Yorkville, Manhattan

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Yorkville, as seen from a highrise on East 87th Street
Yorkville, as seen from a highrise on East 87th Street
Location in New York City
Coordinates: 40°46′34″N 73°57′00″W / 40.776°N 73.950°W / 40.776; -73.950Coordinates: 40°46′34″N 73°57′00″W / 40.776°N 73.950°W / 40.776; -73.950
Country United States
State New York
CityNew York City
Community DistrictManhattan 8[1]
 • Total1.27 km2 (0.492 sq mi)
 • Total35,221
 • Density28,000/km2 (72,000/sq mi)
 • Median income$103,234
Time zoneUTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−4 (EDT)
ZIP Codes
10028, 10075, 10128
Area codes212, 332, 646, and 917

Yorkville is a neighborhood in the Upper East Side of Manhattan, New York City. Its southern boundary is East 72nd Street, its northern East 96th Street, its western Third Avenue, and its eastern the East River. Yorkville is among the city's most affluent neighborhoods.[3]

Yorkville is part of Manhattan Community District 8, and its primary ZIP Codes are 10028, 10075, and 10128.[1] It is patrolled by the 19th Precinct of the New York City Police Department.


Looking west at 90th Street and Second Avenue

Early history[edit]

Pre-colonization, Yorkville was an undeveloped area of forests and streams. In August 1776, George Washington stationed half of his Continental Army in Manhattan and the other half in Brooklyn. Many troops in the Yorkville area on Manhattan's Upper East Side were in defensive positions along the East River to protect a possible retreat off Long Island, and to inflict damage on invading land and sea British forces.[4] Following their August 27 defeat in the Battle of Long Island, the Continentals implemented an orderly pivoting retreat in the Yorkville area, leading the enemy to entice the Continentals to fight by piping "Fly Away", about a fox running away from hounds. The Continentals' disciplined northerly retreat led to the successful Battle of Harlem Heights in September 1776.[5]

In 1815, the Upper East Side was a farmland and market garden district.[6] The Boston Post Road traversed the Upper East Side, locally called the Eastern Post Road; milepost 6 was near the northeast corner of Third Avenue and 81st Street. From 1833 to 1837 the New York and Harlem Railroad, one of the earliest railway systems in the United States, was extended through the Upper East Side along Fourth Avenue (later renamed Park Avenue).[7] A hamlet grew near the 86th Street station, becoming the Yorkville neighborhood as gradual yet steady commercial development occurred. The current street grid was laid-out between 1839 and 1844 as part of the Commissioners' Plan of 1811, so the Eastern Post Road was abandoned. The community had been referred to as Yorkville before 1867.[8]

By 1850, a significant proportion of the inhabitants of the area were the Germans and Irish that helped build the Croton Aqueduct.[9] The area was included in the 19th administrative district, whose boundaries were 40th and 86th Street.[10] In 1858, trams were built along Second and Third Avenues. After the American Civil War, mansions replaced slums in Yorkville.[10] On December 30, 1878, the IRT Third Avenue Line opened, followed by the IRT Second Avenue Line in August 1879.[11]

Ethnic settlement[edit]

For much of the 19th and into the 20th centuries, Yorkville was a mostly German enclave of middle- to working-class families. Over time, many people of Czech, Slovak, Irish, Polish, Hungarian, and Lebanese descent moved in.[12] The neighborhood became more affluent.[13]

From 1880, Yorkville became a destination for German-born immigrants. However, by the 1900s, many German residents moved to Yorkville and other neighborhoods from "Kleindeutschland" (Little Germany) on the Lower East Side after the General Slocum disaster on June 15, 1904. The ship caught fire in the East River just off the shores of Yorkville, leading family members to move closer to the site of the incident.[14] Most of the passengers on the ship were German.[15][16] In addition, the general trend towards moving to the suburbs reduced the German population in Manhattan; by 1930, most German New Yorkers lived in Queens.

