New York City, Manhattan Island, Casamayor Theodore Gerke discussed on Coast to Coast AM

Automatic TRANSCRIPT

John Batchelor show on Manhattan island than those who visit ten those live there. No, there is no way to get from one side of Manhattan to the other diagonally. You must watch walking right angles or you must drive in right angles. Where did that come from who's great idea was it to make it so difficult to go cross? Town Gerard Capelle? He has a new book city on a grid. How New York became New York. And this is a Walker because there's everybody to blame. And no one to blame Gerard. Congratulations and good evening. And let's go to the I suspect. His name is unlikely Casamayor Theodore Gerke born seventeen fifty five Mary's into the Roosevelt family. Of course, he was a surveyor. What was his original genius vision of the island growing north of the original city? The Dutch city good evening to you. Well, first of all John great to be with you. All right. Let's talk about Casimir Gort or I think I think maybe was often pronounced like gorlic. But, but there are no survivors. So it's anybody's guess. So we'll just go work and what he did was even prominent surveyor in in New York served in the revolution. And settled as a surveyor in New York City posted post war and the city had owned, and let's go back a step and understand sort of visually that the city then is essentially sixty thousand people in the very southern tip of in Hatton in what is now considered downtown below. I if listeners know where it is chamber street say where we're city hall is now everybody every New Yorker or or or the the the densely settled part of New York. With south of that, the very southern tip further up the island was most of it was owned by various people, but not many people live there was farms. It was gives country houses for some small settlements. But the key part is then in the middle of the island. The least desirable part of the island of the hillians depart, the boggy est valley part that was land that was owned by the city, and it was actually given to the city by the Dutch government when when New York was new Amsterdam, and it was given to the city because it was incredibly undesirable land. It was topographic -ly undesirable. It was also geographically undesirable because it was in the middle of the island, and you know, people forget Manhattan's at island. You know, if you want to be able to get on and off the island, you want to be near the edge of it not in the middle of it just actually when you're only. Transportation was your feet or or an animal? So these lands in the center of the island, recalled the the so-called common lands, and we can sort of place where they are there about thirteen or fourteen hundred acres, which is about one ninth of the area of of Manhattan. Totally they started at what is now what became Madison Square, which is twenty third street intersecting with Fifth Avenue and Broadway. Now, understand none of those roads were there, then although I should say the road, the predated Broadway was there called Bloomingdale road, which is a country road that ran up the the west side of the island, and these common lands sort of spread out very irregularly. These these these fourteen hundred acres or so up roughly along the lines on the east of what's what became third avenue and what on the west became seventh avenue up to about. About well, actually, sort of precisely to a point that is that would be ninetieth street and seventh avenue and how people are clicking off in their heads. Whereas ninetieth street and seventh avenue, oh, it's in the middle of central park. It doesn't actually exist. But in any case, so.

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