We LOVE Bronx trivia, so in continuing our tradition of Bronx Facts, here’s a list of additional trivia you probably didn’t know about!

In this map 7 years prior to annexation, you can see that Riverdale, Van Cortlandt Village, Woodlawn and surrounding areas were still part of Yonkers. "Bronx1867" by F. W. Beers - Westchester County Archives. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons - https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Bronx1867.jpg#/media/File:Bronx1867.jpg
In this map 7 years prior to annexation, you can see that Riverdale, Van Cortlandt Village, Woodlawn and surrounding areas were still part of Yonkers.
“Bronx1867” by F. W. Beers – Westchester County Archives. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Bronx1867.jpg#/media/File:Bronx1867.jpg

1. The Bronx was the first area annexed to New York City—long before Staten Island, Queens, and yeah…Brooklyn. The Bronx used to be Westchester County and in fact, the county seat was right in Westchester Square in the old town of Westchester. In 1874 the Annexed District was created when the present West Bronx was incorporated into New York County. By 1895 the East Bronx was annexed as well and for 3 years New York City was comprised of Manhattan and The Bronx until in 1898 the remaining 3 boroughs were incorporated into today’s modern-day New York City. It wasn’t until 1914 that The Bronx officially became a separate county from New York and the last county created in New York State.

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Morris High School date unknown/ Image credit unknown from the archives of the New York Public Library.
Morris High School date unknown/ Image credit unknown from the archives of the New York Public Library.

2. Morris High School was the first public high school in The Bronx and opened its doors to students in 1897 and moved into the current landmark building we all know in 1904. The school produced such notable Bronxites and world-renowned individuals such as former Secretary of State Colin Powell, comedian Milton Berle, Gabe Pressman, senior correspondent for WNBC and is considered one of the pioneers of American TV news, and modern-day bachata sensation Romeo Santos.

3rd Avenue/149th Street 2/5 station in 1910 at 149th Street and Melrose Avenue with the Third Ave El above./Image Copyright Old NYC Photos
3rd Avenue/149th Street 2/5 station in 1910 at 149th Street and Melrose Avenue with the Third Ave El above./Image Copyright Old NYC Photos

3. With the expansion of subway into The Bronx, our borough became so popular that in a span of 30 years the population increased by over 1 million residents to 1,265,258 in 1930!

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4. Co-op City, completed in 1973 atop the short-lived amusement park, Freedom Land, is the largest Cooperative Housing development in the world with over 50,000 residents. It truly is a city within a city!

Hupfel Brewery in Melrose in 1869 / Image Credit Unknown
Hupfel Brewery in Melrose in 1869 / Image Credit Unknown

5. Melrose and Morrisania were once the brewing capital of The Bronx with 7 breweries stretching across 18 blocks! One of the breweries, Haffen’s located on 152nd and Melrose Avenue belonged to the family of The Bronx’s FIRST Borough President, Louis F. Haffen. Only Hupfel Brewery still stands (barely).

Hope you enjoyed these tidbits of Bronx History and don’t forget to check out our entire series on Bronx Facts!

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