Central Park 2: Seneca Village

When the city planners decided to build Central Park back in the 1850's, there were a lot of people living on the 843 acres that were to become the park. One community of about 260 residents was located near today's 86th Street and Central Park West, and it was known as Seneca Village. The majority of the residents were African-Americans, and this community was the largest group of African-American property owners in New York.
You can still see a remnant of Seneca Village today. If you enter the park at the Mariner's Gate at 85th street, follow the path until you come to a playground on your left. There's a slope to your right where you can see the corner of the foundations of a building. This was one of the African-American churches that was at the center of life in Seneca Village. There were several churches in this community. I believe that this one was A.M.E. Zion.


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