Thursday, June 30, 2011

Down with the Dust

This is a brilliant picture of city heat in the 1840s. Makes me appreciate my air conditioning, though I wish I was just a quick boat trip away from Coney Island...

"DOWN WITH THE DUST," says the ready money tradesman, and "down with the dust" says the weary city pedestrian while wending his way over heated and dusty streets of the metropolis ; yes, "down with the dust" say all--but down you cannot get it. You may, however, avoid it by taking a trip to Coney Island in any of the beautiful steamers that ply there, either the James Madison, St. Nicholas or Kosciusko. Such a trip is worth more to health and life than all the doctors and physic that can be found in the state. The adv't may be found in another column.

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Tuesday, August 8, 1848

The ads referenced seem to be the ones I posted at Though by August, it appears some of the stops and hours had changed, so I suggest you search the Brooklyn Daily Eagle for the steamers if you have a specific date you're interested in...

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Drowning in Coney Island - 1848

WOMAN DROWNED AT CONEY ISLAND--A party of some fifteen persons, consisting of several New York courtezans (sic), attired in the most fashionable style, and their male admirers, went to Coney Island Point yesterday afternoon. They all went bathing in the surf, and it is said that their conduct was of a description to shock the sensibilities of others who were also availing themselves of the facilities for surf bathing. One gentleman, Mr. Geo. Stamford, of Gowanus, who was present with his wife, retired from this disagreeable proximity, and was about quitting the water, when an alarm was given that two of the above named party of girls were drowning, having been carried off their feet by the surf. None of their male companions proffered them any assistance, and Mr. Stamford rushed out and rescued one, who was resuscitated with great difficulty. The other, named Maria Monell, was too far out to be saved, and accordingly perished. Her lifeless body was, however, afterward recovered.

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Saturday, July 29, 1848

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Coney Isl'd Transporation - 1848

A couple ads on how to get to Coney. Can't quite format correctly here.


Leave foot Grand st, 10 AM
" Catharine st, 10 1/4
Pier No. 4, N R, 11
Leave Coney Island 12 M
Fare each way, 12 1/2 cts.

Leave foot Grand st., 1 1/4 PM
" Catharine st, 1 1/2
Pier No. 4, N R, 2
Leave Coney Island 5
J. F. RUDMAN, Agent

jy3 2mM6 Office foot of North Moore st, up stairs.

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Wednesday, July 5, 1848

Same day (and many days thereafter)


On and after Monday, July 3d, the boats will run as follows : The steamers ST. NICHOLAS, Captain J. N. Rodman--JAMES MADISON, Captain L. Sisson--KOSCIUSKO, Captain Rodman.


13th st, N R, 9 AM
Hammond, 9 1/4
Canal, 9 1/2
Pier No. 4, 10
Coney Isl'd, 11

13th st, N R, 12 M
Hammond, 12 1/4
Canal, 12 1/2
Pier No. 4, 1 PM
Coney Isl'd, 1 3/4

13th st, N R, 3 PM
Hammond, 3 1/4
Canal, 3 1/2
Pier No. 4, 4 PM
Coney Isl'd, 6 3/4

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Wednesday, July 5, 1848

Saturday, June 25, 2011

4th of July 1848

For some reason, the Eagle doesn't seem to print much about July 4th on Coney Island.

EXCURSIONS.--Remember the excursions in behalf of Mitchell, the Irish patriot, to-morrow. The advertisement will be found in our columns. The excusion (sic) is up the Hudson to Rockland Lake.

There is also an excursion to Coney Island. Another on the Long Island Rail Road and some others beside advertised to-day to which we refer those who wish to go out of the city.

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Monday, July 3, 1848

Sadly, the Coney Island ad for 4th of July is basically illegible, having been marked through on the website. But I'm sure people visited and had a lovely time.

What's the deal with Mitchell? From other articles, it appears they're referring to John Mitchel, Irish nationalist (some info at

This site notes he was convicted of treason in Ireland in May 1848 and sentenced to 14 years "transportation" in what is now Tasmania. Eventually he escaped to America, and did a lot of writing. He supported Southern slaveholders!

