Ravenswood is the name for the strip of land bordering the East River located in the borough of Queens in Long Island City, Long Island, New York. It is part of Queens Community Board 1. The neighborhood is aligned along the East River between Keyspan’s Big Allis generating plant, just south of the Roosevelt “Welfare Island” bridge at 36th Avenue, and Hallet’s Cove at the northern end of Vernon Boulevard. The latitude of Ravenswood is 40.761N. The longitude is -73.936W. It is in the Eastern Standard time zone. Elevation is 20 feet.
In 1651, the area was first settled by the Dutch when Captain Francis Fyn assumed what would later be called Roosevelt Island and the strip of land facing it across the East River on Long Island. Many remarkable mansions were laid out on Vernon Boulevard in the mid-1800s. In 1814, the land was acquired by Col. George Gibbs and intended to create a private residential park. He died in 1833, and the land was divided into nine parcels by three developers.
The neighborhood came into its own as a residential area in the 19th century but only after New York City had purchased the land in the 1840s and proceeded to construct orphan asylums and smallpox hospitals. It was burnt the smallpox hospital to the ground by the angry Astorians in 1845. In recent time, Ravenswood is highly residential but not along the waterfront, where a couple of manufacturing concerns persist.
Several residents insisted that the famous writer named Edgar Allan Poe had a house in the locality. The house was located on 84th and Amsterdam in Manhattan, near Riverside Park. It was here that Poe put the finishing touches on “The Raven,” which is probably how the documents became erroneously associated with Ravenswood, Queens. The Socrates Sculpture Park and the Noguchi Museum are amongst the best historical landmarks in Ravenswood.
The Socrates Sculpture Park has a wonderful location by the waterfront. It offers free admission to enjoy the work of a variety of artists. The Park is used for a series of events that reach out to the public and encourage them to study and to appreciate Art. The Noguchi Museum also takes this process a step further, with a priceless exposition of the path breaking work of Isamu Noguchi.
Ravenswood is a site for a large public housing project. About 4 thousand people live in Ravenswood Houses and the lay out of the apartment blocks contain many fields of study for architects, city planners, and social scientists as well. Ravenswood has traveled the common Queens journey from agriculture to industry and residence. Ravenswood Houses marks a key stop in developing the neighborhood as a place for large numbers of urban citizens to stay.