History of the Bronx River

Dr. Lloyd Ultan, The Bronx Borough HistorianNotes by Maarten de Kadt, November 16, 2002Dr. Ultan was at Fannie Lou Hamer Freedom High School on November 5, 2002 where he gave 2 1/2 half-hour talk about the history of the Bronx River. The following is a rough transcription of the notes I took during his talk. […]

Fascinating Abandoned Mansion – Halcyon Hall, Bennett College, Millbrook, New York

Bennett College was a women’s college founded in 1890 and located in the Village of Millbrook in New York. The school closed in 1978. History Bennett College was founded in 1890 at Irvington, New York by May F. Bennett. In 1907 the college moved to its final home on 22 acres (89,000 m2) in Millbrook, Dutchess County, New York. In 1907 the school had […]


There’s a park trail in Van Cortlandt Park that was once a railroad. It can be reached by walking east through the park directly from the W 242nd Street stop on the #1 subway line, the last stop. Follow a line of telephone poles that boast extremely old lighting fixtures. When you reach an overpass, you […]

Historic Mansions on Long Island – Greentree

Greentree is a 400-acre (1.6 km2) estate in Manhasset, New York[ on Long Island. The estate was constructed for businessman Payne Whitney in 1904 and was owned by members of the Whitney family for much of the 20th century. It is currently owned by the Greentree Foundation, a philanthropic nonprofit organization. History Payne Whitney purchased the estate for his bride, Helen Julia Hay, in 1904.[ As with other Gold Coast […]

Forgotten Movie Theaters of the Bronx – Loew’s Paradise

The Bronx, which had over 100 theaters showing movies and live entertainment in the years before World War II, now has only two multiplexes. Both were built in recent years and are sorely lacking in the architectural character that typified the earlier venues. However, many of those older theaters are not gone, but instead are […]

Lost Mansions of Long Island’s Gold Coast – Lands End

These photos of Lands End on the tip of Sands Point, Long Island, New York, were taken by photographer Roberta Fineberg using an iPhone. Roberta submitted the shots through the Untapped Mailbag, writing, “The setting for The Great Gatsby, Lands End, has become a kind of poetic dead end or no man’s land; you be the judge.” The […]

Forgotten Bronx Els, Subways, Railroads and Trolley Lines

All of the Manhattan Els had extensions or connections in the Bronx. The first Subway still has its elevated structure running up Broadway to Van Cortlandt Park Terminal. However, some of the original Elevated extensions, connections and terminals in the Bronx have been gone longer than the number years they existed. Some Railroad Lines and terminals have […]

Historic Mansions on Long Island – Coindre Hall

Coindre Hall, originally called West Neck Farm, is a 40-room, 80,000-square-foot (7,400 m2) mansion in the style of a medieval French château constructed in 1912 for pharmaceutical magnate George McKesson Brown. The home was designed by Clarence Luce, a Paris architect. It overlooks 34 acres (14 ha) of rolling land including a boathouse on the north shore of Long Island adjacent […]

North Brother Island,The Bronx, NEW YORK CITY

Home to the infamous “Typhoid Mary” and the worst loss of life in New York’s history until September 11, 2001. North Brother Island, located on the East River between the Bronx and Riker’s Island, is an island with a fascinating and tragic history. The island was uninhabited until 1885, when the city purchased the island in order […]

10 secret subway tunnels in New York City

Just like the rest of New York City, our 115-year-old subway system consists of many layers, each of which provides a glimpse into a sliver of the city’s history. However, even abandoned underground spaces don’t stay neglected for long. While some of NYC’s old tunnels and stations seem to have been neglected for good, many […]