June 21, 1848, there was a meeting in his support.

The great Irish meeting on Fort Green.

The storm of yesterday cleared up just in time to permit the Irish meeting to be held at, or at a little after the appointed hour, but the grass was wet and vast numbers, especially of the woman, who had arranged to attend were thus prevented. Still there was a very large assemblage--we should say about five thousand persons--who braved the threatening clouds and the dripping grass and met on this old camping ground to speak in behalf of poor Ireland, and the brave and gallant woman who has sacrificed her patriotic husband in the cause of her country....

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Wednesday, July 21, 1848

An article from Tuesday, June 27, 1848 notes that "Mr. Wm. Mitchell", John's brother, was at the Astor house. In an article from Thursday, June 29, 1848, Brooklyn's mayor dispersed a gathering of Irish who had supposedly gathered to "meet and pray for the deliverance of Mitchell from his convict ship at Bermuda", apparently for "breaking the Sabbath". (The Eagle, however, claims "the mayor only advised that the meeting should quietly disperse.")

I find the inconsistency in spelling names (Mitchell or Mitchel) to be really interesting. I know Irish names were modified for America, but "Mitchel" doesn't seem like it needed changed to me...

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Oceana House? - 1848

CONEY ISLAND.--This favorite bathing place year by year attracts more and more attention. Stages run from this city every day, and there is also a steamboat from New York, which lands its passengers at the point of the island. During the past year a number of improvements have been made, greatly enlarging the accommodations for visitors. The Oceana House, (sic), a large and commodious modern hotel, is among the number. It possesses accommodations for 300 persons, and is eligibly situated, and very well kept by our friend, Dr. Clark. It commands a splendid view of the sea, and of the harbor of New York, is well arranged, and provided with every comfort and convenience. We understand that the distance of this house from Brooklyn, is about ten miles--just a comfortable drive--and that too, over a beautiful country, fanned by breezes fresh from the bosom of the ocean. We do not know of a more delightful afternoon's ride. We commend it to the attention of the reader, and especially the house of Dr. Clark, which will be found a most agreeable resting place.

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Tuesday, June 20, 1848

The Oceana House, huh? I almost wonder if they typoed the name "Oceanic House" on purpose, so it didn't seem like quite so much of an ad...?

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Hussars Attacking Coney Island

This can't be serious, can it?...

MILITARY.--The officers, commissioned and non-commissioned, had their second drill yesterday afternoon in the City Park, preparatory to the general parade of the regiment, next Wednesday, at the same place.

A company of hussars, supposed to be that of Capt. Marx, passed up Fulton street this morning from New York. It is supposed they have gone on a secret expedition against Coney Island, as no one of whom we inquired could enlighten us on that point.

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Thursday, June 15, 1848

Looks like the Hussars were probably cavalry.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Churches with Closed Doors - August 26, 1847

Forgot to upload this one back in 1847... Early reference to Coney Island as a place of sin.


During the hot season, many of your country readers may not be aware that the fashionable churches of New York are all shut up. A pious exclusive would as soon take a stroll on our beautiful "Battery," as be seen at church in July or August; so the doors of the sanctuary are closed. The spider spins his web in the pulpit; the dust settles think (sic) on the splendidly-bound Bible, the sexton drinks juleps at Coney Island; and the respectable pastor recruits his exhausted energies in the religious salons of Saratoga or Newport.

The National Era - August 26, 1847

I'd assume there is at least some exaggeration as to the state of churches. The New York Times did have a listing for religious services for July and August 1852 (the earliest the archives go for those months).

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Oceanic House - 1848

CONEY ISLAND.--A new public house has been erected at Coney Island, by Dr. Clark, and is to be opened for the reception of visitors on the first of June. It is to be called the Oceanic House, and is so spacious as to accommodate three or four hundred persons. Coney Island is getting to be an important place, and the Governor of Coney Island an important man. Last summer, during the bathing season, two steamboats plied regularly between Coney Island and New York, and this year we may expect that the number of visitors will be greatly increased.

