Washington Square Park ~ Creepy!

Well, this is mindless and pointless.

I was creeped out when I read this about one of my favorite parks (located in Greenwich Village by the NYU campus), generally populated by free-sprited types:

:: hold me! ::


15,000 bodies? Me thinks (probably) not - what is your source?

The US tradition pretty much forbids using graveyards (hallowed or not) as playgrounds.

No estimates on exact numbers, but there’s gotta be a lot of skeletons down there. It was a mass gravesite for about 100 years. Read this:


Interesting links, chula, but there’s one sorta big problem with them: They’re about Washington Square in Philadelphia, not Washington Square Park in New York.

[hijack]LolaCocaCola, when are we finally going to see you at a New York Doper gathering? The next one is the Kosher Dope Dinner next Monday.[/hijack]

Sorry happyheathen, but the American tradition was, up until fairly recently, to use graveyards for just such an alternative use - playgrounds. Particularly in big cities, where open space was at a premium, graveyards were typically used as gathering places and recreation spots. One of the reasons that elaborate gravestones came into vogue was that people knew that other folks would be in the graveyard and would see them - sort of showing off and displaying your wealth evern after you’re dead.

Well, the way I came accross the information was I have a friend from Seattle visiting for Thanksgiving and I was looking up stuff for us to do that week:


And a few steps from Washingston Square Park we have this cheery little residence:


Billdo, I’ll probably make a cameo appearance at one of the NYC Dope gatherings in January - just make sure you keep an itin. posted - particularly of the bars. :wink:

Well, for goodness sakes—you’re trodding over bodies in all East Coast towns! Bryant Park, on 41st Street, used to be a potter’s field, too, and look how many unexpected graveyards turn up during building excavations.

Oh, that’s right, Eve!

I used eat lunch at Bryant Park everyday when I worked by there! :eek:

Yeah, why do you think my rosebushes produce such lush blooms?

Hessian blood, man. Hessian blood.

Wow, that’s interesting, Ike.

When I recently went to The Cloisters in Fort Tryon Park high above the Hudson River bluffs (God, it’s beautiful there in the fall!) I read that 4,000 Hessian mercenaries attacked the outnumbered Maryland and Virginia riflemen who were defending the position (Fort Tryon).

I think I remember reading that Edgar Allan Poe’s parents—itinerant actors who died young and poor—were buried in Bryant Park.

Anybody gotta shovel? Wanna meet up midtown for lunch?

Poe’s father disappeared from the scene and it is not known that became of him. Poe’s mother died here in Richmond is buried about 500 yards from where I’m sitting. Come on down, we can grab some lunch, but it won’t be in mid-town Manhattan.

I have a shovel. I would love to dig up a few stories with Eve.

Kamiak High School Show Band – Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade:
Everett Herald

There’s a huge tree still standing at the northwest corner of the park that is popularly reported to have been used as a hanging tree in the 1700s. I’ve always wondered about this legend–didn’t they use gallows?–but it’s certainly old enough.

I also remember reading that when they used Washington Square as a military parade ground they had trouble because the weight of the guns occasionally caused the mass graves (from a yellow fever epidemic) to cave in.

[hijack]Sorry to continue the hijack, Lola, but you don’t have e-mail listed. Anyway, my suggestion would be to come to one of the smaller events before the big Dopefest so you can get to know a few of us in a more personal setting. We really don’t bite, much, unless you ask nicely. Anyway, e-mail me if you want to discuss this. [/hijack]

If you say so, miss.:slight_smile:

Strange. I wonder exactly how many other areas hold mass graves for revolutionary soldiers.

But this kind of stuff:

Really does freak me out, for some reason. I think it’s b/c I associate it above the ground (unlike graves).

Look out, Lola, this S.O.B. singlehandedly killed my Stranahan thread (including Eve’s extremely intricate and clever Longfellow parody) making goo-goo eyes at Gazelle.


Independence Mall in Philadelphia has a similar situation. Its a mass grave. Not long after the AR, there was an epidemic of some sort (yellow fever?) and thousands of people died. I doubt seriously that it was contained to just Philly.

Hessian blood? Ike, there were like a dozen dead Hessians from that fight. Besides, as we all well know, Hessians are very silly people!