On 86th Street, in the central portion of Yorkville, there were many German shops, restaurants and bakeries. Yorkville became the melting pot of populations arriving from various regions of the Prussian-dominated German Empire and its colonies, where many cultures spoke German. In the 1930s, the neighborhood was the home base of Fritz Julius Kuhn's German American Bund, the most notorious pro-Nazi group in 1930s United States, which led to spontaneous protests by other residents.[17] Yorkville was a haven for refugees from Nazi Germany in the 1940s, and from refugees from communist regimes in the 1950s and 1960s. The neighborhood is the site of the annual Steuben Parade, a large German-American celebration.[18]

The largest non-German group were the Irish,[19] who mostly lived in an area bounded by 81st and 85th Streets, and Lexington and Fifth Avenues. They attended mass at such churches as St. Ignatius Loyola on 84th Street and Park Avenue, Our Lady of Good Counsel (90th Street) and the Church of St. Joseph (87th Street). There were many Irish bars including Finnegan's Wake, Dorrian's Red Hand Restaurant, Ireland's 32, Carrol's Hideaway, O'Brien's and Kinsale Tavern. Until the late 1990s, New York's St. Patrick's Day Parade ended at 86th Street and Third Avenue, the historical center of Yorkville.[20] In addition, Jews also lived on Second Avenue.[11]

79th Street was a hub for the Austro-Hungarian populace. Popular restaurants included the Viennese Lantern, Tokay, Hungarian Gardens, Robert Heller's Cafe Abbazia at 2nd Avenue, Budapest and the Debrecen.[21] There were also a number of butcher stores and businesses that imported goods from Hungary. Churches included St. Stephen Catholic Church and the Hungarian Reformed Church on East 82nd Street. In addition, Czechs, Poles and Slovaks lived from 65th to 73rd Street. Besides Ruc, a Czech restaurant off Second Avenue, Praha on Second Avenue, and Varsata on East 75th, there were sokol halls on 67th and 71st Streets. There were other Czech and Slovak businesses, such as Czech butcher shops, poultry and grocery stores, and shops that sold imported goods such as Bohemian books, leather products and crystal.[21]

Recent history[edit]

A sidewalk clock on 1501 Third Avenue

Around the late 1920s, Yorkville's ethnic diversity was beginning to wane. In 1926, the New York Times wrote of Yorkville's changing ethnic makeup:

Yorkville, for well-nigh two decades known to connoisseurs of east side life as the exclusive domain of Czechoslovaks, Hungarians and Germans, is slowly giving up its strongly accentuated Central European character and gradually merging into a state of colorless impersonality…[10]

In 1928, a one-block section of Sutton Place north of 59th Street, and all of Avenue A north of that point, was renamed York Avenue to honor U.S. Army Sergeant Alvin York, who received the Medal of Honor for attacking a German machine gun nest during World War I's Meuse-Argonne Offensive.[22][23][24]

The dismantling of the Third Avenue El in 1955 led to the demolition of many mansions. This led to the acceleration of the exodus of Yorkville residents. Over the years, this trend continued. Thus, in the 1980s, a building for members of the German gymnastic society Turners, at the intersection of 86th Street and Lexington Avenue, was demolished. Cafe Mozart, on 86th Street between Second and Third Avenues, was also demolished. In their place were built high-rise residential complexes.[11][21]

By the turn of the 21st century, East 82nd Street was co-named St. Stephen of Hungary Way. The area from East 79th to 83rd Streets, spanning approximately four blocks east-west, is colloquially known as Little Hungary.[25]


76th Street between Second and Third Avenues

Based on data from the 2010 United States Census, the population of Yorkville was 77,942, an increase of 1,174 (1.5%) from the 76,768 counted in 2000. Covering an area of 319.14 acres (129.15 ha), the neighborhood had a population density of 244.2 inhabitants per acre (156,300/sq mi).[26]

The racial makeup of the neighborhood was 76.0% (59,233) white, 3.7% (2,858) African American, 0.1% (51) Native American, 9.3% (7,226) Asian, 0.0% (25) Pacific Islander, 0.3% (216) from other races, and 1.9% (1,466) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 8.8% (6,867) of the population.[27]

The racial composition of Yorkville changed moderately from 2000 to 2010. The most significant changes were the increase in the Asian population by 41% (2,117), the increase in the Hispanic / Latino population by 18% (1,024), and the decrease in the white population by 4% (2,201). The Black population increased by 2% (64) and remained small, as did the population of all other races, which increased by 11% (170).[28]

