irregular terrain of swamps and bluffs, punctuated by rocky outcroppings, made
the land between Fifth and Eighth avenues and 59th and 106th streets undesirable
for private development. Creating the park, however, required displacing roughly
1,600 poor residents, including Irish pig farmers and German gardeners, who
lived in shanties on the site. At Eighth Avenue and 82nd Street, Seneca Village
had been one of the city's most stable African-American settlements, with three
churches and a school. The extension of the boundaries to 110th Streetin 1863
brought the park to its current 843 acres.