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Friday, April 28, 1848

That sure sounds like another reference to Governor Gil Davis if you ask me.

OCEANIC HOUSE, CONEY ISLAND.--A. CLARK, PROPRIETOR.--This Hotel, erected during the last year, and possessing accommodations for 300 guests, is now open for the reception of the public. The hotel is pleasantly situated about two miles from the Point ; commands an extensive view of the sea and the harbor of New York, and is replete with every modern improvement and convenience. The bathing ground of Coney Island is acknowledged to be the best and the safest in the United States, and every facility is afforded at the Oceanic House for the bathers. The hotel will be kept as one of the first class, and every exertion made to give complete satisfaction.--The distance from New York and Brooklyn is about ten miles. The route by land is over one of the most beautiful roads in the country, while that by water is through a bay and harbor unsurpassed in lovely and picturesque scenery. Stages and boats pass to and from the island every hour in the day. With all these advantages combined, the Oceanic House, situated on an island celebrated for its bracing air and healthy locality, cannot fail to be a desirable and grateful retreat during the hot months of summer.

PS. Rooms can be procured by making application at the Astor House from 10 to 11 1/2 o'clock' or of the proprietor on the premises, Oceanic House, Coney Island.

je9 A. CLARK, Proprietor.

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Friday, June 9, 1848 (and June 10, 12, 14, 16, 17, 19, 21, 22, and so on)

Foundations of America describes the Astor House as a hotel on Broadway between Vesey and Barclay Streets. It opened in 1836.

The Knickerbocker magazine had information as well:

DR. CLARK, of Langsingburgh, favorably known to many of our citizens, has entered upon the occupancy of 'The Oceanic-House' at Coney-Island, a first-class establishment, of great capacity, and possessing architectural attractions of no mean order. Nothing can exceed the extent and beauty of the ocean-view to be commanded from the hotel, while the sea-bathing is well known, cannot be matched in quality and safety on the Atlantic coast. With a table supplied with all that our markets can afford, wines of the best description, courteous attention, and invigorating sea-breezes, we can scarcely imagine a pleasanter spot wherein to defy the fervors of the summer solstice than the easily-accessible ' Oceanic-House' at Coney-Island...

--Knickerbocker, or, New-York monthly magazine, Volume 32 By Washington Irving, Published 1848

Thursday, June 16, 2011

The State of Coney Island - 1848

Welcome to 1848. More from Governor Gil Davis. What a great way to start the new year!

ANOTHER NEW STATE.--The Herald has the following pleasant bit of burlesque upon the proceedings of the late convention held, by certain facetious, oyster-loving gentlemen, on Prospect Hill:

State of Coney Island.-- Pursuant to notice given delegates from Clam-town, Oyster-bay, Lobster and Crao-fish village, assembled at the Pavilion at Tent-town, on Thursday evening last, for the purpose of taking into consideration the expediency of applying to the powers that be, to set apart as a new State, viz: The State of Coney Island. Gil Davis, on being called to the chair, made a few remarks relating to the present and former greatness of Coney Island, in an agricultural and maritime point of view, as well as her late oppression in the outcry and run upon her Fishing-Banks and Plain-fields. The following resolutions were unanimously adopted:

Resolved, That Coney Island is so situated in her local position, being altogether isolated and distinct from the rest of the Union, having, moreover, a superabundant population, that it would be greatly to her advantage to have conferred upon her the character and honors of a sovereign and independent State.

Resolved, That the town of Clams, and the bay of Oysters, as the future capital of the State, ought to be united under one municipal organization, and that their streets and inhabitants ought to run together.

Resolved, that Gil Davis, our able and efficient President, who has so long and ably presided over the territory of Coney Island, be, and hereby is, appointed Governor of the new State.

Letters from eminent and distinguished citizens of the Clam State expressive of their approval of the objects of the meeting, and who, from various causes were unable to attend, having been read, the meeting adjourned to the first of April.

