Mass Transit – 1837

The New York and Harlem Railroad was the first public streetcar service – mass transit – in New York City. The first line of horse-drawn carriages traveled from Prince Street to the Harlem Bridge on 4th Avenue (Park Avenue), reaching Harlem in 1837.

Below is an image of the early depot that serviced the horse-drawn streetcars.

Among the company’s founders was John Mason, a wealthy banker and president of Chemical Bank who was among the largest landowners in New York City. They decided to build their railroad on the eastern side of Manhattan Island, convinced that it would never be able to compete with steamboat traffic on the Hudson River.

The New York and Harlem Railroad eventually became the New York Central Railroad and then the Metro North we know today.

A train at about 103rd Street, headed south and about to go into the Park Avenue tunnel. You can just make out Marcus Garvey Park in the haze, above the last cars of the train.

4th Avenue (Park Avenue) presented a challenge with the drop from Yorkville down to East Harlem, so initially a trestle was built of wood – eventually to be replaced by the masonry structure we know today (98th Street to 111th Street). Beyond that is an increasingly fragile iron and steel structure that extends to the Harlem River (Metro North) Bridge.

You can see the 1950 film, here:

that shows a train coming into New York City, crossing the Harlem River, then going through East Harlem, and eventually entering the Park Avenue Tunnel.

New York Health and Hospitals Wants Your Feedback

The Harlem Community Advisory Board’s 2022 Annual Public Meeting

Wednesday, January 19, 2022

5:00pm Live via Webex

All are welcome to join. For more information, please call (212) 939-1369

HNBA Meeting on Tuesday, 7:00 PM

Join HNBA next week, on Tuesday the 14th, for our annual December/Holiday meeting.

Are you ready for holiday cooking with a twist of funny? 

Join stand-up comedian and host of the cooking/comedy show Dinner’s Ready Live (IGTV/YoutubeTV) for a night of fun cooking and big laughs. Dan will be teaching us how to make Spaghetti Carbonara from the refrigerator to the plate using simple ingredients. We encourage you to cook and laugh along! Here are the ingredients:


  • 4 SLICES BACON (can use turkey bacon too)
  • 1/2 CUP PEAS



We’ll also be joined by comedian Ryan Brown who will join us for Carbonara trivia!

If you’re vegetarian, leave off the Bacon. But don’t leave off your sense of humor and good cheer!  See you from the kitchen!

Holiday Tree Lighting


We Are Lighting The Tree @ 6 pm (Near The Pool)


Greater Calvary Baptist Church

(Across The Street From Park) 43-55 124th Street

FEATURING: Dancer/Choreographer Du’Bois Akeen

Holiday Songs Of Praise by Pastor Terrence L. Kennedy and The Reach Music Ministry
State Senator Cordell Cleare Coming & Councilmember Elect Kristin Jordan Richardson Invited
Masks Required

Grab and Go Refreshments

Marcus Garvey Park Tree Lighting

December 8th, at 6:00 PM.

124th Street and 5th Avenue.

Join the Marcus Garvey Park Alliance in the lighting of the holiday tree.

Under the Stoops

Along 5th Avenue, between 129/128th Streets, there are 3 brownstones in a row that still have grills that allow light into the under-the-stoop space.

As a result, you can see 3 houses through and during the day, illumination is unnecessary.

Let’s Work Towards Carbon Neutrality

NYC Accelerator is a free program through the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability committed to restoring NYC and its buildings. The Accelerator team experts work with building representatives to improve building’s energy and water efficiency through building upgrades which create healthier buildings, save owners and residents money on their utility bills, and improve local air quality. 

The program is looking to connect with small, multi-family building owners in Harlem so that NYC can reach its goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2050. We recognize the importance of The Harlem Neighborhood Block Association in Harlem and admire your dedication to your community. We would like to partner with your organization, at no cost to you, to educate building owners and residents in your community how they can improve their buildings utilizing funding from many local and state programs to boost their building’s energy performance while reducing carbon emissions, and ensuring healthier, cleaner air for Harlem residents.

Jazmine Espeut

Community Coordinator

P: 212.656.9198

E: [email protected]

A Holiday in Harlem (Well, actually Hartford, CT…)

Soul Train Tomorrow!

Head to Marcus Garvey Park on Saturday to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Soul Train and BET’s attempt to break a world record with the longest one ever.

