The Cortleyou Library Friends groups is hosting a presentation on Wednesday, February 27 at 6:30pm in celebration of Black History Month. Neighbor Herbert Seignoret, Associate Director of the Institute for the Exploration of Seneca Village History, will speak about Seneca Village, an African-American and Irish immigrant community in the 1800s located in what is today Central Park:
In the 1850s, the City of New York legislated to construct Central Park in an area that included a predominantly African-American and Irish-immigrant community known as Seneca Village. Taking the land through the right of eminent domain, it evicted the residents and razed their homes for the Park’s creation. After its residents were gone, the Village was lost to memory. Now, a team of archaeologists is undertaking the study of the Village. The project is uniquely positioned to elucidate the African-American experience and to highlight the significance of African Americans in the city’s history.