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Peter Stuyvesant's farm comprised most of the land that today is considered the East Village from Broadway to the East River from 5th Street to 17th Street. In the early 19th Century, the farm was subdivided into building lots. Most were developed by wealthy Villagers who built lovely brick townhouses. Some of these original houses still stand, such as The Merchant's House, as do famous landmarks such as Cooper Union, where Lincoln gave his "Might Makes Right" speech catapulting him to the presidency. Others were razed to build apartment houses, dormitories, churches and the like.

This neighborhood has become a patchwork of ethnic enclaves including Ukrainians, Poles, Jews, Italians, Indians and Latinos. One can see this when strolling around the streets lined with restaurants including the 2nd Avenue Deli, The Famous Kiev, Venierio's Pastry Shop and Passage to India.

In the 1950's the area attracted a young artistic crowd that gave birthto the Beat Generation such as Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, William Burroughs and Gregory Corso. In the 1970's the neighborhood attracted yet again a new group, this time musicians, whose music debuted at CBGB's and launched a new kind of Rock. Groups such as The Ramones, Blondie, Patti Smith, The Talking Heads and The Dave Matthews Band changed rock music forever.

Bookshops lined Fourth Avenue at one time filling the great demand the Village residents had for entertainment and enlightenment. The few survivors include the Strand, but not at its original location.



Herman Melville @ 103 Fourth Avenue

#2 Allen Ginsberg @ 206 East 7th Street
#3 Jack Kerouac @ 501 East 11th Street
#4 Washington Irving @ 434 Lafayette Street, near Astor Place
#5 Norman Mailer @ 39 First Avenue
#6 James Fenimore Cooper @ 6 St. Marks Place in 1834
#7 W.H. Auden @ 77 St. Marks Place
#8 Emma Goldman at 210 East 13th Street
#9 The Merchants House


Marilyn Weigner Associates, Inc.

41 West 12th Street, New York, NY 10011
Phone (212) 851-6314; Fax (212)388-0843
E-mail: info@mwavillage.com