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Wednesday, March 1, 1848

Note the date the meeting adjourned to, in case you couldn't tell it was a joke. I THINK the meeting actually took place February 24 (the Thursday before publication date; 1848 was a leap year per Calendar Home ). Then again, the Eagle could have taken more than a week to print it...

And this is the order they were actually printed--the explanation follows THE NEXT DAY.

THE NEW STATES.--The movement made by the Long Islanders to obtain a charter "to have conferred upon Long Island the character and honors of a sovereign and independent state," as appears by the meeting lately held in Brooklyn, at which resolutions were passed to carry these objects into effect has caused great excitement among the neighboring population, and has given rise to a meeting on Coney Island to effect a similar purpose, the particulars of which have been furnished by our reporter.--Herald

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Thursday, March 2, 1848

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Robbery at the Pavilion - 1847

Couldn't find any more information on this, though I would guess the tent/pavilion they reference was the first amusement structure on Coney Island.


ROBBERY AT THE CONEY ISLAND TENT.--The name of the man who was arrested in this city for the above robbery, is James Harriot. He is now confined in jail awaiting an examination. The robbery consisted in the abstraction of a feather bed and other household articles valued at about $100 belong to Edwin R. Howlett. They were taken off in a small boat and rowed up to this city. Harriot is supposed to have an accomplice in the above robbery.

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Monday, December 6, 1847


.......James Harriot was adjudged to the county jail for 60 days and to pay a fine of $25 for petit larceny at the Coney island pavilion. Michael Morsack, his alleged accomplice, gave bail for his appearance for trial........

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Monday, December 13, 1847

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Auction and Pretty Girls near Coney

A couple miscellaneous references to Coney Island:

JAMES COLE will give his personal attention to sales of Household Furniture, and out door sales generally ; also, to sales of Real Estate, Stocks, &c. at the Exchange New York...

Tuesday, August 31st,

At 2 o'clock, at the Union Hotel, in the town of Gravesend, of land attached thereto, known as the Union hotel, situated in the town of Gravesend, about one quarter of a mile from Coney Island. The premises are in good repair.--The barn and horse shed are new. It is a desirable residence for a summer boarding house, being near the seashore. 50 per cent can remain on bond and mortgage. For particulars, apply to the auctioneer.

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Wednesday, August 11, 1847 (and some days after)

HOW WE WENT DOWN TO FORT HAMILTON--AND OTHER MATTERS.--Some of our Brooklyn friends have been touched with the war fever, like thousands of young fellows about the land ; and yesterday afternoon we went down to Fort Hamilton, to see one of them who is going out in the detachment that sails next week in the ship Isabella, for California. The fourth-rate steamboat American Eagle, (we cannot conscientiously put her rank any higher,) was--on her 4 o'clock trip from nigh the battery--thickly crowded with people, most of whom were on their way to Coney Island. We must confess that we did notice a great many pretty girls, but then there's no harm in that ; all the beautiful creatures in nature were made to be looked at. With this exception, the appearance and accommodations of the 'bird of liberty,' (presumptious (sic) name to give a dilapidated steamboat !) were not of the most inviting kind. On deck, forward, were stationed a young man with a violin, which he handled quite cleverly for a common player, and a boy who 'did' the vocal parts,--consisting of divers versions of ' (Negro*)' tunes, some of them with here and there a happy hit. Among the greatest favorites was one which solemnly enjoined upon all people little and big, to

"Clear the way for General Taylor."

An unnecessary task it seems to us--as that worthy is in the habit of taking the job upon himself, and asking no favors of any one. The young gentleman also volunteered the information that

"To lick the Mexicans he's a whaler."

Meaning the General aforementioned....

I know it's history, but I'm not going to type the word they used instead of "Negro."

The article continues to describe the barracks at Fort Hamilton. Some "apartments" had women--wives who would be accompanying their men--and children. And in fairness, the author notes how "good-looking" the volunteer soldiers were.

...The moustache and full beard are in vogue at Fort Hamilton--which saves a good deal of trouble in shaving, and gives a more menacing and masculine appearance likewise....