Our Meeting with Mark Levine and The NYC Accelerator Program

We had a great meeting on October 12th with Mark Levine. If you missed it, and want to learn more about his vision for Manhattan (or learn more about the NYC Accelerator Program), please see: 

Passcode: 5Rn^1!L#

Sculpture in Marcus Garvey Park

On view through October 1, 2022, Thomas J Price: Witness celebrates a familiar everyday form rarely monumentalized within a public setting. In the artist’s words, “I want to interrogate [notions of] presence, movement, and freedom. Who do these spaces belong to? And what bodies are provided more or less autonomy to move with liberty through public [space]?” 

Thomas J Price: Witness is presented as part of The Studio Museum in Harlem’s series of collaborative initiatives, inHarlem, which are being undertaken while the Museum is preparing for the construction of its new building.

Stop by Marcus Garvey Park starting this October and view this monumental work. 

Traveling While Black

Make sure to visit the Schomburg Library before the end of the year to see the fantastic exhibit “Traveling While Black”. The Director, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, Kevin Young notes:

Since the start of their experience in the Americas, Black people have been defined by travel, displacement, and resistance. 

Whether in the horrors of the Middle Passage or the rebellion of Maroon communities made up of escaped slaves, travel has meant much—and something much more—for Africans in the Americas. This exhibition, our first as we celebrate The New York Public Library’s 125th anniversary and the Schomburg Center’s 95th, explores over a century of travel. Moving from the Great Migration of African Americans north and west at the start of the twentieth century to the restrictions and resistances of travel in the Jim Crow South and the Jane Crow North, Traveling While Black examines a history of travel, from those who found themselves exiles within their own country down to the pilgrims and pleasure seekers of our time. 

War marks many of the peregrinations of the last century, often offering African American soldiers their first glimpse of other cultures beyond the United States. They returned with a new energy and renewed hope, whether in the offerings of jazz after the Great War, or the opportunities abroad for expatriates after World War II. The freedom that African Americans sought at home and fought for abroad they often found in travel. Returning Black officers and recruits started motorcycle clubs and organized tour groups, traditions that continue today. The somewhat open road and the mostly great outdoors provided Black sojourners with literal and emotional vistas to revel in. 

While confronting restrictions from Jim Crow laws and surveillance by would-be law enforcement agencies stateside, everyday travel meant obeying unspoken rules of the road. Domestic journeys involved ingenuity, often employing the Green Book, that guide for Black travelers developed in Harlem by Victor Green. Carry your Green Book with you…you may need it! reads one tagline for the guides. The Schomburg Center retains the largest and most complete collection of Green Books in the world; in many cases we hold the only known copy. But as any number of African American guidebooks found here indicate, from runaways to resorts, the idea of escape has had larger resonances for Black culture. Questions surrounding Black bodies in motion—whether driving, walking, or traveling while Black—still persist, asking us to consider the meaning of migration, movement, and freedom. 

—Kevin Young

It’s My Park Day


You may have heard that the American Museum of Natural History has reopened its minerals and gems hall to universal acclaim.

On a recent visit to The Mignone Halls of Gems and Minerals, the exhibits tell the fascinating story of how the vast diversity of mineral species arose on our planet, how scientists classify and study them, and how we use them for personal adornment, tools, and technology. 

The galleries feature more than 5,000 specimens from 98 countries, and, of course, specimens from New York broken down by borough and location where found.

A number of the items on display are either from Harlem or were found at the edge of Harlem and speak to the fascinating geology beneath us all.


At this moment in time the Mt. Morris Park Historic District is facing a safety crisis!

Today, as we step outside our doors, walk down our streets or through our wonderful Marcus Garvey Park, we witness individuals in great distress, people who are unhoused, and others selling and using street drugs, and the overwhelming consequences of these collective crises. Under similar situations, MMPCIA was formed more than 40 years ago. So, again we take up the mantel to hold those accountable and bring back a sense of safety and well-being. With strong and active members, we will once again prevail.

Ways we are addressing this crisis include:

 1.  Working with local law enforcement, government agencies, elected officials and partnering with other local community-based organizations.  

2.  Updates to the community during our monthly meetings from relevant stakeholders and weekly updates on our new website (currently under construction).

3.  Developing a robust social media campaign.

4.  Gathering and sharing the personal stories of members of the community who are impacted by this crisis.

Madlyn Stokely

 President, MMPCIA

Meet Brad Lander and Tell Him What You Want for Harlem


Thursday, September 30

6 – 8pm EDT


This event’s address is private.

About this event

Join Brad Lander, Democratic nominee for New York City Comptroller and other community leaders for an in-person listening session, focused on the issues and priorities of Harlem.

