Best Historically Documented Strip Of Grass (2008)


At the end of Catherine Street, which becomes the Catherine Slip, lies the CATHERINE MALL, an unassuming grassy median strip haphazardly lined with shrubs, located directly between the Manhattan and Brooklyn bridges—a few steps from a smashing view of the East River. Despite its rugged appearance, the measly .0143 acre is adorned with a 570-word sign, detailing the history of Catherine, her rich ancestors, her son Henry Rutgers, and elaborate information about the patch of land itself. Thus the casual passerby is made aware of Catherine's seven children, Henry's stint as an army captain, the $200 bell he once donated, and the obscure fact that the Catherine Mall lay underwater far into the 19th century, until the edge of Manhattan was extended through various landfill projects. Later, under the WPA, the surrounding area was fixed up, trees were planted, and a proper sign was built.


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