The return of the American Eagle (we can't exactly swallow that name, in the connection,) was signalized by a series of rockings which gave every passenger a tangible idea of his cradle-days. There were far too many people on board, for comfort.--Still, for our part, we had a pleasant evening sail ; the clear sky overhead, and the salt odor of the waters around. The young minstrel who accompanied the boat down, was also with its return. He was a bright looking, rosy cheeked lad--and must have been tired enough with his day's work. Poor child ! we saw him fast asleep in the East Brooklyn omnibus, an hour afterwards!.........These little trips do one good, and we recommend our readers to take them as often as may be.

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Saturday, August 14, 1847

There's a bit about the Mexican-American War here.

Bonus story - Hot Dogs and Conmen

I had a couple Coney island stories from 1921--including a strike by the frankfurter stuffers!--at my other blog, Past, Imaginary, and Future.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Temperance near Coney Island and Steamboat North America - 1847

GEORGE HALL UNION, NO. 22, Daughters of Temperance, will give a Grand Pic-Nic Excursion on Wednesday, August 4th, 1847.

The Union have chartered the large and elegant steamboat NORTH AMERICA, and also engaged GRANGER'S celebrated Band, together with appropriate cotillion music, for those who may feel inclined to "trip it," etc. They have also engaged Professor HANDLEY, the unrivalled teetotal caterer, to furnish refreshments on true temperance principles...

The boat will leave the foot of Canal st. N.Y., at 7 A.M.; the new pier at Grand st. E R., 7 1/2, Williamsburgh (foot South 2d st) at 8 ; first pier above Catharine ferry, N. Y., at 8 1/2 ; and Thorne's dock, near Fulton ferry, Brooklyn, at 9 o'clock ; it will pass down through the Narrows, by Fort Hamilton, nearing Coney Island, the Highlands, and Light House, and proceed to that lovely and sequestered spot, Biddle's Grove, opposite Perth Amboy, where the party will remain about four hours...

Tickets 50 cents ; children under 12 half price--all cadets of temperance will go for half price....

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Thursday, July 22, 1847 (also July 23, 28, 29, 31, and August 2, 3, 4, 1847)

Funny to see the word "teetotal" (I didn't know it was an adjective)...and to see it used positively!

I am personally just about a "teetotaler..." but I suppose it is kind of fitting that the temperance boat only passed NEAR Coney Island.

It appears there were at least two steamboats named "North America" (the second built after the first was out of commission). But I can't find a definitive date the second "North America" was even built or what its eventual fate was. It looks like it made it to the 1860s.

At any rate, The New York Times has a rather graphic story from November 21, 1857 involving a steamboat North America. It's titled "RUM'S DOINGS. / Horrible Accident on a Steamboat". It gets worse, but suffice it to say, the man perished and they suspect his lack of balance (due to drink) was the cause.

The word "ironic" is overused, but it this was the same "North America" as was used for a temperance excursion......

EDITS: There was a very similar excursion, with much of the same copy, "Wednesday, August 2d, 1848" on the steamboat Hudson. Also Wednesday, August 21, 1850, on the "large and commodious steamboat NEW-JERSEY."

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Coney Island Clambake - 1847

Great description of a pleasant day at Coney Island before the amusement era really took hold.

RIDE TO CONEY ISLAND, AND CLAM-BAKE THERE. Never was there a time better fitted than yesterday, for an excursion from city to country, or from pavement to the sea-shore ! The rain of the previous evening had cooled the air, and moistened the earth ; there was no dust, and no unpleasant heat. It may well be imagined, then, that a jolly party of about sixty people, who, at 1 o'clock, p.m., met at the house of Mr. King, on the corner of Fulton and Orange streets, (where they laid a good foundation for after pleasures,) had every reason to bless their stars at the treat surely before them. Yes: there was to be a clam-bake--and, of all places in the world, a clam-bake at Coney Island ! Could mortal ambition go higher, or mortal wishes delve deeper?........At a little before 2, the most superb stages, four of them, from Husted & Kendall's establishment, were just nicely filled, (no crowding, and no vacant places either,) and the teams of four and six horses dashed off with us all at a merry rate.--The ride was a most inspiring one. After crossing the railroad track, the signs of country life, the green fields, the thrifty corn, the orchards, the wheat lying in swathes, and the hay-cocks here and there, with the farming-men at work all along, made such a spectacle as we dearly like to look upon. And then the clatter of human tongues, inside the carriages--the peals upon peals of laughter ! the jovial witticisms, the anecdotes, stories, and so forth!--Why there were enough to fill ten octave volumes ! The members of the party were numerous and various--embracing all the professions, and nearly all the trades, besides sundry aldermen, and other officials.

