Old Posted Mar 29, 2021, 11:53 AM
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Originally Posted by jdcamb View Post
Mark Miano the biggest bully on King Street went on to become a soldier in the Bonnano Family. Before he beat me up the first time he asked me If I was Italian. I think my Red hair and freckles gave it away. He told his Brother Derek to beat me up because I was a stupid Mick. He and his brother are both dead. NYC in the 70's was a weird place. I am so glad my Mom got us out of there.
Your comment is racist nonetheless. Once again, if you made a sweeping comment about blacks or Jews, you’d be kicked off the forum, and rightfully so.
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Last edited by JMKeynes; Mar 29, 2021 at 12:17 PM.
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Old Posted May 24, 2021, 11:45 PM
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I like this lighthouse with attached residence for the keeper!
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