Brad is excited to use the position of NYC Comptroller to best serve New Yorkers by making sure that city government is working for the people effectively and efficiently, and that city government is held accountable to its promises. To do this, we want to hear from you! Join us to speak directly to Brad, let us know what you want to see from city government, and what changes you would like to see in the coming years.

Event Partners and Co-hosts:

  • Representative Adriano Espaillat
  • Al Taylor, NYS Assemblyman
  • Diana Ayala, City Councilmember District 8

Brad has represented the 39th District in Brooklyn as a member of the New York City Council for over ten years, building a track record of defending workers rights, protecting tenants, and fighting to align the budget with progressive values. Brad serves as the Council’s Deputy Leader for Policy and co-founded the Council’s Progressive Caucus, helping to bring participatory budgeting to NYC.

Through his roles as Council member, community advocate, and long time New York City resident, Brad is eager to learn more about Harlem and connect with this community.

Exact location to be provided upon RSVP. Face mask required for entry.

And Up the Acropolis

If you haven’t taken the time to head to Marcus Garvey Park and see Susan Stair’s work, Ascending the Mountain, 2021, take the time.

07062021 Susan Stair artwork in Marcus Garvey Park eastside on steps going up to Watch Tower part 1&2.. part 3 in a few weeks

The public artwork is installed in three distinct sections along the staircase that leads up to the Harlem Fire Watchtower in Marcus Garvey Park. The first section is at the base of the stairs near the basketball courts which is also the best place to start and follow the story that the artwork tells. Image captions below share more information about how an urban forest that self seeded and grew up the mountain of Manhattan Schist in Harlem

07062021 Susan Stair artwork in Marcus Garvey Park eastside on steps going up to Watch Tower part 1&2.. part 3 in a few weeks

Created with mosaic tiles and clay impressions of bark, leaves and small branches from nearby trees.

Head to the staircase leading up from the basketball courts to view the work.

Also, in Marcus Garvey Park

Colleagues and Friends,

I invite you to the last presentation of Counting Tales, a video projection series where my work is featured by the collective ArtFormsUs in conjunction with Marcus Garvey Park; they will present a series of 7 original short videos whose general theme is “counting.”

Wednesday, September 29th

6:30 pm – 8:00 pm
Marcus Garvey Park Richard Rodgers Amphitheater
18 Mt Morris PW | Harlem NYC

The resounding theme appears in myriad forms: from the sounds of whales echoing the belching sounds of a bus, the artist’s movements reflect the sounds of the city; Ripples in street puddles are chanting numbers of family members. The middle passages losses are given new echoes in our current times; Consumption is demonstrated by the artist, hooded in plastic, roaming the city as she knits an endless train of plastic bags; Jazz, trees, and breathing underscore a sympathy for humanity; Counting leaves symbolizes the litany of counting deaths by Covid; the surreal slapstick of 3 disparate artists converges into bonding, and a ritual examines two of the foundational objects that brought Latinos and African Americans to the “New World.”

The roster of ArtFormsUs video artists include Capucine BourcartDominique de CockNoreen Dean Dresser, Undine Groeger, Salem KriegerLeah PollerViviane Rombaldi SeppeyXavier Roux and Allicette Torres. The members are multi-national, multi-disciplinary artists residing in Harlem.

For further information, visit:

ArtFormsUs thanks its sponsors Marcus Garvey Park, El Barrio Artspace, LMCC, WCA, Parlour 153, Red Seeds Art Studio, NYC Cultural Affairs, 77th Parallel Productions, Marcus Garvey Public Art and Wind Support.

Literacy Across Harlem!

TOTAL EQUITY NOW invites West, Central and East Harlem to the

9th Annual Literacy Across Harlem March, Book Drive & Community Celebration!

Saturday, October 2, 2021

12:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.


UGC Eats (Urban Garden Center) Notice

The Met Opera in Marcus Garvey Park

Marcus Garvey Park’s amphitheater will host OPENING NIGHT OF MET OPERA 5PM for pre show events with Terence Blanchard, maker of the opera “Fire Shut Up In My Bones” based on the NYT columnist Charles Blow’s memoir.

Please join us 5-6PM PRE SHOW EVENTS and 6PM LIVE SATELLITE FEED with opening remarks by LT GOVERNOR BRIAN BENJAMIN.



See more HERE:

Livestream Premiere of Met Opera Opening Night’s “Fire Shut Up in My Bones” – City Parks Foundation