Isham Park

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The entrance to the park on Broadway near Isham Street
Isham Park's central lawn in April, 2010

Isham Park is a 20-acre (81,000 m2) historic park located in the Inwood neighborhood of Manhattan, New York City. The park was created through gifts to the city from the Isham family of land from the William Bradley Isham estate. Isham (pronounced "EYE-sham") was a leather merchant who became a banker, and the estate was his country residence, purchased from Dr. Floyd T. Ferris' family. The estate included 24 acres, a two-story mansion, a greenhouse and a stable. After Isham died in 1911, his daughter, Julia Isham Taylor, presented parts of the estate to New York City in June of that year and also in October 1917. Isham's sister, Flora E. Isham, gave another tract in March 1912, and Isham's son, Samuel did the same in April 1915.[1][2] The city later expanded the park by purcharsing land in 1925 and 1927.[3]

The park once extended to the Harlem River, but after the creation of Inwood Hill Park and the reconfiguration of area streets, the boundary became, for the most part, Seaman Avenue, although the baseball fields across the street are considered to be park of Isham Park and not Inwood Hill Park.[4] The extent of the current park now equals that of the Isham estate. The Isham mansion, which originally came with the park gift, was torn down in the 1940s due to its deteriorating condition.[3]

The park sits roughly between Isham Street, Seaman Avenue and Inwood Hill Park, West 215th Street and the line where West 214th Street would normally be, part of which are stairs, and Broadway.[4]

Isham Park is noted at its southern end for some exposed marble outcroppings which date from the Cambrian period. This is a popular location for college geology classes to visit. There is a public garden in the northeastern corner. Much of the rest of the park has trees and brush growing in a rather wild manner, although the center of the park is a grass lawn. The park is popular with families with small children who appreciate the park's rolling topography and quiet nature. Many older children also enjoy the park as it serves as a social center for them.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Isham Park - History". New York City Department of Parks & Recreation. Retrieved June 29, 2016. 
  2. ^ Historical plaque in Isham Park
  3. ^ a b "Isham Park - Historical Sign". New York City Department of Parks & Recreation. Retrieved July 19, 2010. 
  4. ^ a b "Isham Park" New York City Geographic Information System map

Coordinates: 40°52′11″N 73°55′09″W / 40.86972°N 73.91917°W / 40.86972; -73.91917