Arrived at Coney Island, the first thing was to "take a dance," at which sundry distinguished personages shook care out of their heads and dust from their heels, at a great rate. Then a bathe in the salt water ; ah, that was good indeed! Divers marvellous (sic) feats were performed in the water, in the way of splashing, ducking and sousing, and one gentleman had serious thoughts of a sortie out upon some porpoises who were lazily rolling a short distance off. The beautiful, pure, sparkling, sea-water! one yearns to you (at least we do,) with an affection as grasping at your own waves !

Half-past five o'clock had now arrived, and the booming of the dinner bell produced a sensible effect upon 'the party,' who ranged themselves at table without the necessity of a second invitation. As the expectation had been only for a 'clam-bake' there was some surprise evinced at seeing a regularly laid dinner, in handsome style, too, with all the et-ceteras. But as an adjunct--by some, made the principal thing--in due time, on came the roasted clams, well-roasted indeed ! in the old Indian style, in beds, covered with brush and chips, and thus cooked in their own broth. When hunger was appeased with these savory and wholesome viands, the champagne, (good stuff it was!) began to circulate--and divers gentlemen made speeches, introductory to, and responsive at, toasts. A great many happy hits were made, and, in especial, one of the aldermen, at the head of one of the tables, conceived a remarkable toast, at which the people seemed tickled hugely. The healths of Messrs. Masterton, Smith, and King, of Mr. Murphy, and of the corporation of Brooklyn, etc. were drank. Nor were the artisans and workingmen forgotten ; nor were the ladies, nor the Brooklyn press, which the member of congress from this district spoke in the most handsome manner of, and turned off a very neat toast upon.

The return to Brooklyn, in the evening, was a fit conclusion to a day of enjoyment. The cool air, the smell of the new mown hay, the general quiet around (there was any thing but quiet, however, inside our vehicles,) made it pleasant indeed. We ascended to the tower-like seat, by Mr. Carnfield, the driver of the six-horse stage, and had one of the pleasentest sort of eight-mile rides back to Brooklyn, at which place our party arrived a little after 9 o'clock. All thanks, and long and happy lives, to the contractors on the new city hall ! to whose generous spirit we were indebted for yesterday's pleasure.

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Thursday, July 15, 1847

Wait--these big shots got a wonderful day at Coney Island from the contractors for Brooklyn's (?) city hall? Is this some sort of bribe?

Note they brag about how comfortable it was for the party of about 60 to ride in 4 stagecoaches? That's 15 passengers each, on average. Everything I've read about stagecoaches says they normally ran with 9 passengers inside. So that was probably 6 more atop each roof.

Of course, it might be kind of fun to ride in a stage for a couple hours in nice weather. (And probably even more fun if you were inebriated.)

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Long Island Canal and Jamaica Canal

Welcome to 1847!

From the Gazette and Times.

THE PROJECT OF THE LONG ISLAND CANAL--of which we have once or twice already made brief mention--seems to find great favor, notwithstanding the opposition of the Brooklyn Eagle. The proposed line of navigation commences at Gravesend Bay, thence through the neck separating Coney Island from the main land, and so on to Peconic, and when completed will enable vessels to navigate the bays from Coney Island to South Hampton--a distance of 80 miles--with 4 feet water at low tide.