The median income for a household in Yorkville is almost twice the average for the city, at $85,724.[29]

Police and crime[edit]

Yorkville is patrolled by the 19th Precinct of the NYPD, located at 153 East 67th Street.[30] The 19th Precinct ranked 14th safest out of 69 patrol areas for per-capita crime in 2010.[31]

The 19th Precinct has a lower crime rate than in the 1990s, with crimes across all categories having decreased by 84.5% between 1990 and 2019. The precinct reported 0 murders, 18 rapes, 171 robberies, 138 felony assaults, 223 burglaries, 1,658 grand larcenies, and 65 grand larcenies auto in 2019.[32]

Fire safety[edit]

Engine Co. 22/Ladder Co. 13/Battalion 10

Yorkville is served by two New York City Fire Department (FDNY) fire stations:[33]

  • Engine Co. 44 – 221 East 75th Street[34]
  • Engine Co. 22/Ladder Co. 13/Battalion 10 – 159 East 85th Street[35]

Post offices and ZIP Codes[edit]

Yorkville is located in three primary ZIP Codes. From south to north, they are 10075 (between 76th and 80th Streets), 10028 (between 80th and 86th Streets), and 10128 (north of 86th Street). In addition, 500 East 77th Street in Yorkville has its own ZIP Code, 10162.[36] The United States Postal Service operates three post offices in Yorkville:

  • Cherokee Station – 1483 York Avenue[37]
  • Gracie Station – 229 East 85th Street[38]
  • Yorkville Station – 1617 Third Avenue[39]


Schools and higher education[edit]

The New York City Department of Education operates several public schools in the area.

The City University of New York has its administrative offices in Yorkville.[40] In addition Fordham Graduate Housing is located on East 81st Street between York and East End Avenues.[41]

The Lycée Français de New York is located on East 75th Street between York and East End Avenues. Further north, East Side Middle School is located on 91st Street between First and Second Avenues. The Trevor Day School is located four blocks north, on 95th Street between First and Second Avenues.


The New York Public Library (NYPL) operates two branches near Yorkville. The Yorkville branch is located at 222 East 79th Street. The branch, a Carnegie library, opened in 1902 and was renovated in 1986–1987. The three-story space is listed on the New York State Register of Historic Places and the National Register of Historic Places.[42] The Webster branch is located at 1465 York Avenue. The branch was founded in 1893 as the Webster Free Library, and the current Carnegie library structure opened in 1906.[43]


The New York City Subway's 86th Street and 96th Street stations, served by the Second Avenue Subway (Q train), serve much of Yorkville.[44] Meanwhile, Western Yorkville is served by 77th Street, 86th Street and 96th Street stations on the IRT Lexington Avenue Line (6 and <6>​ trains),[44] one block west of Yorkville's western boundary at 3rd Avenue.[45] The bus routes M15, M15 SBS, M31, M72, M79 SBS, M86 SBS, M96, M98, M101, M102, M103 of the New York City Bus also operate in Yorkville.[46]

Formerly, Eastern Yorkville was very far from any subway connections, and had among the farthest walks in Manhattan to any subway stations.[12] From 2007 to 2017, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority built the Second Avenue Subway's 86th Street and 96th Street stations, leading to increased residential construction and real estate prices in advance of the opening of the new subway line.[47]

Yorkville is served by NYC Ferry's Soundview and Astoria routes, which stop at 90th Street.[48] The service started operating on August 15, 2018.[49][50]

Prominent locations[edit]

Notable residents[edit]

Residents of Yorkville have included:

In popular culture[edit]



