Gravesend: The Home of Coney Island
Eric J. Ierardi

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ISBN Number: 0738523615
Number of Pages:
Publication Date:
November 2001
Arcadia Publishing

Brooklyn is an incredible mosaic of the human experience. Within this New York borough’s crowded city blocks, there are infinite stories of success and failure, hope and despair, euphoria and suffering. Gravesend, one of Brooklyn’s most historic neighborhoods, possesses a rich heritage that is, at once, typical of the American spirit in its ambition and energy, yet is also unique with its colorful pageantry of luxury hotels, pleasure parks, and larger-than-life personalities. 

Gravesend: The Home of Coney Island takes readers on a fascinating journey from the town’s first settlement in the 1640s by Lady Deborah Moody, an intrepid and visionary leader of religious freedom, across four centuries of progress, conflict, and change. Containing over 120 black-and-white images, this stunning illustrated history brings to life early figures and events that shaped Gravesend’s past and initiated Coney Island’s prominence as the world’s playground. Like a visitor of yesteryear, readers will stroll along the busy boardwalk, taste the world-famous hot dogs from Nathan’s Restaurant, explore the renowned dance halls, race tracks, and casinos, and thrill at the kaleidoscopic assortment of roller coasters and other breathtaking rides, such as the Parachute Jump, at the celebrated Dreamland, Luna, and Steeplechase Parks. 

Local historian Eric J. Ierardi, president of the Gravesend Historical Society, has composed an engaging narrative of Gravesend that chronicles major episodes in the community’s history and remembers the characters who added color and life to its politics, industries, and culture. Appealing to both readers who recall Coney Island’s glory days as the premier pleasure resort in the country and those who have only recently called Gravesend home, this comprehensive work serves as fitting testimony to the grandeur and importance of Gravesend in America’s story.

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