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Tuesday, January 26, 1847

I'm not seeing much reference to this canal later; it sounds like it would have made Coney MORE of an island. (At this point there was likely a bridge over Coney Island Creek to bring people to Coney from the mainland. Now, of course, it's not an "island" at all, with much of the creek filled in.)

I can't get Rochester History's page to load but the cached version says a company WAS incorporated in 1848 to build a Long Island canal, and that "no results were achieved by either company toward carrying out the purposes for which they were incorporated."

The page implies the Shinnecock Canal in Long Island--a much more logical place for a canal than an 80-mile canal from Coney Island to South Hampton, IMO--opened in 1892. Wikipedia cites that date too.

There was more talk of a different canal exactly one month later:

QUEENS CO. CANAL.--Application will be made to the legislature of this state at its present session, to incorporate a company to be called the "Jamaica and New York canal company," for the purpose of digging a canal from Beaver pond in the village of Jamaica to Jamaica bay, and also to have power to open and straighten the ditches from Jamaica bay to Coney Island bay.

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Friday, February 26, 1847

Again, the only page I can find on this is from, which, at time of writing, wouldn't load! The cached page seems to imply nothing was done on this either.

I wonder if the lack of progress on canals came with the increasing importance of railroads, or if everyone just couldn't get their act together? Maybe both.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

End of the Season - 1846

This ran several times near the end of August:

SUNDAY EXCURSIONS.--THE superior steamboat IOLAS, Captain Yates, wil leave Thorne's Dock, near Fulton ferry, Brooklyn, on Sunday, August 30, at 2 P.M. for Coney Island--returning, will leave Coney I. at 6 1/2 o'clock--stopping at Fort Hamilton each way. Fare 12 1/2 cents each way.

There is a regular Ordinary at the Island, on the N. York plan--everything 12 1/2 cents a plate ; also, good stages to take passengers to the upper houses, at 1. each. Apply to
R. J. Todd, 88 Fulton street

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Wednesday, August 26, 1846

And this is the last article I saw on Coney for 1846. I think it's the end of the season!


CONEY ISLAND.--The Steamer Iolas, Capt. Yates goes to Coney Island to-morrow afternoon from Thorn's dock. at 2 o'clock.

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Saturday, August 29, 1846

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Ladies of Saratoga

I didn't follow this, honestly. Any ideas?

AMUSEMENT.--The ladies of Saratoga have introduced the ancient and interesting amusement of archery--at Hempton Beach they think nothing of a "double strike" on a bowling alley--at Nahant they frequently have a run of fifty at billiards--at Gloucester they walk five miles before breakfast--at Kittery Point they swim ten--at Cape May weep themselves to death in reading the pathetic epistle of Chandler to his elbow-chair--and at Coney Island do bathing and walking barefoot on the sand.

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Monday, August 24, 1846

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Sightseeing Excursion - August 15, 1846

This one was almost illegible:

AFTERNOON EXCURSION, exclusively for the accommodation of the Citizens of Brooklyn and Williamsburgh.

The new and elegant steamboat ST. NICHOLAS will, on SATURDAY afternoon, August 15th, make an Excursion to the Lower Bay, affording a fine view of all the picturesque and beautiful points in our harbor--the Quarantine Ground, the Narrows, Fort Hamilton, Coney Island and Sandy Hook Lighthouse, and return to the same landing planes by 7 1/2 o'clock P.M.

The St. Nicholas will leave Williamsburgh, near the Ferry, at 3 o'clock ; Bridge street, Brooklyn, 3 1/2 ; Fulton Ferry, do, 3 3/4 ; foot of State street, South Ferry, 4 o'clock.

Fare for the Excursion, 50 cents.

--Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Wednesday, August 12, 1846 (also the 13th)

The "Quarantine Ground" appears to have been an area off Staten Island where incoming ships anchored so the immigrants could be inspected for infectious diseases. Probably was interesting to see from a distance, but also seems kind of an odd thing to sight-see. Of course, in the 1840s, visiting an insane asylum was apparently also considered a fun excursion.

This site has some scans from Harper's Weekly, 1879.