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St. George, Staten Island

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St. George, Staten Island

1930 Fort Hill home modeled after a Spanish castle
St Peters Roman Catholic Church

St. George is a neighborhood on the northeastern tip of Tompkinsville and on the west by the neighborhood of New Brighton.

Contents

  • History 1
    • Colonial days 1.1
    • The heyday 1.2
    • Revival 1.3
  • Culture 2
    • Museums and memorials 2.1
    • Fine arts 2.2
    • St. George Theater 2.3
    • In popular culture 2.4
  • Notable residents 3
  • Education 4
  • Transportation 5
  • See also 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8

History

Colonial days

Fort Hill,[1][2] one of the hills overlooking the harbor, was the location on Duxbury's Point or Ducksberry Point [3] fortified by the British during the American Revolutionary War. The area was primarily rural through the early 19th century.

The name was derived not from the St. George Cricket Grounds was part of that complex, but only lasted a few years.

The heyday

In the 1830s, the area facing the Kill Van Kull became a fashionable resort area, with the construction of several elegant hotels along St. Mark's Place across from the present site of Curtis High School (the oldest high school on Staten Island). The grandest and last of these hotels was the Hotel Castleton, built in 1889 and destroyed by fire in 1907. In 1918, the Staten Island Institute of Arts and Sciences moved to its present location in the neighborhood. The United States Coast Guard operated a facility in the neighborhood until moving to Governors Island in 1967. The Office Building and U.S. Light-House Depot Complex was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1978.[4] In the early 20th century the neighborhood grew rapidly: municipal ferry service to Manhattan began in 1905. The neighborhood had several elegant buildings by the architectural firm of Carrère and Hastings. These included a branch of the New York Public Library (1906), the present Staten Island Borough Hall (1906), and the Richmond County Courthouse (1919).

In 1924, the "Saint George" North Shore communities, as far away as Mariners Harbor to the west and South Beach and Grasmere to the south).

Revival

The community underwent a revival in the late 1990s and property values have continued to rise since 2000. In 1994, the Daniel D. Tompkins, the Anson Phelps-Stokes mansion and the Daniel Low mansion. Another prominent landowner was August Belmont, whose name is enshrined in Belmont Place. Many of the houses remaining today represent the homes and summer homes of the Low-Tompkins extended family and friends.

The residential Fort Hill area is home to many professionals who commute daily to Manhattan on the ferry, and includes many well-tended examples of Victorian, Tudor, and art deco architecture, in addition to one house modeled after a Spanish castle.[5][6] Another popular upscale residential development, Bay Street Landing, abuts the bay between the ferry terminal and the head of Victory Boulevard. Many condominium buildings are currently being built along the shore, and near the ferry terminal, as they offer unsurpassed views of lower Manhattan and easy access via the free Staten Island Ferry.

The National Lighthouse Museum [7] (listed on the National Register of Historic Places) and the adjacent St. George post office are immediately east of the St. George ferry terminal.

The Richmond County Bank Ballpark, the home of the Staten Island Yankees, a minor league farm club of the New York Yankees opened in 2001. The stadium offers dramatic views of the harbor and the Manhattan skyline.

The renovated

  • St. George Civic Association web site
  • St. George Historic Preservation web site

External links

  1. ^ a b
  2. ^
  3. ^ NYPL Old Names on Staten Island
  4. ^
  5. ^ [1]
  6. ^ [2]
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^ http://www.nytimes.com/2007/09/23/nyregion/thecity/23rema.html?_r=1&n=Top/Reference/Times%20Topics/Subjects/I/Irish-Americans&oref=slogin
  10. ^ http://www.nytimes.com/2007/10/07/nyregion/thecity/07hips.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^ "St. George Library Center." New York Public Library. Retrieved on December 22, 2008.
  15. ^

References

See also

The Staten Island Railway[15] and the Staten Island Ferry.

Transportation

[14]

Curtis High School is located on 105 Hamilton Ave. Ralph R. McKee Career & Technical Education High School is located on 206 Saint Marks Place.

Education

Actor Paul Newman and his wife, actor Joanne Woodward, lived in the Art Deco building The Ambassador on Daniel Low Terrace between Crescent Avenue and Fort Hill Circle in their early days in film. Actor Martin Sheen lived in the same building, and his son Emilio Estevez was born there.

Notable residents

Among St. George's recent appearances is the murder scene in

When the movie industry was centered on Long Island, scenes in many films were shot on Staten Island, and several actors had residences in St. George, or built houses for their relatives.

In popular culture

Renovated in 2004, St. George Theatre is a landmarked building. A variety of activities, including educational programs, architectural tours, television and film shoots, concerts, comedy, Broadway touring companies, and children's shows take place there.[13]

The main architect was Eugene De Rosa; he was assisted by Staten Island resident James Whitford, who was known as the “dean of Staten Island architects.” Whitford also designed the Ritz, Liberty and Victory theaters, none of which exist today. The ornate interior of the theater was designed by Nestor Castro, the art director for the Libman-Spanjer Corporation, which designed the interiors of many theaters in the Times Square area. Most of the elaborate architecture visible to theater patrons is Castro's work. The interior is a variety of Spanish and Italian Baroque styles. The movie and vaudeville house outshone most of its competitors, including Manhattan's Capitol Theater on Broadway. The theater has unobstructed seating, a $25,000 Wurlitzer organ, an advanced cooling and heating system, one of the largest cantilevered balconies ever built, velvet seats, gilded balconies, and grand staircases.

Construction began on the 2,800-seat William Fox, whose name lives on in the Fox Television Network and 20th Century Fox film studio.

The restored St. George Theater
Hyatt Street and the unassuming exterior of the St. George Theater

St. George Theater

In 2007, several media reports noted that artists and musicians were moving to Staten Island's North Shore so they could be near Manhattan but afford more space to live and work in.[10][11][12]

Fine arts

The St. George waterfront is the location of the Postcards September 11 memorial.

In 1997 lighthouse organizations across the United States banded together to create a National Lighthouse Museum, which will tell the story of the United States Lighthouse Service. The museum will feature interactive exhibits and displays on the history, technology, and architecture of lighthouses, lightships and other aids to navigation, from primitive fire beacons to the Global Positioning System. The site selected is the old USLHS/US Coast Guard “super depot” at St. George, which was the major center for lighthouse supply, maintenance and experimentation for nearly 150 years. The site consists of 10 acres (40,000 m2) of waterfront property with five historic USLHS buildings, a public plaza and an 850-foot (260 m) pier.

The Staten Island Institute of Arts & Sciences is located just two blocks west of the Staten Island Ferry Terminal, It explores the arts, natural science, and local history of the island.

Postcards
Staten Island Museum

Museums and memorials

Culture

Houses in St. George
Victorian home in the St. George Historic District 
Mansion on Daniel Low Terrace 
Hyatt Street, future piazza 
A Tudor-style home on Fort Hill where the British fort once stood. 

The Hyatt Street side of a municipal parking lot faces the St. George Theater. This part of the lot is noted for the greenmarket held on it during spring, summer and fall. The lot encompasses a paved over graveyard of the former quarantine that has led to some controversy.[9]

[8]

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