Westerleigh, Staten Island
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- 1 Geography
- 2 History
- 3 Education
- 4 Transportation
- 5 References
Westerleigh is located in the northwest quadrant of the borough and is bounded in the east by Manor Road, the west by the Martin Luther King Jr. Expressway, the south by Victory Boulevard and to the north by Forest Avenue. Westerleigh occupies high ground on Staten Island, which itself contains the highest point of land from Maine to Florida along the eastern coast of the United States, Todt Hill at 400 feet (120 m) above sea level. While not as high as Todt Hill, from certain vantage points Westerleigh affords views of Newark, New Jersey and further afield on a clear day. The neighborhood has an abundance of coniferous and deciduous trees; including acacia, blue spruce, cedar, chestnut, elm, honey locust, paulonia, pin and royal oak, sweet gum, sycamore, tulip poplar, yew and many types of pine, some of which reach 75 feet (23 m) or more in height.
Westerleigh first attracted notice when a temperance group, the National Prohibition Campground Association, bought 25 acres (10 ha) of land there in 1877, and named the property Prohibition Park — noted chiefly today for the fact that the official climate records for Staten Island are compiled at the site. Many of the local streets are named after early leaders of the Prohibition movement (Neal Dow, Clinton B. Fisk), or for states that supported anti-liquor laws (such as Maine and Ohio).
Some of Westerleigh's earliest residents excelled in letters, including Isaac K. Funk, co-founder of Funk and Wagnalls, and poet Edwin Markham. Heiress Amy Vanderbilt also once lived there, as does minor b-movie actor Brian "the Duke" Crimmins. The neighborhood gained much local attention for the abundance of patriotic decorations festooned on its homes in the aftermath of the September 11, 2001 attacks.
One of the oldest Boy Scout groups, Troop #2, was formed in Westerleigh, and still operates out of the Immanuel Union Church on Jewett Avenue. Westerleigh is also home to the oldest tennis club in the US, tennis having been introduced to the US (from England, via Bermuda) at the home here of Mary Ewing Outerbridge. She played the first game in the US at the Staten Island Cricket Club on an hourglass shaped court. The location, on College Avenue, still sports a tennis court.
Westerleigh Park acts as the unofficial heart of the North Shore neighborhood.
Westerleigh is served by a number of local and express buses.
Along Watchogue Road
Along Victory Boulevard
- S62/92 (travels between the St. George Ferry Terminal and Travis)
- S93 (travels between the College of Staten Island and Bay Ridge, Brooklyn)
Along Jewett Avenue
Along Forest Avenue
Along Watchogue Road
- X12 (travels between Arlington and West Midtown, Manhattan)
- X42 (travels between Arlington and West Midtown, Manhattan)