You Are History
Hello from Washington Square Park! I'm a red-tailed hawk and I don't just eat rats, I've even eaten a squirrel or two and pigeons are my favorite! I've seen a lot in New York City. I'm not a swinger though, I usually mate for life and It's mostly monogamy for me. In Washington Square Park I'm nearly at the top of the food chain, I hunt during the day so watch out pigeons lazily pecking at pizza, I'm gonna get you!
Book: A pocket guide to Pigeon Watching by Rosemary Mosco
I Heart Beavers:
I sure got rich on these beaver pelts. I killed millions of beavers to make hats and gave guns and diseases to the indigenous people. But enough about the super duper negatives, does anyone remember the noble and beloved beaver of New York City? The area around Washington Square was full of them! If you need a quick reminder, just check out the beavers at the Astor Place subway station or take a look at the seal of New York City that features no less than 2 beavers! One more fun fact, the phrase "mad as a hatter" came from using mercury to waterproof beaver skins to use for hat making.
Book: Eager by Ben Goldfarb
Is an acorn a nut? It's definitely a nut! We got plenty of them here in Washington Square Park. Specifically, the acorn of the Northern Red Oak. Most of the animals in the park snack on them and indigenous people did too! They have tons of nutrients but if you're human and you don't cook them they will go in one end and quickly out the other.
Book: The Nature of Oaks, Doug Tallamy
Pehistory: Sapokanikan - a Lenape Village, located near the park.
1624: The Dutch West India Company establishes a settlement
1643: Half-free slaves receive land grant. Catalina Anthony, Maunuel Trumpeter, and Paulo D’ Angola are among the first settlers
1797: Burial ground - over 20,000 people are eventually buried, mostly unknowns and victims of various fevers
1826: Washington Square Park is officially created
1889: Construction of the Washington Square Arch begins
1911: Triangle Shirtwaist Fire (146 workers killed)
1915: 25,000 people march from the park to demand women’s suffrage
1961: Police fight with park musicians and locals in an event called the “Beatnik Riot”
2007: Park renovation begins, beginning budget is 16 million but ends up being 30.6 million.
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