Historic Places to Visit in NYC with Centuries of CharacterColorfully Historic Places to Visit in NYC
One of the most incredible things about New York City is how it's always changing. Centuries of stories surround perceptive passersby, enriching everything from a stroll through the East Village, to meetings in Washington Square Park. With a little knowledge of its historic places, NYC transforms into a wonderland of American history. Here are a few to explore:
One of the first examples of city planning in the U.S., this neighborhood surrounds a 2-acre private park - one of only three in the state. Other historic facts include:
• During the Civil War Draft Riots, Union soldiers defended the park from its interior.
• Two of the city's first apartment buildings were built here.
• The statue in the middle of the park is of actor Edwin Booth, brother to Abraham Lincoln's assassin.
Washington Square Park
An iconic Greenwich Village landmark, this eponymous park has been a nexus of NYC culture for nearly 200 years. Historic standouts include:
• Once divided by Minetta Creek, the area belonged to American Indians until Dutch settlers drove them out in the 1600s, giving the land to slaves.
• A former public burial ground, over 20,000 bodies are buried beneath the park.
• Protesting NYU's usage of prison workers, the city's first labor march started here in 1834.
The East Village
A place made famous by the Beats in the 1950s and hippies in the 1960s, The East Village is most known for its influence on American arts, such as:
• Concert venues frequented by Andy Warhol, Velvet Underground, The Grateful Dead, The Who, Pink Floyd, Jimi Hendrix, and Led Zeppelin.
• CBGB, the now infamous birthplace of punk, where the Ramones made their name.
• Resident post-modern art legends like Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat.