The old settlement of New Amsterdam has grown into New York City’s Financial District
This island of neighborhoods can be divided into downtown, midtown and uptown
The Battery to Chambers St
Filling in the old downtown piers, Battery Park City is a modern residential development with a riverfront park built in the 1970s
Factory lofts, college, film industry and families make Tribeca a unique neighborhood in New York City
City Hall Park, African Burial Ground National Monument, Foley Square court houses, NYPD headquarters and the entrance to the Brooklyn Bridge
A Latin and Chinese neighborhood along the Manhattan waterfront between the Brooklyn and Manhattan bridges
Now a chic shopping district and home of the Whitney Museum of American Art, the High Line and the Standard Hotel
Stonewall Inn, Village Vanguard, IFC Center, Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe, NYC Pride Parade, VolvoTango
Astor Place, St. Marks, Tompkins Square Park, Webster Hall, Nublu, DROM and the Nuyorican Poets Cafe
This district of art galleries, night clubs and dance studios includes the High Line, Chelsea Market, Madison Square Garden and the Joyce Theater
From 14th St to 59th St
From 59th St to Inwood
Ballet Hispánico, American Museum of Natural History, Beacon Theatre, Symphony Space, Thanksgiving Parade, Cinco de Mayo Parade
SummerStage, Tango and the Metropolitan Museum of Art make Central Park a beloved place for New Yorkers to relax
92nd Street Y, Americas Society, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Guggenheim, Jewish Museum, Frick Collection, Sotheby’s
Columbia University dominates, but there is also the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, Riverside Park, Riverside Church, General Grant Memorial and the Manhattan School of Music
The soul of New York City is at the Apollo Theater, Ginny’s at the Red Rooster, Minton’s Playhouse, Paris Blues and around
East Harlem “El Barrio” or “Spanish Harlem” is a Puerto Rican neighborhood. Latin kids went to jazz clubs in Harlem. Black kids went to Latin clubs in Spanish Harlem and we got latin jazz and salsa.
Latin in the Americas is Native American + European + African.
What is now New York City, western Long Island, and New Jersey was the land of the indigenous Lenape people.
The old Lenape village was in Inwood at the northern tip of Manhattan. We called the island Manahatta, meaning “land of many hills.” The site of the old village is the most beautiful quiet spot in Manhattan. There are “Indian Caves” nearby.
The old Lenape trading post at the southern tip of Manhattan became the home of Manhattan’s first immigrantJuan Rodriguez (Jan Rodrigues in Dutch or João Rodrigues in Portuguese). He was Portuguese-African – Dominican and “immigrated” from Santo Domingo.
The old trading post became the Alexander Hamilton U.S. Customs House. The building is now the National Museum of the American Indian. It is part of the Smithsonian.
The original Dutch settlement below Wall Street was founded in 1624. It was part of a burst of Dutch energy that came after breaking away from the Spanish Netherlands.
New Amsterdam wasn’t Latin, but the energy that created it was in direct opposition to the Latin culture of Spanish kings and Roman Catholic popes.
Authoritarianism consumes everything and destroys individual initiative. In contrast, the Dutch did business with everyone and founded the idea of the corporation. That was the idea that people can get together around a common goal and share the fruits of their common labors. Corporations can get out of hand, but this idea of common benefit for common labor is the founding idea of New York City and American democracy.
The old fortifications on what is now Wall Street were built by African slaves to keep out the Lenape.
New York City’s first Jewish community was a group of twenty-three Sephardic (Spanish & Portuguese) Jewish immigrants. They were fleeing the Spanish Inquisition in Brazil. They arrived in what was then Dutch New Amsterdam in 1654.
There was once an African slave market at the east end of Wall Street at Pearl Street. It was the second biggest slave market in our country, after Charleston, North Carolina. New York City’s slaves came from Cuba through Pier 17 which is now the South Street Seaport.
Today New York City is the capital of the Latin world, and capital of the world.