Tompkins Square Park

E. 7th St. and Ave. A

From the City of New York/Parks & Recreation Historical Signs Program: This park honors Daniel D. Tompkins (1774–1825), who served as Governor of New York from 1807 to 1817 and as Vice President of the United States under James Monroe (1758-1831) ... more

From the City of New York/Parks & Recreation Historical Signs Program: This park honors Daniel D. Tompkins (1774–1825), who served as Governor of New York from 1807 to 1817 and as Vice President of the United States under James Monroe (1758-1831) from 1817 to 1825. Peter Stuyvesant (1610–1672), director general of the Dutch colony of New Netherland, owned this property during the 17th century. Tompkins later acquired it, and by the 19th century, it was marked for development as a public square. The Commissioners’ Plan of 1811 proposed a large market on this land stretching from First Avenue to the East River, but plans for the market never materialized. Bordered today by Avenues A and B, and 7th and 10th Streets, Tompkins Square Park was acquired by the City in 1834. Originally swampland, this site was graded and landscaped between 1835 and 1850. In 1866, the New York State Legislature ordered the City to remove a number of trees that had been planted at the time of the park’s creation to allow for an open parade ground for the Seventh Regiment of New York. A few Sycamore (Platanus occidentalis) trees were spared, and of those, three survived to the present day. Believed to ... more

From the City of New York/Parks & Recreation Historical Signs Program:

This park honors Daniel D. Tompkins (1774–1825), who served as Governor of New York from 1807 to 1817 and as Vice President of the United States under James Monroe (1758-1831) from 1817 to 1825. Peter Stuyvesant (1610–1672), director general of the Dutch colony of New Netherland, owned this property during the 17th century. Tompkins later acquired it, and by the 19th century, it was marked for development as a public square.

The Commissioners’ Plan of 1811 proposed a large market on this land stretching from First Avenue to the East River, but plans for the market never materialized. Bordered today by Avenues A and B, and 7th and 10th Streets, Tompkins Square Park was acquired by the City in 1834. Originally swampland, this site was graded and landscaped between 1835 and 1850. In 1866, the New York State Legislature ordered the City to remove a number of trees that had been planted at the time of the park’s creation to allow for an open parade ground for the Seventh Regiment of New York. A few Sycamore (Platanus occidentalis) trees were spared, and of those, three survived to the present day. Believed to be the oldest trees in the park, two of the Sycamores can be found along 10th Street and the other is located on Avenue A at 9th Street.

The New York State Legislature, bowing to pressure from city residents, redesignated the square as a public park in 1878, and it was redesigned the following year. Approximately 450 trees were planted and many of those remain in the park today. Species include Black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia), American elm (Ulmus americana), and Oriental plane (Platanus orientalis).

The park is home to several monuments, including the Temperance Memorial Fountain (1888), the Samuel S. Cox monument (1891), the Slocum Memorial Fountain (1906), several memorial plaques, and the Ukrainian-American Flagstaff (1942), which was donated by the Ukrainian Production Unit of the American Red Cross. A playground for girls was built in 1904, and in 1911, 10,000 people came here to witness the City’s first inter-park athletic championships. Parks Commissioner Robert Moses (1888–1981) expanded recreation opportunities in the park in the 1930s, adding handball courts and swing sets. A bandshell was completed in 1966 in time for frequent concerts and rallies, which characterized that period in history.

Since its beginnings in the 19th century, Tompkins Square Park has served as a place to voice dissent. Demonstrations in 1857 and 1875 about the lack of jobs and the poor economy gave way to local residents’ protests about gentrification in the 1980s and 1990s. In the late 1980s, police and East Village residents clashed after Parks began enforcing the park’s closing hours, in effect barring homeless from camping in the park. In 1991 the park was closed and dozens of homeless people who had been living in the park were relocated.

The park was reconstructed and reopened in the summer of 1992. During this renovation, the bandshell was removed, a state-of-the-art dog run and new playgrounds were built, several monuments conserved, and the turf and sidewalks replaced. Today Tompkins Square Park continues to serve a diverse community, providing a peaceful, meditative environment within the bustle of city life.


Drag the street view to look around 360°.
Use the arrow buttons to navigate down the street and around the neighborhood!

There are no events taking place on this date.

Info

E. 7th St. and Ave. A
New York, NY 10009
(212) 408-0100

Editorial Rating

Admission And Tickets

Free

This Week's Hours

Dawn - 1:00am

Nearby Subway

  • to 1st Ave -- 0.6

Upcoming Events

Tompkins Square Greenmarket

Weekly, year-round greenmarket in Tompkins Square.

11/04/2018 08:00 AM
Sun, November 04
8:00AM
$
Free

Tompkins Square Greenmarket

Weekly, year-round greenmarket in Tompkins Square.

11/11/2018 08:00 AM
Sun, November 11
8:00AM
$
Free

Tompkins Square Greenmarket

Weekly, year-round greenmarket in Tompkins Square.

11/18/2018 08:00 AM
Sun, November 18
8:00AM
$
Free

Tompkins Square Greenmarket

Weekly, year-round greenmarket in Tompkins Square.

11/25/2018 08:00 AM
Sun, November 25
8:00AM
$
Free
View All Upcoming Events

@NYCParks

Every @nycmarathon mile tells a story. Our Commissioner @mitchell_silver introduced Mile 24 on @ABC7NY this week!
https://t.co/dfqmpDoUsE Fri at 9:19 PM

It's #NationalPumpkinDay! Now's a good time to start decorating your Halloween pumpkins for the Pumpkin Flotilla in…
https://t.co/oNXRaGEaxM Fri at 7:20 PM

RT @NYCMayorsOffice: Today we unveiled the redesign of the Olde Towne of Flushing Burial Ground Plaza, the resting place of over 1,000 Afri… Fri at 7:03 PM

RT @NYC_DOT: This season we’ve installed new two-way protected #bikenyc lanes on 73rd Ave and 233rd St #inQueens to build stronger connecti… Fri at 6:27 PM

view all

Other Parks Attractions

Marine Park

Marine Park surrounds the westernmost inlet of Jamaica Bay, which at the turn of... view

Brooklyn Bridge Park

A combination of traditional park and repurposed piers, Brooklyn Bridge Park off... view

East River Park

This 57-acre park commands views of the Brooklyn waterfront and stretches from t... view

Wolfe's Pond Park

From the City of New York/Parks & Recreation Historical Signs Program:

Wolfe’... view