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  13. ^ Gerald Handel (2000). Making a Life in Yorkville: Experience and Meaning in the Life-Course Narrative of an Urban Working-Class Man. Contributions in Sociology Series, 130; ABC-Clio ebook. Greenwood Publishing Group. pp. 1, 149. ISBN 0313313075.
  14. ^ King, Gilbert. "A Spectacle of Horror – The Burning of the General Slocum; The deadliest disaster in New York before 9/11 killed many women and children and ultimately erased a German community from the map of Manhattan.", Smithsonian magazine, February 21, 2012. Accessed May 18, 2016. "The men of Little Germany were suddenly without families. Funerals were held for more than a week, and the desolate schoolyards of Kleindeutschland were painful reminders of their loss. Many widowers and broken families moved uptown to Yorkville to be closer to the scene of the disaster, establishing a new Germantown on Manhattan’s Upper East Side."
  15. ^ Collins, Glenn (June 8, 2004). "A 100-Year-Old Horror, Through 9/11 Eyes; In the Sinking of the Slocum, a Template For the Arc of a City's Grief and Recovery". The New York Times. Retrieved November 20, 2007. The disaster helped accelerate the flight of Germans from the Lower East Side to Yorkville and other neighborhoods, although there were other motivations as well. 'The very dense old housing on the Lower East Side was no longer attractive to upwardly mobile Germans,' said Dr. John Logan, director of the Center for Social and Demographic Analysis at the State University of New York at Albany.
  16. ^ Strausbaugh, John (September 14, 2007). "Paths of Resistance in the East Village". The New York Times. Retrieved December 29, 2007. On June 15, 1904, about 1,200 people from St. Mark's Evangelical Lutheran Church (323 Sixth Street, between First and Second Avenues, the site of the Community Synagogue since 1940) died when the steamship the General Slocum, taking them on a day trip up the East River, burned. It was the deadliest disaster in the city before Sept. 11, 2001. It traumatized the community and hastened residents' flight to uptown areas like Yorkville.
  17. ^ a b Noble, Barbara Presley (July 23, 1989). "If You're Thinking of Living In: Yorkville". The New York Times. Retrieved July 31, 2010.
  18. ^ David W. Dunlap (April 19, 2008). "In the Heart of Yorkville, Life Has Changed for German Catholics". The New York Times. Archived from the original on November 2, 2015. Retrieved January 12, 2013.
  19. ^ "The History of Yorkville" by Kathryn A. Jolowicz
  20. ^ "A Guide To The NYC St. Patrick's Day Parade", CBS New York, March 15, 2013
  21. ^ a b c "Letters; Yorkville Recalled". The New York Times. July 3, 1983. Retrieved July 31, 2010.
  22. ^ Gray, Christopher. " Streetscapes/Sutton Place, Sutton Place South and One Sutton Place North; A Prestigious Enclave With a Name in Question", The New York Times, September 21, 2003. Accessed December 27, 2007.
  23. ^ Pollak, Michael. "F. Y. I.", The New York Times, August 7, 2005. Accessed October 16, 2007. "In 1928, Sutton Place from 59th to 60th Street, and Avenue A north of 60th, were renamed York Avenue in honor of Sgt. Alvin C. York (1887–1964), a World War I hero from Tennessee and a recipient of the Medal of Honor."
  24. ^ During his attack on October 8, 1918, York captured four German officers and 128 men and several guns. "Medal of Honor Recipients – World War I". United States Army Center of Military History.
  25. ^ "Little Hungary", Forgotten New York
  26. ^ Table PL-P5 NTA: Total Population and Persons Per Acre – New York City Neighborhood Tabulation Areas*, 2010, Population Division – New York City Department of City Planning, February 2012. Accessed May 18, 2016.
  27. ^ Table PL-P3A NTA: Total Population by Mutually Exclusive Race and Hispanic Origin – New York City Neighborhood Tabulation Areas*, 2010, Population Division – New York City Department of City Planning, March 29, 2011. Accessed May 18, 2016.
  28. ^ "Race / Ethnic Change by Neighborhood" (Excel file). Center for Urban Research, The Graduate Center, CUNY. May 23, 2011. Retrieved March 21, 2020.
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  64. ^ |19820/Bert-Lahr/ "Bert Lahr"[permanent dead link], Turner Classic Movies
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  73. ^ Adams, Frank S. "End Papers: SENATOR ROBERT F. WAGNER and the Rise of American Liberalism. By J. Joseph Huthmacher. 362 pages. Atheneum. $10.", The New York Times, December 20, 1968. Accessed May 20, 2016. " How Bob Wagner, who came here as a boy of 9 from his native Germany and grew up in Yorkville, where his father was a janitor, became one of the key members of the New Deal and helped shape the basic labor-industrial relationships that still exist today is told in great detail in this sound but not very lively book by a Rutgers history professor."
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External links[edit]