IWalked New York City’s Central Park (History)
Central Park was the first pubic landscaped park in all of the United States and had its earliest origins when the city began to once again utilize its right of eminent domain across seven hundred acres for the development of a park for the enjoyment of city. The land at the time consisted largely on swamps, pig farms and limestone quarries.
The team of Calvert Vaux and Frederick Law Olmsted were hired in 1858 to design the park which they did via their plan which they called the “Greensward Plan.” Greensward is an English term for the laying of fresh green turf or grass. Their elaborate plans for the 843-acre park included sixty miles of paths which would never intersect and require the planting of more than 270,000 trees. Perhaps the largest task though involved the blasting of some of the limestone quarries. It is said that more gun powder was used in blasting these limestone quarries than was used in all of the Battle of Gettysburg during the Civil War. Through the efforts of some 20,000 workers who hauled some 10 million carts of dirt and stone, New York was officially graced with one of the grandest parks of any major city in the world when Central Park was officially unveiled in 1873.
To learn more about the history of Central Park you may visit www.centralparknyc.org and they actually offer two fantastic free audio tours of the park which you can experience yourself.
Address: Bordered by Central Park South (West 59th Street), Central Park West (8th Ave), 5th Avenue (East side) and West 110th Street (North side), New York City
IWalked Audio Tours To See This Site: New York City’s Upper West Side (Free Bonus Edition) and New York City’s Upper West Side. (Purchase/download these MP3 tours here. iPhone application tours are available here. Please note, all NYC tours are now available as in-app purchases upon download of our FREE NYC Lite application, which includes a free 1.5 hour tour of a portion of the Upper West Side.)